Understanding mortgage basics will help you navigate the process and set realistic goals.
Most likely, your home will be the biggest purchase you ever make. It can be a tad bit nerve wracking. However, when you are armed with a bit of knowledge, mortgages don’t seem quite so intimidating. That is why we have compiled these mortgage basics:
What is a Mortgage?
Beyond just being a whole bunch of money, a mortgage is a loan that bridges the gap between your down payment and the purchase price of your home. Bridging this gap is vital for most prospective buyers because it is rare to have enough cash on hand to afford a home outright.
What Does Your Mortgage Payment Cover?
A portion of your monthly mortgage payment will cover the interest on the loan and another portion will cover the principal (the amount you borrowed). Initially, most of your mortgage payment will cover the interest. However, as your principal shrinks, more of your mortgage payment will go towards your principal.
What is the Difference Between a Fixed and Adjustable Rate Mortgage?
The monthly payment for a fixed rate mortgage stays the same throughout the lifespan of your loan. With an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM), your monthly payment fluctuates – typically up – with interest rates.
Which Loan Officer Should You Work With?
The key is to work with a loan officer you trust. Often, one of the best ways to do so is to ask a friend or family member for a recommendation. Additionally, you can get a really good feeling for a potential loan officer by meeting with them.