Money Monday: Your 10-Step Plan for Buying a Home

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  • Step One
  • Set Yourself Up for Success
  • Figure Out What You Can Afford
  • Make Wise Financial Choices
  • Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage
  • Explore Homebuyer Programs
  • Find a Reputable Realtor
  • Review the Selection
  • Order a Home Inspection
  • See Things Through to the End
  • Take Your Seat at the Closing Table

Figure Out What You Can Afford

Houses literally range from the low-$10,000s to multimillions, depending on style, size and location. By whittling down your target range (shoot for a maximum of 30 percent of your monthly gross income for loan principal, interest, homeowners insurance and taxes) you’ll be able to minimize the time and stress involved with “looking at everything under the sun.” Use Wells Fargo’s “How Much Can I Borrow?” calculator to estimate what size loan you’ll qualify for based on your income and assets.

(Photo: Courtesy Wells Fargo)