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New spouse, new house

Posted: Monday, Mar. 30, 2009

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One of the greatest fears newlyweds face is the process of deciding to buy a house and applying for a mortgage. Purchasing your first home together can be intimidating, but keep in mind that owning a residence with your new spouse will be deeply rewarding, especially when you go into the venture as an informed couple who have done their “home” work!

You know you are going to have to get a mortgage, so what can you do to make the process a little more comfortable? The first thing you should do is to find out what you can afford. Call a reputable lender who will tell you what financial material to get together. The lender will request information on your employment, your assets and your debts. After reviewing your financial data, the lender should be able to get you and your spouse pre-approved for a mortgage amount.

At this point you will know how much home you can afford, but it is still crucial that you sit down and talk about what you feel you can handle as far as a monthly payment amount. The last thing newlyweds need is to have a mortgage obligation that creates a stressful environment. So take time to sort out things such as potential for pay increases at work, student loans that may be paid off soon, etc. Are you going to need a new car before long? When might children be in your future? These possibilities need to be taken into consideration.

Newlyweds should also discuss whether they are willing to commit to a larger mortgage payment, possibly at the expense of not having the disposable income to travel or enjoy other activities. Taking time to deal with these important issues now can eliminate a great deal of stress later.

Talk to your lender, as well as your real estate agent, for further advice and guidance. Both are professionals who have helped couples to truly “live” happily ever after. You’ll most likely discover that what you perceived as a frightening proposition is not really all that scary. And your home will be not only an investment in your future together, but one of the first of many dreams that you can make come true for yourselves.

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