house graphSo you think you’ve found the perfect home, but is it perfect for you? The path to actually buying it can prove otherwise if you haven’t done your homework. The Austin Real Estate market is very strong. Interest rates are low, the current unemployment rate is 5.1% (a six-year low) and companies are consistently moving in creating more opportunities.

Austin Texas Homes for Sale

There is a consistent supply of willing and able buyers in Austin that for the most part, still out number the amount of properties for sale. The demand as we have moved into the fall season has remained high for Austin housing. Finding the perfect house today without knowing if it is affordable, may only be setting yourself up for disappointment. After all, if you can’t afford it…the house is not so perfect anymore.

Housing Financial Criteria

Whether purchasing a first home or simply want to move to another, you need to do some homework and come up with a plan. Everyone has an idea of what they want to spend on a home, but many don’t know how that translates in terms of how much of a house they can actually afford. Your debt to income ratio is only part of the formula. The other consideration that lenders look at is your credit score. Many buyers I talk to have no idea what their credit score is. Credit scores run between 300 and 850. A credit score of 650 – 699 is generally considered moderate, while numbers between 700 and 850 are considered good to excellent. The combination of the debt to income ratio, credit score and available down payment will determine what loan programs are available, what the interest rate will be and ultimately how much you will qualify for.

Housing Lifestyle Criteria

A lender will explain what your options are and then we will talk about them. I always try and keep lifestyle in the mix to help you decide what you want to spend. You may need to be at the high end of what you can qualify for if living near Downtown Austin is important. Likewise, if you are planning to expand your family or will need to purchase a car and know your monthly expenses are going to increase as a result; you may want to spend less. Once you do your homework, you will find a home that fits your financial and lifestyle criteria. It will be the perfect home – that is perfect for you.

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