Greg Whiteside



purchasing a home

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How much money will I have to put down?

There are many loan programs available which offer a variety of down payment options.  Which is right for you?  On a conventional loan, down payment options include 3%, 5%, 10% and 20%.  The greater your down payment, the more favorable the interest rate and cost of mortgage insurance.  Mortgage insurance is not required if you put more than 20% down.  On a FHA loan, the required down payment is 3.5%.  VA and USDA loans are the only types of loans that do not require a down payment.  If you or your spouse have served in the military, you may be eligible for a VA loan.  USDA loans are available when purchasing in a 'rural' area as defined by the USDA.  Please note USDA loans have income limits which restrict who may access them.

What is mortgage insurance?  Is it the same as mortgage protection insurance?

​Mortgage insurance is required when your down payment is less than 20%.  Lenders view a lower down payment as a riskier investment and mortgage insurance protects the lender in the event of default.  This should not be confused with mortgage protection insurance, which protects the borrower by paying off the mortgage balance in the event of the homeowner's death.

Why should I use a Realtor?

The real estate market is highly localized, working with a professional who has an intimate knowledge of the local area can be very advantageous.  A Realtor can find the most desirable properties, negotiate a price, review and help you understand your contract plus protect your rights and interests from start to closing.  Best of all, a Realtor is free to the buyer.  It is a win-win relationship I would strongly recommend.