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Buying A Home/Mortgage

Nothing is quite as exciting as buying your first home. Whether it’s a suburban bungalow or an urban townhouse, buying a home is exhilarating. You know it’s a smart investment — instead of paying rent, you’re building equity and increasing your net worth.

With house values plummeting in many places, residential real estate has become a buyer’s market, meaning the buyer has the advantage in negotiating a lower sales price, and perhaps getting the seller to throw in other benefits as well. In addition, mortgage rates have hit new lows, so if you qualify for a loan, now may be a good time to take the plunge.

Before you go house-hunting, contact several lenders to find out how much they will loan you and at what rate. When you have a letter from a lender verifying how much they’re willing to loan, you can go house-shopping with greater confidence. Sellers and real estate agents will understand that you are a serious buyer, not just a “looker.”

Because interest rates are at historic lows, this may also be a good time to refinance an existing mortgage and lock in a lower rate. If you plan to stay in your house for many more years, a refinance can be a good idea. Over time, the savings can be substantial. Since there are fees involved with refinancing, you’ll want to calculate how long it will take you to break even on a refinance. Our Mortgages & Loans Financial Tools can help you crunch the numbers.

Products for this Life Stage:*

Create a safety-net.

Learn how term life insurance provides smart, limited-time protection for your family.

Here's More Help for House Hunters:

See how a mortgage changes your budget.

Drop a few new numbers into our Budget Calculator Tool and see how a mortgage can fit into your life.

Now see it helps build wealth.

WSLife.com's Net Worth Calculator can show you how home ownership helps you build wealth.

Western & Southern Life does not provide tax or legal advice. Please contact your tax or legal advisor regarding your situation.

*Products suggested for this Life Stage are not a specific recommendation or solicitation to purchase.

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Last Updated: 11/18/2015