North Carolina is home to thousands of military veterans and those who are still serving, and many may dream of buying a home of their own to put down roots. If that sounds like you, the good news is buying a home that you can afford in North Carolina doesn’t have to be out of reach. Follow these 3 tips for military buyers so you can buy the home of your dreams and enjoy it for years to come.
Be realistic about your needs and budget
When buying your first home, especially if you may be putting down roots for the first time in quite a while, it can be tempting to look for a glamorous dream home right off the bat and max out your budget. But buyer beware, buying a home that costs too much will set you up for financial struggles down the road. It is important to be realistic about your budget and how much home you can afford to buy. A good rule of thumb is to look for a home that will cost no more than one third of your monthly budget. Talk to your lender before you set your budget to get an idea of what you might be able to afford. When you buy a home you can comfortably afford, you set yourself and your family up for future success!
Enlist the help of a real estate agent
Whether you have lived in the area you want to buy in for years or are a newcomer to the neighborhood, few people know more about locations and buying markets than a qualified real estate agent. As a buyer, a real estate agent’s expertise costs you nothing, and what this professional brings to the table is substantial. Real estate agents will:
- Help you make the most out of your budget by showing you homes you can afford
- Make the most out of your time by scheduling home showings
- Show you homes that qualify under the standards of VA mortgages
- Help you navigate the purchase process
- Assist you in negotiating with sellers and provide a buffer between you and the sellers agent
- Advocate for your best interests throughout the home buying process
Leverage your resources
The good news for military buyers is that there are ample resources that can help make home ownership possible whether you are still serving your country or a veteran. The VA Home Loan is a great way to buy a home if you and the home you are buying meet certain qualifications and if you don’t have a large down payment saved up. In addition, the NC Housing Finance Agency offers home ownership resources to help you get educated on the home buying process, and affordable mortgage products to help you buy the home that is right for you and your family, including special options for military veterans.