10 Home Loan Tips to Help You Survive Your First Purchase

In the life of an adult, there are a few times that are commonly stressful. One is getting married, another is having a child, and buying a home is another.

While it might be exhilarating to search for homes and wander through open houses, the actual process of buying a house is enough to force someone to live in an apartment forever. From the waiting to the paperwork, there is nothing else quite like buying a home. Fortunately, there are a few home loan tips from the pros that can help you survive the stress, struggle, and moments of impatience.

10 Home Loan Tips to Help You Survive Your First Purchase - home loan image

1. Understand What You Can Afford

Having the biggest house on the block might be your dream, but being “house poor” is no fun. When you shop for your home, find something you can afford so you can enjoy living in your home. Learn what you can afford before you even begin to look so you do not fall in love with a house that you cannot afford.

2. Get Pre-Approved

Once you know what you can afford, it is wise to talk to a mortgage expert and get pre-approved for a home loan. This will give you credibility with sellers, especially if you want to see homes by appointment. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage is not the same process as getting a mortgage, it simply means that you have the income and credit rating that qualifies you for a mortgage of a pre-approved amount.

This home loan tip means that if you get into a bidding war with another buyer, having a pre-approval letter could give you an advantage.

3. Research Neighborhoods

If you find a home that seems like the price is just too good to be true, there is usually a reason – the neighborhood. It is amazing to consider that a similar home could range in value dramatically because of the neighborhood.

Prior to choosing a home, responsible home buyers will research neighborhoods, especially the schools, the public transportation options, the noise, and the nearby shops and other amenities. Check out how neighbors interact with each other. Look at how neighbors take care of their yards and where they park their cars. Some neighborhoods have associated fees, which can substantially add to monthly payments.

4. Prepare For The Added Costs

When you buy a home, there are more expenses than the down payment and the monthly payment. There are good-faith deposits, closing costs, inspection fees, homeowners insurance, and moving expenses. Make sure that you can afford all of them.

5. Decide What You Need Now

Many first-time home buyers will buy a house for the future. They will look for homes with several bedrooms, large yards, and plenty of places for children to play – even if they do not have any children.

Then, they have to take care of all of that space and make those massive mortgage payments. This leaves little time to consider having children because home expenses are so high.

There are also home buyers who will buy a very small home because there are just two people in the family at the time. But, then children come along and there simply isn’t time to find a bigger home and move because it is time-consuming and expensive to raise children.

Somehow, you will decide what suits your needs and your budget now and will keep you comfortable if your situation changes.

6. Get Involved In The Inspection Process

This can be overwhelming for the buyer and seller. The inspection is usually limited, so it can be helpful to ask for additional inspections. You will have to decide if the home is going to be safe to live in and if you can live in it without worrying about constantly having to repair it.

It is worth the extra money to pay for inspections for mold, insects, and radon. It is also worth it to pay for the inspector to evaluate the roof and crawl spaces. You should do everything in your power to attend all of the inspections. If you have a concern, ask the inspector to look at it the concern a second or third time.

7. Work With Professionals

It might be enticing to buy a home for a low cost or for free through your brother’s uncle’s best friend who sold houses in 1979 but still has his real estate license, but it certainly will not help you in the long run.

It might seem like a waste of money to pay a realtor, but good ones can actually make the process less stressful. Do not skimp here, or you will pay for it in other ways.

8. Save For A Down Payment And For A Problem

When you are saving for your down payment, you should also save for the first problem. Most expensive problems happen when you least expect it. The furnace might quit in the middle of a snowstorm. Your water heater will die when you are taking a shower on the coldest morning of the year. Your garage door opener breaks when you are late for work.

When you own a home, you have to pay to fix the problems that arise. And, they will arise. You just don’t know when. So, having money set aside to fix those problems makes them get fixed faster.

9. Learn How Mortgages Work

Mortgages are complicated. They are more than down payments and monthly payments. There are special home loans for first-time buyers. There are home loan programs for veterans and for people in special industries, like medicine. You can find out more from mortgage websites about the specific products that meet your needs.

Mortgages also come with options. There are ways to reduce down payments, but other costs increase. You can choose to get a 30-year mortgage or a 15-year mortgage. You can choose to have an adjustable interest rate or one that remains steady throughout the term of the loan. The options are plentiful and can be customized to meet your financial needs.

