Conventional, Fixed Rate Mortgages are Predictable
Historically, the safest mortgage has been the fixed rate mortgage. With a fixed rate mortgage, the home buyer knows what the monthly payment will be for the entire term. And there are no future surprises as there can be with adjustable rate mortgage.
It can be difficult for a home buyer to determine whether or not the home he or she wishs to purchase is affordable. Recently, mortgage lenders have been accused of being too generous with credit, allowing home buyers to purchase homes they obviously cannot afford.
If a home buyer focuses only on the monthly payment of principal and interest (especially with an adjustable rate mortgage), without considering the costs of taxes, insurance and home owners association dues, the total monthly cost can be frightening when a home buyer gets their first monthly mortage statement. And when the interest rate adjusts upward on an adjustable rate mortgage many home buyers are left with monthly payments they can no longer afford.
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Important Things to Remember When Buying a Home
- Never sign a document you do not understand fully.
- RESPA allows borrowers to see the HUD-1 a day before closing. Ask for it!
- Even though you may qualify for a big mortgage, avoid buying more home than you can comfortably afford.
- Prequalified is not the same thing as preapproved.
- Before growing too excited about a particular house, you should explore the entire neighborhood and the surrounding area.