Real Estate: Is it the Same American Dream It Use to Be?

Danielle AlexanderBlog Series Vol. 1, Danielle Alexander

Home Sold ImageBuying real estate is one of the best investments you can make. Interest rates are below 4.00%, you can purchase a home with little to no money down, if you are a first time home-buyer there are several grant programs you can take advantage of where the state of Ohio will “Gift” you your down payment!

Are you Active Military (Veteran), school teacher, nurse, police, fireman? Congratulations there’s special financing available just for you as a part of the “Ohio Heroes Program.”

Recent college graduate? Awesome, there is a loan program available for you too! “Grants for Grads” There are more buyers than homes right now which is a sign of a healthy housing market in central Ohio. If you have a home to sell, you need to put your home on the market now! According to the latest Central Ohio housing market report published by Columbus REALTORS (December 2015), homes spent an average of 54 days on the market in November 2015. According to the Ohio Association of REALTORS 93 percent of central Ohio REALTORS describe the current housing market as moderate to strong. Over the next year, 81 percent of REALTORS expect home prices to rise 0-5 percent.

Are you ready to buy a home but not sure where to start? Here are 10 steps to take to prepare for home ownership:

1. Decide How Much Home You Can Afford. Generally you can afford a home valued at three times your gross income.

2. Develop Your Home Wish List. Prioritize the features you want in your home.

3. Select where you want to live. Identify at least 3-4 communities you are interested in taking into account amenities you are looking for; recreation, shopping, schools, close proximity to work and freeway.

4. Start Saving. Do you have enough money saved to qualify for a mortgage? You should have a minimum of 5% of the sales price as savings. Your mortgage lender will educate you on the various loan programs you will qualify for and tell you exactly how much cash you will need to invest for your home purchase.

5. Get your credit in order. Obtain a copy of your credit report to make sure it is accurate and correct any errors immediately.

6. Determine Your Mortgage Qualification. How much of a mortgage do you qualify for? You will want to know what loan programs make the most sense for you and your monthly budget. Your mortgage lender will help you determine the best program for your individual needs.

7. Get Pre-Approved. Organize all the documentation your lender will need. W-2 for the last two years, current month’s pay stub, your last two months of bank statements. *Get pre-approved first before you begin looking at homes*.

8. Weigh other sources of your down payment. Consult with your mortgage lender to see if you qualify for down payment assistance programs. Research state and local government agencies on down payment assistance programs for your area.

9. Calculate the cost of home ownership. This should include your total monthly mortgage payment; principle and interest, taxes and home insurance, maintenance, utilities and community association fees if applicable.

10. Contact a REALTOR. You need to hire an experienced agent who can guide you through the entire home buying process.

Danielle Alexander | Realtor |Coldwell Banker King Thompson

To Buy To Sell Call Danielle!


To learn more about Danielle, check out her bio.

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