10. Learn Patience

The last of our home loan tips is to remember that the process of buying a home requires patience. When people hurry through it, problems usually happen. Others have been through the process and here is a handy stress free guide to moving. Finally, learn to work methodically and patiently through the process, so you are sure that everything will work out properly and in your best interest.

Ways to Save for a Mortgage Deposit

Ways to Save for a Mortgage Deposit - window box image


Buying your first home is a big step, and if you want to avoid falling into the trap of forever renting, there are several things you can do which will speed up the saving process. Here is a quick guide to get out of rented accommodation and to saving for a house deposit.

Whether you are looking to buy a luxury Meriton apartment or a simple two-storey home, it is likely that you won’t be able to save much money if you are renting. If you feel that you can sacrifice your personal space so that you can save, there are a few options for you.

One option is to move back in with your parents for a little while. However, only do this if you get on well with your parents and live close to them. If moving in with them will add another hour or so to your work commute, it’s hardly worth it more the extra travel expenses. Talk to them about how much you will stay, what you will contribute towards rent and how you will help out around the house.

It is also possible to sub-let your spare room and get a lodger. This will help subsidize the cost of your home and allow you to gain control of your finances and save for a deposit. Before you start searching for a new flatmate to move in, you will need to talk to your current landlord and see if they are happy with what you are planning. They may agree to either of the following options:

  • Advertise commercially for a new housemate and reduce your rent
  • Allow you to advertise and sub-let the spare room in your rented accommodation

Either way, you will be saving money on your rent and able to put more away. Be strong, and remember that this extra cash isn’t supposed to be for extra fun and set up a direct debit to go straight into your savings.

Ways to Save for a Mortgage Deposit - lounge room image


If neither of the above are options for you, it’s probably time for you to look for a cheaper place to live. Ask around and see if any of your friends have a spare room that they are willing to rent out for a few months – remember to talk to them about rent, bills and what you will do around the house before agreeing to anything. If you have no friends with a spare room, then there are loads of websites available which advertise rooms in shared houses, such as:

A house share will be much cheaper than renting a house or apartment all by yourself, as you will be splitting the cost of the house between several people. This should enable you the wiggle room to save more money and, eventually, put a deposit down for your own home!

It can be difficult moving into someone else’s space and living with them, especially if they are family or close friends and you are used to living alone. Remember that they are probably feeling the tension too, so do your best to help around the house and not make a mess!

What Practical Help Can I Give My Child When They Buy A Home?

practical help to buy a home - dream home image

Picture credit

For the past hundred years or so, children have always ‘had it better’ than their adults had it at the same age. But when you look at the instability in the world right now, it’s clear to see that this isn’t necessarily the case anymore. And parents of young adult children have a lot on their plates – not just financially, but practically, too.

One of the perfect examples of this is the price of buying a home these days. The ratio between the average property price and average wage has never been bigger. Work hours are longer. And parents who want the best for their children will need to contribute a lot, in many different ways.

So, if you are wondering how best to help your child buy their first home, read on. We’ve pulled together a few ideas for you that should help you negotiate the major issues.


First of all, the best thing you can do with your kids is to help them understand the concepts of finances, mortgages, and interest from an early age. If you are new to this blog, please feel free to take a look around – we have hundreds of excellent advice for parents on teaching children about the value of money, and they can all help your child become financially literate and make better decisions.

practical help to buy a home - dream house image

Picture credit


Parents should always be involved in the planning stages when their kids want to buy a home. It’s especially true if you are – like many other parents these days – contributing some money towards it. So, go through their finances with them, and look at a mortgage calculator with down payment details to see if the home they love will be a viable purchase. Don’t forget, while mortgage calculation tools will give your child a rough guide of what they can afford, the lender they approach might feel differently about their finances. With this in mind, it might be worth helping your kids find a professional mortgage advisor who can work with them to find a home that fits them best.


There are various ways of helping your children out financially when they buy a home. You are allowed to gift them money each year, tax-free if below $14,000 (or $56,000 if both parents give to a child and their spouse), which a mortgage company will allow as a ‘gifted down payment.’ You can also offer a family loan – a sensible option if you want to teach your child a valuable lesson in lending and borrowing. This method means that your child gets a cheaper loan, while you can get your money out of a low-interest savings account and you could even charge your child slightly more to ensure you don’t lose any money. Finally, you can co-sign the mortgage. Using this method means you take away some of the financial obligations of buying the home – but bear in mind that you will then be under the lender’s microscope, too.

So, there you have it – any more tips to add? Feel free to let us now and join in on the conversation!



