If you hope to take out a mortgage in the near future, it’s important to do your research and plan. You’ll need to learn about current mortgage rates, rules, and requirements as well as the best techniques to make the most of your credit score. Before you start applying for a home loan, be sure to consider these facts:
What to Consider
1. You can qualify for some types of mortgages with a credit score below 600, but most homebuyers need scores of 620 or higher. Some government-backed loans allow you to have a lower score when you supply a bigger down payment. If you have a score above 720, you’re likely to pay a substantially lower interest rate.
2. A recent development is that banks can now average the credit scores of two individuals who apply for the same mortgage. For example, perhaps a couple with sufficient combined income applies for a loan. One person has a score of 600 while the other scores 680, so the average is 640.
3. Current mortgage rates continue to fluctuate but remain higher than they were in 2021. Luckily for borrowers, interest rates fell significantly between October and December 2022. Fifteen-year loans have higher monthly payments but average rates are about 0.75 percent lower than those of 30-year mortgages.
4. In 2023, most homebuyers will need jumbo loans when borrowing more than $726,200. The limit is $1,089,300 in certain regions with above-average real estate prices. Jumbo loans offer lower rates than conventional mortgages, but they require down payments of 10 percent or more (varies by lender).
5. The median American homebuyer makes a down payment of 13 percent, yet most types of mortgages currently have minimum down payment amounts ranging from zero to 3.5 percent. For instance, you’d probably need at least $5,250 to buy a $175,000 house with a conventional loan.
6. When you read about mortgages or see advertisements for them, keep in mind that actual interest rates are different for each borrower. An advertised rate could change depending on the borrowed amount, your credit score, day-to-day fluctuations, and any points you might pay.
7. Your credit score may fall if numerous lenders, insurers, or other companies check your record. Fortunately, the impact is much smaller when all of the inquiries happen over no more than two weeks. If an application is denied, try not to wait a long time before applying elsewhere.
Contact a Professional
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