When we think of teachers, we think of the people most likely to have a deep and lasting impact on our children. Each of us can easily remember our favorite teachers. The heroes who inspired us, challenged us, encouraged us, and helped us become who we are meant to be.
Rent or Buy?
Teaching isn’t a profession someone gets into for the money, and it isn’t a profession where money is given the way it’s deserved. Because of that, purchasing a home can feel overwhelming. While it’s known that owning a home can actually help build lasting wealth, fluctuating interest rates and a competitive market combined with a teacher's salary don't make it simple to start the process.
With Heroes First Home Loans, teachers get access to specialized home loans that minimize costs when buying or refinancing a home. With no lender fees, this money can be allocated to other areas within the home buying or refinancing process. This is the best way we know to show teacher appreciation: by educating teachers on how to achieve the dream of owning a home on a teacher’s salary and giving the peace of mind that comes with saving money.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
- Work with a loan officer as soon as you decide to purchase or refinance a home. A trusted loan officer will be your best friend throughout the mortgage process and will be someone to rely on for direction and solid advice.
- After connecting with one of the loan officers at Heroes First Home Loans, thoroughly go over all your finances (both individually and with a loan officer). Doing so gives the opportunity to see what you can actually afford, and then where the comfort level of spending is.
- Become a Heroes First Certified Home Buyer. This is the premier pre-approval in the mortgage industry, giving you the advantages usually only seen by a cash buyer.
- Use Rate Secured. This allows you to cap your interest rate for 90 days while you search for a home. If rates go up, yours won't. If rates go down, we'll give you the lower rate!
- Check out Home Buyer Edge. Both programs listed above are part of Home Buyer Edge. A $5,000 Seller Guarantee is also included. This means that if your purchase falls through due to financing, we'll give the seller $5,000 in addition to earnest money. This makes your offer stand out from the crows!
Did you know it takes 27 years on average for a teacher to make $75,000? Knowing that many teachers are severely underpaid, and that a lot of classrooms are decorated and stocked through a teacher’s personal finances, it’s imperative that budgeting come into play when looking to buy a home. Our job is to make sure that buying a home lessens your financial burden, rather than adding to it.
Transparency matters at Heroes First . That means we will always be honest, even if our lending options aren’t the best choice for your situation. Using our expertise to educate allows teachers to have another tool in the “teacher toolbox” while going through the mortgage process.
Tip and tricks to think about:
- Establish non-negotiables: Are there any must haves for the new home? Does it need to be close to work? Is it worth paying more for a better yard, but having a smaller home? Once the “make or breaks” are established, then expectations can be adjusted, and wiggle room can be made within the budget.
- Look at expenses: Owning a home is a huge and worthwhile investment, but there are aspects many forget to think about. Oftentimes you’ll have a Homeowner’s Association (an organization within a subdivision that makes and enforces rules for the properties and residents living there) who you have to pay fees to. You’ll also have property taxes and home maintenance for upkeep of your home. All of this needs to be taken into consideration when establishing a budget.
- Choose a trusted real estate agent: Finding the right Realtor® is crucial. If you’re unsure, we can help! We have real estate agents we trust to get the job done with diligence, respect, and appreciation for clients. Our referred agents also understand our stance on teacher appreciation.
- Ask questions. Then ask more: There are no silly questions when it comes to the home buying or refinancing process. Our goal is to guide and educate, which means we are here to answer all the questions … all the time. The decision to take on a mortgage can be both exciting and somewhat stressful, and we want to be a source of peace and confidence in that decision. So, we’ll say it again: Ask questions!
These are some basic tips, but we know there's much more to discuss when it comes to buying a home on a teacher's salary. The best way to begin is to connect with one of the loan officers at Heroes First Home Loans and learn how we celebrate, appreciate, and finance teachers for a home fit for a hero.