With no state income tax and major cities like Dallas, Houston, and Austin, Texas is ideal for buying an investment property or a family home. But between hiring the right real estate agent and searching for affordable mortgage rates, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed during the home-buying process. Before making the jump, it’s important to understand the process of buying a house in Texas so you can make informed decisions. With that in mind, here are five steps to take before buying a house in Texas.
Whether you’re an experienced real estate investor or a first-time home buyer in Texas, research is a necessary step before buying a home. Start by assessing your current financial situation, including your debt, monthly expenses, and savings. Obtain your credit report, review your credit score, and consider how much you can afford to pay in monthly mortgage payments.
Additionally, check websites, newspapers, and magazines for local real estate listings. Take note of homes you’re interested in, changes in asking prices, and how long they tend to stay on the market. Gaining a sense of housing trends in specific areas can help you later in your search for your next investment property or dream home.
Determine Your Budget
If you have a moderate amount of debt and you’re planning to make a 20-percent downpayment, lenders generally recommend searching for a home that costs no more than three to five times your annual household income. However, it’s important to determine your budget based on your current financial situation. To find out how much you’ll be able to afford, try entering your household income and savings information into Discover’s Affordability Calculator.
Get Preapproved for Your Mortgage
Next, you’ll need to find out how much you can afford to spend on your new home. Before starting your search, make sure to get prequalified for a mortgage. To get prequalified, provide your local mortgage banker with your financial information, including your income, savings, and investments. Your banker will review your financial information and let you know how much they can lend you. Later, you can submit your W-2 statements, paycheck stubs, and bank account statements to verify your financial status and get preapproved for credit.
If you’re interested in purchasing an investment property, Bay Mountain Capital can help. Since 2008, BMC has provided financing to real estate investors, offering loans and securing investments for 2,000 residential and commercial properties. BMC utilizes a commonsense, streamlined approach to investment properties in major real estate markets in Texas, ensuring a fast, easy, and successful transaction. To find out more about hard money loans, visit Bay Mountain Capital at 3710 Rawlins St #1390m Dallas, TX, 75219, or call (214) 953-3188.
Hire a Real Estate Agent
If you’re a first-time homebuyer, hiring the right real estate agent is essential. In addition to providing valuable information on homes and neighborhoods that isn’t easily accessible to the public, real estate agents offer knowledge of the home buying process, negotiating skills, and familiarity with different areas.
Before hiring a real estate agent, make sure to perform a background search. Go Look Up, a free information database, can reveal potential red flags about different real estate agents in your area, including arrest records, mugshots, and background checks. Performing a background search will give you the peace of mind of knowing you’re working with someone that you can trust.
After getting preapproved for a mortgage and hiring a real estate agent, you can start touring homes in your price range. Consider using a house hunting checklist or taking notes on each home you visit. If you’re planning to visit multiple properties, taking pictures or videos can help you distinguish between each home later on.
Remember to take as much time as you need to find your dream home or next investment property. After narrowing down your list, work with your real estate agent to negotiate a fair offer based on comparable homes in the neighborhood.
After your offer is accepted, be sure to schedule a home inspection to check for issues that could end up costing you more than you bargained for. Although the home buying process can feel overwhelming, the proper research and preparation save you time and money in the long term.