Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate | Los Feliz Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

I think you’ll agree with me. There are few things in life as intimidating as buying your first Los Feliz home. Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers was created to help prepare you with the knowledge needed to buy your first Los Feliz home, today you’ll learn more about mortgages and the difference between a local mortgage broker and a national company.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers article will also give you an in-depth look at getting prepared for the home buying process, and help relieve some of the tension that you may feel as you venture towards wrighting offers.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate | Los Feliz Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

Ready to go?
Now that we have established a good vibe to help you get started down the home buying process path, let’s dig a little deeper and get into the details involved throughout the mortgage process. The information below should help you feel more comfortable about your options and help you approach the real estate market with a breath of fresh air as an informed homebuyer.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate | Los Feliz Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

Lets start!
In order to purchase a home, you will need to know how you are paying for it. Since this will most likely be the largest monetary transaction in your lifetime up to this point, it’s highly probable that you will need to get a mortgage to pay for your first house. This may seem like common sense, but every Realtor has had those buyers who send them a list of homes to look at before they have even thought about this step. Yes, it happens often, it happens almost every day for me. People want to go out and look at homes before they deal with their finances because looking at homes is much more fun than talking to a mortgage lender, but it’s not the right way to start off.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate | Los Feliz Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

First things first!
You will need to find a mortgage lender who is highly skilled, understands your financial situation, and is easy to work with. You will be communicating extensively with this person over the period of time that you are under contract to purchase a property, so it’s important to choose someone who is professional, experienced, and most importantly competent. Most Realtors should be able to offer lender referrals. Joe Tishkoff, from Skyline Home Loans is our favorite lender resource. I’m unaffiliated from Joe and Skyline home loan’s team, and I’m grateful to work with him. I refer Joe in good faith as a gesture to help the loan close on time, with as little drama as possible from the mortgage company. Delayed closings are a nightmare for real estate professionals, and our clients.

Where I work in Los Angeles, people tend to prefer local mortgage lenders, because they are more accessible and can usually close quickly. Many of our local lenders have underwriters in the same building, and the loan file only goes through a few different people throughout the course of the transaction.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate For Sale | Los Feliz Top Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

Why is that important?
National mortgage companies are notorious for being difficult to deal with because the file can go through so many people’s hands, making the chance for a closing delay much higher, and that’s good news for nobody!

What do I do?
Do your research and find a lender with good reviews. If you use a reputable local lender like Joe Tishkoff, it can help to strengthen your contract offer, as opposed to using a national lender, because the listing agent won’t be as concerned about closing on time.

I recently had a buyer’s loan almost rejected four days before closing because the buyer had multiple forms of income, and the national loan company couldn’t figure out how to get the loan approved. Joe Tishkoff quickly got the buyers cross-qualified over a weekend and was ready to save the day just in case the loan fell apart.

Many first time homebuyers are intimidated to talk with a mortgage lender, so they put it off until the last minute. In reality, mortgage lenders would love to close a loan for you. A good lender will do everything that they can to help you save money while purchasing a home.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate For Sale | Los Feliz Top Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

Save me money?
Yep! Remember that you are paying the mortgage company for their services. You will have closing fees, most likely in the thousands of dollars, which you are paying to your chosen mortgage company for generating your loan. It’s a terrible feeling to work with someone who is nice at first, but turns out to be hard to get a hold of and bad at communicating important details, (like multiple forms of income could be an issue unless we submit the correct documentation). At the closing table, you will be giving the mortgage company a good chunk of money for preparing your loan. You want to work with someone who you feel deserves this money. There are some wonderful loan officers out there, as well some terrible ones. The loan officer that you choose can make or break your home buying experience.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate For Sale | Los Feliz Top Realtor

 

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

Tired of reading yet? It gets better!
The next step is to determine your price range. This is a crucial step to take before looking at homes online. Be smart when determining how much of a financial obligation you are willing to take on when buying a house. Just because you are approved for a certain amount does not necessarily mean that is your price range. Look at your finances and determine how much you are comfortable spending per month and work backwards from there. Everyone’s lifestyle is different. Comfort level is very subjective. If you have expensive hobbies that you enjoy like skydiving or scuba diving and you buy the maximum amount of house that your mortgage company will allow, chances are that you’re going to be strapped for cash when you want to do those extra things. Do you like to go out to dinner every night or cook at home? Do you like building a savings account for the future or do you already feel you have “enough” in the bank?

