First Time Home Buyers


If you can follow these 9 easy steps it will make your home buying experience a pleasant one:

  1. Find a REALTOR you can trust, and that is knowledgeable of the financing process
  2. Discuss your financing concerns with your REALTOR if you think there is going to be a problem with your credit or debit load, your REALTOR should be able to answer your questions and determine which banker will have the best loan program that will fit your needs. It is important to stay within your means when purchasing a house.
  3. Gather and organize paperwork and documents. Items you should have readily available include paycheck stubs, W2 forms, tax returns and bank and investment statements for the last two years.
  4. Know your monthly income and budget, including how much you spend on rent,who your landlord is, if you have a lease know when it expires, how much is your car payment, Student loan payments, Credit cards. Things like cell phones and utilities do not show on the credit report.
  5. Part of the preapproval process is checking your credit score, the lender will pull a tri merge credit report which is all 3 credit bureaus Credit reporting agencies must give you one free report annually.
  6. Maxing out credit cards or falling behind on other loan payments could create issues when applying for a mortgage. Keep tabs on your spending habits before applying for a mortgage. Once you apply for a mortgage, don’t take on more big debt until it closes.
  7. Work with your banker to figure out how much you can borrow and which mortgage product is right for you. You’re REALTOR and Lender can explain available mortgage options- including rate adjustments, fees and other loan features – so you are prepared for the loan closing and not surprised down the road.
  8. Learn what current mortgage rates are. Bankers are there to help you understand how that translates into monthly mortgage payments.
  9. You’re REALTOR and Lender will educate you on any state, city and county government agencies offering special first-time-homebuyer loan or grant programs available to assist with down payment and closing costs

Ready to Get Started?

There are many types of loans. The 2 most common are FHA and Conventional

What is an FHA-Insured Loan?

FHA-Insured Loans offer many benefits and a level of security that you won’t find in other loans. While these loans are funded by Academy Mortgage, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) insures these mortgages so Academy can offer you a better deal. With flexible qualification guidelines, these loans are particularly designed to benefit first-time home buyers and buyers who don’t have perfect credit or a lot of money to put down.

A few common FHA-Insured Loans are:

  • FHA 203(b) Home Mortgage Loans for qualified buyers wanting to purchase or refinance a primary residence.
  • FHA 203(k) Renovation Loans for those wanting to buy a home, fix it up, and include all the costs in one loan, or those wanting to refinance what they owe on their mortgage and add the costs to remodel or repair their existing home.
  • FHA Energy-Efficient Mortgages for those wanting to make their home more energy-efficient.

What are the benefits of an FHA-Insured Loan?

FHA-Insured Loans offer the following features:

Low down payments (as low as 3.5% of the purchase price).
Fixed-Rate and Adjustable-Rate Mortgages available.
100% gift funds acceptable for down payment and closing costs.
No prepayment penalty.
Flexible qualification guidelines.
Who may benefit from an FHA-Insured Loan?

FHA-Insured Loans may be of particular benefit to buyers who:

  • Are buying their first home.
  • Don’t have a lot of money to put down.
  • Don’t have perfect credit and are worried about qualifying for a loan.
  • Want to keep their monthly payments as low as possible and/or are concerned about their monthly
  • Want to refinance a high-cost mortgage payments going up.
  • Are looking to finance one- to four-unit structures or approved condominiums.

What is a Conventional Mortgage?

A Conventional Mortgage is simply any mortgage loan that is not insured or guaranteed by the federal or state government. Conventional Mortgages typically require a higher down payment, usually 5%–20%. They also have higher income and credit score requirements than government loans.

Mortgage offers 3 -year

Conventional Mortgages can have a fixed interest rate or an adjustable interest rate.

Conventional Mortgages are also categorized as conforming or non-conforming. If a loan meets the underwriting requirements set forth by the government-sponsored entities Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, it is considered a conforming loan. If a loan does not meet all these requirements, it is considered a non-conforming loan.

One of the main factors that determine whether a mortgage is conforming is the loan amount. Generally, a mortgage with a loan amount below $417,000 is considered conforming, whereas any loan amount above $417,000 is considered non-conforming, or a Jumbo Mortgage. Conforming limits may be higher in areas of the country with more expensive housing; for example, the conforming limit is $625,500 in Alaska and Hawaii. Jumbo Mortgages usually have a higher interest rate because they carry greater risk.

help first time home buyer