Buying a home is an exciting milestone in anyone’s life. When you own your own home, you can make it truly yours. You can paint rooms, install new flooring, change light fixtures — you can even knock down walls. In addition to having a place to call home and make memories, you will also be building equity. While home buying is exhilarating, it can also be pretty overwhelming. That’s where we come in. Our mortgage loan officers work with members from the first step to the last (and often beyond). Before you start your journey, prepare with these steps below.
- Get pre-qualified for a mortgage
The first step of the home buying process is getting pre-qualified for a mortgage loan. We’ll help you with that, of course, but you can prepare by checking your credit report, planning your budget and gathering all the documents you’ll need – like one month’s pay stubs, W-2 forms from the past two years, bank statements from the past two months and your most recent tax return. Once you’ve got all that covered, it’ll be time to apply for a mortgage loan pre-qualification with OCCU.
- Start your home search
Here comes the fun part: looking for a home. Before you start your search, jot down a list of all your wants and needs. To help, try using the checklist from Home Buying 101. Then, search for a realtor that you trust and tell them everything you decided when making your list of needs and wants. You’ll work with them throughout the search, but if you have any questions at, all our mortgage loan officers will be happy to help.
- Make an offer on the home
Once you’ve found a house that feels like home, it’s time work with your realtor to make an offer. Next, your realtor will arrange a home inspection to make sure the house is in its best condition. After that, we’ll arrange a property appraisal and title search to find out the home’s value as well as any information about the home in public records. During this step, you can sit back and relax (for a moment at least).
- Close on the home
If your offer is approved, it’ll finally be time to close on your new home. Though before you close, you’ll need to schedule the closing day with your realtor and carefully review your closing disclosure (no skim-reading here). After that, it’ll be time to close, get your keys and enjoy life as a new homeowner.
To review this process in more detail, be sure to visit Home Buying 101.