Save, save, save
First things first: You need to start a savings fund for your home purchase. “Home buyers should have at least 10 percent of the purchase price of the home in their savings account,” says Randall Yates, CEO, The Lenders Network. “In addition, lenders like to see at least two to three months’ worth of mortgage payments in reserves.”
There are also different types of mortgage programs available for new or low-income buyers that require a lower down payment, so be sure to research your qualifications for these programs while socking away the savings. Check out the 15 questions everyone should ask before buying their first home to make sure you are ready to get your set of keys.
Check your credit score
Doing so early into your home buying process gives you plenty of time to improve your score and fix any negative marks. A credit score over 740 is considered the ideal range for mortgages. A lower score won’t disqualify you for loan approval, but it can mean a higher annual percentage rate (APR)—and the lower your mortgage rate, the lower your monthly mortgage payment and overall amount of your home loan.