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Prepare to Buy a Home in 2018 with Financial Planning Now

End of Year Financial Housekeeping (to prepare to buy a new home in 2018)

Are you considering buying a new home in the New Year? Before you do, you will want to take a close look at your current financial picture to determine if you’re ready to make this happen. There are a few things you can do – financial planning –  before 2017 comes to a close, and specifically before taxes are due in April 2018.

Most businesses conduct year end housekeeping just like many of us use the spring time to declutter and clean our homes after the long winter months. Starting the New Year with a clean financial slate helps ensure that things are ready to move forward organizations can achieve their goals. Financial housekeeping often involves maintaining records, reviewing finances, and more.

But financial planning –  housekeeping isn’t a task that only the corporate world needs to engage with. Especially if you want to buy a new home, ensuring your finances are as healthy as possible will give you the tools you need to make it happen.

By getting started now, you can alleviate stress and frustration in the future. So let’s take a look at a few of the things you start with to ensure you have a great and prosperous 2018.

Income & Tax Planning with a CPA

If you’re thinking about buying a home next year, whether you’re a first time home buyer or you’re planning to relocate, the first step should be income planning.

Having a trusted team in your court will help you long term not only with your ability to buy a home but with other major financial planning –  decisions that can impact everything from your children’s college education to your retirement. Start by meeting with a CPA or financial professional to help you determine where you are right now and what changes you can make to put yourself in a better financial position for the future.

While financial planning is more often associated with retirement, there is no such thing as too early to make these kinds of arrangements. Every small step you take today will impact financial decisions in the future as well as maintain your overall financial health.

But where do you start? Here are 4 simple steps:

  1. Determine your expenses.
  2. Evaluate your income sources.
  3. Look at your current financial picture.
  4. Create a way to track your progress

You don’t have to do this alone. At Prime Mortgage Lending, Inc. we can recommend Accountants, CPAs, or other financial professionals who can work with you one-on-one to determine the best long term financial planning. Your financial team can also work together to make sure every aspect, from savings to mortgage lending, will be a positive experience for you.

Consider Options for the Self Employed

Of course, here in Asheville we do have an added consideration for many of our citizens. While there are plenty of jobs in town, not everyone works in a traditional corporate or office environment. Asheville is made up of a significant number of self-employed people. And often it’s those individuals who feel neglected when it comes to financial health and the possibility of owning their own home.

At Prime Mortgage Lending, Inc., we want to make sure we are providing the right avenues for everyone in the Asheville area to move toward home ownership. We encourage self-employed residents to talk to us about their options before they start the process on their own.

There are some things that can make you a more attractive customer for lenders such as a healthy credit score, cash flow, and an established track record of success as a self-employed individual, typically 2 years.

You can read more about our recommendations for self-employed residents in this blog post from September.

Evaluate Your Credit Score

Speaking of credit scores, this is one aspect of your financial health that will be evaluated at many stages in your life. Before you decide to buy a home in 2018, you need to make sure that your credit score is where lenders want to see.

If buying a home in the New Year is at the top of your list, make sure that you keep your credit score in mind as you make large purchases at the end of 2017.

Lenders will look for a variety of things when determining eligibility for borrowers. They include:

  • Low balances.
  • History of on-time payments.
  • Mix of credit (such as car loans or credit cards)

We shared some details about the current changes in credit scores in this post (link) to help you better understand how to maintain a healthy financial picture when buying a home.

Before you buy a home, speak to a lender as your first step.  Make sure they evaluate your credit report, and to clean it up as much as possible. Pay any outstanding debt to raise your score as much as possible. You may also want to work closely with a credit repair specialist. At Prime Mortgage Lending, Inc., we can recommend professionals to help you with this process.

It Takes a Village

Ultimately, we want to make sure that our customers receive the quality and care of services they deserve. We believe that financial health and the ability to buy a home takes a village.

To this end, we want to be just one partner in a team of financial and real estate professionals to allow you to achieve your goals of home ownership in the coming years.

In August, we provided details about the partners who can work with you throughout the process. We took a closer look at the roles of real estate agents, lawyers, insurance brokers, credit repair specialists, and loan officers.

We also suggest that everyone select and work with a CPA who can shed light on the overall financial and tax picture each year.

Because it takes a village to ensure you’re where you want to be financially, we encourage you to start by calling the team at Prime Mortgage Lending, Inc. to learn more about our services, our partners, and how we can help get you into your next home in 2018.