Here are six ways a person can financially prepare to purchase a new home. First, thoroughly evaluate your finances and calculate how much of your monthly income you can afford to set aside for a mortgage. Bankrate Inc. offers online calculators to help you figure out how much you can pay each month, which experts say should not be more than 30 percent of your gross monthly income. Second, set aside an additional amount each month to cover other costs, such as repairs, utilities, and homeowner association fees. Experts say that if you cannot do without this money now, you will not be able to part with it when you are a homeowner. Third, be able to pay at least 20 percent for the down payment in order to get the lowest interest rate and avoid having to pay private mortgage insurance (PMI), and also set aside money to pay closing costs. Next, if your interest rate is not already there, work to bring your rate into the 720 to 850 range in order to receive the most favorable interest rate. Fifth, prepare for lenders’ thorough investigation of your finances by pulling together at least three months of bank statements, pay stubs, and at least two years of income tax filings. And finally, ask the lender to assess how much you can borrow. With this pre-approval statement, you will have a solid indication of how much you can spend. | Read More

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