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Managing Money to Buy a Home

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When you purchase a home, you get more than four walls and a roof. You’re also buying independence, privacy, and security for your family! A home is likely the biggest purchase you’ll ever make, so make sure you’ve covered all your bases before you buy. Here are some simple steps to get started.

GRAB YOUR PARTNERS, HERE WE GO
A home is typically your largest asset, so you better find a money partner you can trust! At SDFFCU we’re proud of the way we save you money – and financial headaches. We have helped thousands of people buy homes without the hassle, while saving costs. Next up: Partnering with the right realtor can really improve your buying experience. Ask friends and family for references, then interview at least three realtors. A little time up front can save you a lot of frustration in the end. Good questions to start with: What is your process for showing houses? What do you charge for your services? Look for an experienced Realtor.

KNOW THE SCORE
Sit down with your SDFFCU Mortgage Loan Officer to review your credit report. Why so
important? The better your credit score, the lower your closing costs. If your score needs
improvement, work with your partner on a plan to improve your results. (A better score also
means access to more mortgage programs.)

SAVE FOR A DOWN PAYMENT
To get the best possible rates on a mortgage, you need a down payment of 20% of the
asking price. Of course other options are available. Low down payments starting at only 3%
are available through your SDFFCU mortgage loan officer. Start saving now to get the best
deals around. SDFFCU can help you with a savings plan.
Here’s a good way to save and determine if a mortgage is right for you: Say you want to buy
a home that will cost $1,500 dollars a month and your rent is currently $800 a month. The
difference is $700 a month. For the next year, stash that $700 a month in a savings
account. You’ll know that you can make the mortgage payment – and you’ll have another
$8,400 for your down payment!

SEAL OF (PRE) APPROVAL-THIS IS NOW A “MUST”
There are more costs to owning a home than your mortgage, including taxes and insurance.
In San Diego and Riverside Counties, expect to pay 1.25% of the purchase price annually.
To determine insurance costs, contact your agent. Your SDFFCU loan officer can help you
understand other costs as well.

Once you’ve determined you can afford your new budget, get pre-approved! SDFFCU has
a quick and simple process that gives you peace of mind as you begin negotiations on
home prices. Pre-approval also lets your realtor and potential sellers know that you are
serious (and qualified). Call or email us today to find out how.

WHAT YOU WANT (VS. WHAT YOU NEED)
Before you go house shopping, make a list of your “must haves,” your “nice to haves,” and
any items that qualify as deal breakers. Buying a home can be a very emotional experience.
Preparing your list ahead of time can help you keep your priorities in order. It really can be
as simple as “Which house best matches our desires – and our budget?”

DO YOUR HOMEWORK
You’re not just buying a house – you’re moving into a neighborhood. So visit the neighbors.
Go for a walk. Play in the park. Stop by in the evening as well as the afternoon. Still look like
the perfect home for you?
Don’t forget a home inspection. Having an expert look at the house before you buy is a
smart move. The price you pay for an inspection can save you a lot of frustration – and
thousands of dollars.

PROTECT YOUR FAMILY
A house is a wonderful asset – but it can be a burden if something should happen to one of
your family’s wage earners. Consider life insurance as a financial safety net for anyone you
may leave behind. Consider this rule of thumb: Purchase a policy that will pay all of your
current debt, especially your mortgage, and replace your annual income for at least five
years. Continue with your savings plan. Now that you are a homeowner you will want to
protect your family from undue financial stress. Be prepared. We recommend maintaining
your liquid savings account by keeping a balance of a minimum of 6 months mortgage
payments in your savings at all times. This plan will help you in times of unexpected
expenses.

SIT BACK, RELAX AND ENJOY YOUR NEW HOME
You put in the time and research to find the perfect home to fit your needs and your budget.
And you chose the perfect financial partner – SDFFCU – to help you!

CONGRATULATIONS – YOU DID IT!
At SDFFCU we’re here to help you get where you want to be. Our door is always open to
answer your questions about the home buying process. Feel free to contact one of our
mortgage loan officers at any time, about anything.
Remember – as your financial partner SDFFCU is always available to help. Contact
us whether you are buying a home, a car or truck, an RV, or whatever your financial
needs may be.

WE ARE HERE FOR YOU!
All Types of Home Loans are Available. Ask us about:
First Time Home Buyers Purchases and Refinances
FHA Loans & VA Loans Low or No Closing Costs Plans
Home Equity Line of Credit Loans
Fixed Rate Second Mortgage Loans

SDFFCU OFFERS HOME LOAN SERVICES TO MEET YOUR NEEDS:
Mortgage Dept: 619-283-5477 x 25 Consumer Loans: 619-283-7026
Main Office Tel: 619-283-5477 Toll Free: 800-973-3328

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