Buying a House- Top Things To Know

For over 25 years the Law Office of William J. Reinhardt, Jr. has guided families on their Brooklyn NY home purchases as their real estate attorney. Here are some of the top things Buyers should know as they forge forward on their dream to own a home:

1. Don’t buy if you can’t stay put. Is it likely that you will not need to move for several years. If not,you will most likely not recoup the closing costs when you sell i a few years.

2. Take steps to improve your credit. Order your credit report a few months before you start your home search and make sure the facts are correct. If not, take steps with creditors that reported mistakes to assure that they make the corrections. There are companies that will help with this. I can recommend if necessary.

3. Only buy what you can afford. The rule of thumb is you can afford two and a half times your annual salary.

4. Large downpayment not needed. Can buy with as little as 3% down of your own money.

5. Get good  help from an experienced real estate broker as well as an experienced attorney who specializes in real estate transactions.

6. Compare mortgage deals for the best one. Many lenders will offer O points but give you a higher interest rate. Be careful not to get lured in with these offers. Usually the best deal is where you pay some up front money in points but are given a lower interest rate. Sure you will pay a little more at closing, but because you secured a lower interest rate, you will pay less in monthly payments each month. The savings will surpass the initial expense before you know it.

7. Get a pre-approval from a lender before beginning your home search. This is more than a pre-qualification letter, which is just a cursory review of information you state to the loan officer. A pre-approval is where the lender actually reviews your actual report, tax returns and bank statements. You will have more leverage in negotiations with sellers if you have this in place before you make an offer.

8. Ask real estate agent for comparable sales in the last three months. This should help you with strategy on making your offer.

9.  Hire a home inspector to check the house you make an offer on. They are trained to spot any serious issues that may exit at the house that you were unable to notice. The earlier in the process that this is done, the more likely that the can be presented to the seller for correction.

These are the top things to know. Many more issues arise in the process which will be addressed as needed. The key for many to a successful purchase is good representation. At the Law Office of William J. Reinhardt, Jr. I have been guiding families in New York and New Jersey on their purchases for over 25 years.

If you would like my guidance on your potential transaction, just send me an e-mail at or simply subscribe to my blog for further advice.

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