The New Home Financial: How To Make It Through

Moving into a new home is great, excitement bubbles over as you work where you’re going to move and start thinking about how you’re going to decorate it, but there are financial hurdles to get over along the way that all but the most rich need to spend time deliberating and worrying about. There are ways around this, ways that require perseverance and a willingness to learn. Sure, saving takes some time, and parting with that cash can be tough, but you need to see it as an investment, only then does it make it all worthwhile.

The Mortgage

Getting a mortgage can be an extremely demanding and painful process. You need to stack the card in your favour before going for one, otherwise you could be turned down, which is a stressful process. If you are turned down, there are places that can help and give you more advice such as at 1stukmortgages.co.uk/declined-or-refused-a-mortgage-advice. You should seek all the advice you can prior to the meeting and make sure you have saved up enough of a deposit. This will be the largest outgoing but don’t worry because you aren’t under pressure to save, just save bit by bit and as much as you can. Know what kind of properties you want and save accordingly.

Saving for a new home - buying a property image


Government Taxes

Don’t forget there are government taxes you may have to pay too, so don’t put everything into your housing deposit. Remember you are going to have to save up some extra money for this. The tax such as the stamp duty tax is a tax that varies depending on the price of the property. It is an non negotiable fee which you need to pay. You can calculate how much your duty will be here. You need to set this sum aside because you don’t want to be caught out and end up having to pay it out of cash reserves you have set aside for other things, such as renovation.


You’ll need spare cash for renovation. There will be many things in your new property that either need fixing up or changing to suit your own needs. Before you purchase the house you should get a building survey done, which will show you any issues that need to be rectified, Don’t be afraid to offer a lower price because of these issues. Or, ask them to sort the issues out before making an offer. They may take the financial hit or pay out for the work to be done themselves. Whatever they decide, it’s win win for you. You don’t want to end up with a property that has severe structural issues. Set aside money for the home, after you’ve viewed it you’ll know roughly how much you’ll need to spend to do what needs to be done. You don’t want to end up in the situation where you have spent all your money on the deposit with nothing left to buy shabby chic coffee tables and other furniture or make the necessary changes.

Mortgage Money Matters: Essential Steps Before Buying a Home

buying a home image

Pexels image

Buying a home is a huge step in your life. Some people do it as soon as they can, while others choose to wait or aren’t able to buy property for a long time. When the time finally comes that you’re considering it, it’s essential not to rush into the process. Property doesn’t come cheap, and most people can’t afford to pay in cash. The financial aspect of buying a home is the most important thing to think about. There are some big issues to consider before you make the leap and become a homeowner for the first time. Take these steps before you do anything.

Are You Financially Prepared?

In advance of making any moves towards buying a house, you need to check up on your financial situation. There are several things you need to think about to make sure you’re financially stable and ready to purchase a property. Of course, your income is important. Lenders will look at how much you earn to see what you can afford. However, you also need to remember that how you spend your money is important too. Your credit score can have an impact on whether you can secure a mortgage. And, of course, there’s a down payment and other costs to think about.

mortgage money matters - buying a home image

Pexels image

Work Out What You Can Afford

If you think you’re ready to buy a home, you need to think about what you can afford. What you think you can afford and what lenders think can be different. You might overestimate what lenders could be willing to give you. On the other hand, a mortgage lender might surprise you with their offer. You should try to think about your mortgage in terms of monthly payments. Take a look at how much you currently pay in rent and other costs. Of course, it’s also important to consider the size of your down payment.

Get Mortgage Advice

You might think you’re ready to jump straight into looking for a mortgage. However, before you go ahead, you should consider seeking some advice. You can get mortgage advice from a number of places. You might choose to use a mortgage broker like Mortgage Solutions or a similar service. You can also find mortgage information online, which allows you to read about mortgages for free and make comparisons. However, it’s often best to see someone in person so you can discuss your particular finances.

mortgage money matters - buying a home image

Pexels image

Remember the Extra Costs

Before buying a home, it’s essential to remember the extra costs involved. It’s not just the house itself that can cost you money. You may also need to pay for a variety of things during the buying process. For example, you might need a lawyer or to conduct a number of surveys on the condition or even the land boundaries of your property. It’s important to be aware of these extra expenses and prepare for them before you start looking for a home. Overestimating the costs is always better than underestimating.

There are lots of money matters to think about before purchasing property. Don’t leave it too late to consider them.