Here are the 7 tell-tale signs that you’re ready to buy your first home:
1. You have saved enough for the down payment:
Most people think the biggest hurdle to overcome when buying a house is saving up for that down payment. You normally need to save at least 5% of the purchase price as a down payment. This shows that you have some of your own money invested in the house, which gives the lender some comfort that you will protect your investment. Having the ability to save money is a great first sign you might be a future homeowner soon!
2. You have good credit
Having perfect credit isn’t a requirement to get approved for a mortgage in Canada. However, if your credit score is at least 650, your odds of getting approved are much higher. If your score is at least 620, you may qualify for a mortgage with as low as a 5% down payment. Lenders look at more than just your credit score, however. If you have never missed a single payment on a credit card, loan, even a phone bill in the past 12 months this is a great sign that you’re more likely to qualify.
3. You can afford the mortgage payment
The amount of home you qualify for is tied to your debt to income ratio. It’s typically recommended to keep your spending no higher than 35% of your monthly income on housing-related expenses, including your mortgage, property taxes and heating. If you’re renting a home, chances are that your mortgage payment will be close to what you’re paying in rent. You can use our online calculator to find out what your mortgage payment will be and how much you can afford.
4. You have steady employment
If you have been in the same job with the same employer for at least 1 year, you’re financially stable enough to have a mortgage. Having steady employment history is a good indicator that you’re ready to buy a house.
5. You don’t plan on moving to a new city anytime soon
We all dream of living somewhere different. Buying a home financially-speaking is a better alternative than renting, but only if you plan on staying put for at least 3 years. If you don’t have any immediate plans on changing cities, then buying is a great option for you. There’s a chance that the home you buy today will increase in value in a few years as well, so buying is a great investment.
6. You have kids, or kids on the way
If you already have children, you most likely want to settle down into a nice neighbourhood. Kids don’t like moving away from their school and friends, so buying a home is a logical choice as well and helps your family put down some roots.
7. You’re tired of renting
Renting is financially exhausting. You are basically paying someone else’s mortgage payment, hurting your own bank account to help theirs. You may even want to spruce your place up a bit, but as a renter, you may not be able to and are reconsidering putting your own resources into something you don’t own. If you are feeling the need to “upgrade,” it may be a sign that it is a good time to buy.
If you think a few or all of these describe where you are at in your life, give us a call! Let’s put you on the path to home ownership.