How do I know how much I can borrow?
First, use our How much mortgage would I qualify for? calculator to get an idea of your borrowing limit. When you are ready to start the process, you can apply for a mortgage loan and get pre-approved for a loan. Pre-approval will give you a good understanding of how much house you can afford before you start shopping for homes, making the process much more efficient. Typically, you can purchase a home with a value of two to three times your annual household income.
What if my credit is “less than perfect”?
Don’t let past credit problems keep you from applying for a loan. In addition to your credit history, lenders will also take into account your ability and willingness to pay in the future. Talk to a Progress Bank mortgage lender if you have concerns or questions.
How much do I need for a down payment?
There is no “set in stone” amount for down payment costs. With some first-time homebuyer programs, you can put as little as 3.5% down. Remember that if you have a down payment that is less than 20% of your total home loan, private mortgage insurance (PMI) may be required.
Will a mortgage help me save money on taxes?
There are three types of mortgage and homeowners costs that may be tax-deductible:
- Discount points
- Interest paid on your home loan or home equity loan
- Property taxes
Consult your tax advisor for more advice on the tax advantages of home ownership.
How do I make an offer when I find a home that I like?
When you are ready to make an offer on a home, your real estate agent will help guide you through the process. Usually, making an offer on a home is done by submitting a formal offer letter to the owner(s) or their agent(s) with the amount of your offer and any conditions of the offer. Here are a few things to consider before you make an offer:
- Does the asking price compare well with similar homes in the area?
- What is the condition of the home? Is it ready to move in, or will you have to spend substantial money on upgrades?
- How long has the home been on the market? If it’s been on the market for a while, the owner might be more motivated to make a deal.
How do I know which mortgage is best for me?
Visit Progress Bank and talk to one of our mortgage lenders to discuss your borrowing options. We will ask many questions, including:
- How long do you plan to stay in your home?
- Are you planning to pay cash for your down payment and/or closing costs?
- Are you comfortable with an adjustable interest rate, or would you prefer one that remains the same throughout the life of the loan?
We will spend time to understand more about you—your lifestyle, your goals, your concerns. After getting to know your budget and needs, we will be able to recommend the best mortgage loan for you.
How long does it take to close on a home?
For many reasons, it can take several days and sometimes weeks from the time you apply for your loan to the time the house is officially yours. At Progress Bank, we strive to get through the process as quickly as we can. We will work with you and the other parties involved to set a timeframe that meets your needs.
What should I expect at my closing?
Typically, a loan closing is a meeting that takes place in the closing agent’s office. This meeting may include you, the seller(s), attorneys, real estate professionals, builder’s representative, lender’s representative and the closing agent. Here’s what to expect and/or have ready to go:
- Paperwork. You will review and sign many documents. Make sure each one is explained and you are clear about what you’re signing.
- Cashier’s check. You may need to bring a cashier’s check to pay for the closing costs, down payment and other charges if applicable.
- Escrow account. You may set up an escrow account at the closing to cover costs for property taxes and insurance.
- After all the paperwork is signed and the transfer of funds is complete, you walk away with the keys to your new home.