Q:

What is on a homebuyer's checklist?

A:

Quick Answer

A homebuyer's checklist includes checking his credit score, reducing his debt, saving at least 20 percent of the home purchase price for a down payment and calculating a wide range of expenses, says Geoff Williams for U.S. News & World Report. Loan pre-approval is another item to check off the list, explains Trulia.

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Full Answer

With loan pre-approval, a homebuyer gets a good idea of how much money he realistically qualifies for, and home sellers and real estate agents know a homebuyer is serious, reports Trulia. To meet with a mortgage loan officer, a homebuyer should have federal income tax records for the most recent two years, paycheck stubs, canceled checks for bill payments, and if applicable for the mortgage lender, credit card information and student loan data, notes Williams.

The checklist should account for finding desirable areas to live in, explains Trulia. Homebuyers should look at schools, crime and job commute times, for example. The tax rates in various neighborhoods can also be a critical factor, states Williams.

Homebuyers also need to decide on what features of a home are necessary and which are expendable, according to Trulia. After a homebuyer is pre-approved and knows where he wants to live, his checklist should include enlisting the help of a real estate agent.

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