Credit plays an important role in your ability to secure a home loan and to qualify for a low-interest mortgage. However, many first-time homebuyers aren’t aren’t sure about the exact relationship between credit scores and mortgages.

This doesn’t come as much of a surprise considering the many factors that go into your credit score and into your lender’s decision to approve you for a mortgage. So, in this article, we’re going to cover three commonly asked questions that homebuyers have about credit scores and how they’re used by mortgage lenders to determine your eligibility for a home loan.

Will my credit score go down if I check my credit report?

If you’re thinking of buying a home in the near future, one of the first things you’ll want to do is check your credit. However, if you’ve heard that some credit inquiries briefly lower your credit score you might be hesitant to find out.

This common misconception stems from the fact that taking out new lines of credit results in a temporary decrease in your credit score. The difference between checking your credit and a credit inquiry is simple: a credit check you can access for free online through a service like Credit Karma, whereas a credit inquiry is performed by a lender or creditor with whom you’ve applied for credit.

In short, checking your credit score online won’t affect your score. In fact, the major credit bureaus are required to allow you to check your credit for free once per year.

Can I get a loan with low credit?

Increasing your credit score is a lengthy process that requires careful financial management. Many people who have had difficulties paying off bills, loans, and credit cards will have to rebuild their credit. Or, if you’re young and don’t have a diverse history of credit payments, you’ll be starting from scratch to build your score.

If you’re hoping to get an FHA (first-time homeowner loan), the lowest your score can be is 580. However, that doesn’t mean you should always take a loan with a low credit score. When you don’t have a good credit history, lenders will seek other ways to guarantees their investment. This comes in the form of higher interest rates or PMI (private mortgage insurance) which you’ll have to pay on top of your monthly home insurance and mortgage payments.

Will applying for a home loan affect my credit?

Simply stated, yes. However, applying for a loan or get preapproved is considered a credit inquiry and won’t leave any lasting negative on your credit score. Making several inquiries within a short period of time, however, can significantly lower your score, so choose your inquiries wisely. And, be sure to monitor your credit score on a monthly basis so you have an idea of where you stand along the road to applying for a home loan.

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The real estate market offers no guarantees for house sellers. Thus, even if your home boasts lots of great features and is available at an appealing price, there is no guarantee that your residence will sell quickly.

Ultimately, a home seller must act aggressively to promote his or her residence to the right groups of buyers. With an aggressive approach to the home selling journey, an individual can boost the likelihood of enjoying a quick, profitable house selling experience.

There are many things that you can do to stay aggressive as you strive to sell your home, and these include:

1. Study the Local Housing Market

The local housing market may fluctuate. Fortunately, a home seller who analyzes the local real estate sector closely can gain the insights that he or she needs to speed up the house selling cycle.

Take a look at houses as they are added to the real estate market in your city or town. By doing so, you can see how comparable houses stack up against your residence. And if you find that your home pales in comparison to similar residences, you can perform myriad house upgrades.

Furthermore, if you find that the price of your home is much higher than the prices of comparable houses in your area, you may want to lower your residence’s price. This may help you stir up lots of interest in your home from buyers, as well as accelerate the home selling journey.

2. Maintain Your Home’s Appearance

You may have already dedicated substantial time and resources to upgrade your house’s interior and exterior. However, if you fail to keep your house looking great, it may be tough to achieve your desired home selling results.

Perform regular house cleaning both inside and outside your residence. This will ensure that your house boasts amazing curb appeal. Also, once buyers enter your residence, they may fall in love with your residence’s interior.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent usually has a simple goal: to help a seller seamlessly navigate the house selling journey. Therefore, if you collaborate with a real estate agent, you can work with a diligent housing market professional who will do everything possible to help you succeed.

Oftentimes, a real estate agent will meet with a home seller and craft a personalized house selling strategy. He or she then will put this plan into action and promote a seller’s residence to prospective buyers. Plus, if a seller receives an offer to purchase his or her house, a real estate agent will help this individual review the homebuying proposal. And if a seller decides to accept the offer to purchase, a real estate agent will make it easy for this individual to finalize his or her home sale.

Ready to add your residence to the housing market? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can take an aggressive approach to streamline the home selling journey.

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