Spending up to your top limit is known in the industry as being “house poor.” Sure, you may have an amazing house and your friends and family will be impressed, but will you be financially tethered to it and unable to afford other things that you enjoy in life? For some people, this is okay as they spend all their time at home anyway. Be sure to assess your personal situation and determine where you want to be financially BEFORE you have signed the papers for your mortgage. Share your thoughts and feelings with your mortgage lender. They understand just how important those personal sentiments are, but only if you are open to discussing that part of your life.

Knowing your price range is also important when looking at homes online. If you start looking at homes in the $800,000 range, but you are only approved for $650,000, your going to have a hard time with what you see available on the market when you come down to that price. Every $50,000 marginal price increment has different things to offer. If you start your home search in the price range that you are actually going to purchase a home in, then you will not have to deal with the disappointment after comparing your home to those in higher price ranges. You can work your way up to a higher price range in the future, but start off in the price range where you are going to live right now. This is a much better way to search for a home.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate For Sale | Los Feliz Top Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

Ready to go!
Once you have determined your price range and found the mortgage lender you want to work with, remember to provide your Realtor with your lender’s information right away. A lender should write a property specific pre-approval letter for the particular home you’re going to write an offer on and NOT provide a general or generic letter. The reason? Why would you want to alert a seller that you are over qualified for a home you wish to write an offer on when you’re attempting to negotiate the best price possible? It’s easier for your lender to provide a general letter stating a loan amount but that might not serve you well when it comes time to negotiate whether you are slightly higher or lower than the figure on the letter with respect to the actual loan amount indicated on your written offer to purchase. Your lender can have it handy as you go through the process and just add the fresh date and address. Sure, it’s a bit more work but allows you to stay in touch with your lender while you’re shopping for a home. As you may know, rates can change over a period of months while shopping and that can affect your qualified loan amount.

The letter presented with your offer is the written proof that you are a legitimate homebuyer. As a Los Feliz Realtor, I am always impressed by first time homebuyers who email me that they are formally pre-approved to purchase and can provide me with their lender’s contact information so I can request a pre-approval letter, when the time is right. It shows maturity in how proactive they are as legitimate homebuyers.

Hint, hint…Read the last sentence above again 🙂

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate | Los Feliz Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers

When you have found the house that you want to purchase and are ready to put together a written offer, your pre-approval letter will need to accompany the offer. If you have not yet been formally pre-approved by a lender, your offer may get held up waiting on the letter and in a situation with multiple offers, this can be a deal breaker. Since you have already met with and chosen your mortgage lender and provided him or her with all of your qualifying information, go ahead and get this step taken care of right away. As a Los Feliz Realtor, I don’t take an offer seriously from a buyer if I represent the seller unless it’s packaged with an approval letter along with proof of funds (POFs) for the deposit and down payment.

It’s important to remember that there is a difference between a pre-qualification letter and a pre-approval letter. Ask Joe Tishkoff for a pre-approval letter, as it is a much stronger representation of your purchasing power. For more on the topic of lending, check out Joe Tishkoff’s article entitled 4 Areas Mortgage Lenders Consider Before Lending You Money.

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate For Sale | Los Feliz Top Realtor

Tips For First Time Los Feliz Homebuyers | Los Feliz Real Estate For Sale | Los Feliz Top Realtor

 Downtown Los Angeles Realtor

I’m a local real estate agent with Sothebys International Realty and It would be my pleasure to help you find the perfect property to call home in Downtown Los Angeles, or if you’re thinking about selling a house, condo, or multi-family building in, Los Feliz, Silver Lake, Atwater Village, Glassell Park, Mount Washington, or Downtown Los Angeles, it would be a privilege to help you get top dollar for the sale of your property.

Lets chat sometime. 310-913-9477 or contact me.