Buying a home and taking on a mortgage is a big financial decision, one most of us will make only a few times in our lives. No matter where you are on your journey, whether you’re currently looking for a home, shopping for a mortgage, or just curious for your future, we have tools and information to help you confidently make good decisions to reach your goals.
This week, we’re launching our latest effort to help you navigate the market, ask the questions, and take the steps that will help you to find the mortgage that’s right for you. We’re calling it Owning a Home.
We’re committed to making it easier for consumers to shop for and get a good mortgage. Here are five ways that Owning a Home can help you find the best mortgage for your situation:
1. Owning a Home helps you know what to expect.
Shopping for a mortgage isn’t like shopping for a new toaster. You can’t easily go online and double check to make sure you’re getting the best price (or, in the case of mortgages, the best interest rate). Owning a Home lets you see real data on what current interest rates look like for your situation.
With a simple visualization, you can tell what kind of rates real lenders are offering to borrowers in your situation, and quickly understand what a good deal looks like for you. Armed with this information, you can plan how much to spend on a new home and know what to expect when you talk to lenders.
2. Owning a Home helps you understand your loan options.
It might seem like real estate agents, bankers, and mortgage brokers speak a foreign language. They use words like “ARM” and “principal” as if you should already know them, and it can be frustrating. Owning a Home demystifies this jargon, so you can have conversations with your lender confidently. We help you understand how the choices you make about your loan will impact your costs and risks.
3. Owning a Home lets you imagine new options.
You can explore different options to see which might be the best fit for you. You can see the factors lenders consider when determining your interest rate, like down payment and credit score. Because the tool is interactive, you can start to see how even small changes affect your interest rate. Considering saving up for a higher down payment before buying? See how different down payment amounts affect your interest rate. Credit score lower than you like? See how your rate could be lower with a higher credit score, and consider if it’s worth it for you to improve your credit before buying a home.
4. Owning a Home is there for you from start to closing.
Use these tools from the very start of your home buying process through to closing. Closing is the time when you dot the i’s and cross the t’s— it’s when you legally commit to your mortgage loan. To help you make sure you don’t miss anything important, we’ve created a detailed checklist and an easy-to-read guide to the forms you’ll be signing during closing.
5. Owning a Home helps you make smart choices to serve your own goals.
All of the tools and resources available on Owning a Home aim to give you the information you need to feel more confident throughout the entire home buying process. Our tools are intended to help you decide what kind of loan you want to get, find a good deal from a mortgage lender, and close like a pro. We’ll help you spot red flags and ask the right questions.
Safer mortgage markets for you
From our very first day as an agency, we’ve been working hard to improve your experience when it comes to purchasing and paying for your home. We developed new forms that make it easier to compare your loan options, using your input to guide our decisions. We’ve also been working to make the market safer, cleaning up bad practices and requiring good ones. In addition, we’ve worked to get responses to your mortgage complaints, and we’ve explored ways to make the closing process less painful.