Buying a home is an excellent way to create stability for your family and make a home base with a strong support system. It is important to carefully consider your finances when deciding if you’re ready to buy a home as a military family. You should consider your combined household income, your future family needs and your long-term employment prospects.
It is also important to consider the upkeep that goes into a home and the fact that all of the responsibility will be left to your partner or spouse during deployment. Ensure you are making the best possible decision for everyone involved before you go ahead.
1. You’ve Got A Strong Emergency Fund
Ensure you have an emergency fund of at least two weeks of the household pay. Keep this separate from other savings and use it for expenses in your first months living in your new property. If you don’t have emergency funds, avoid buying a home until you’ve saved more.
2. You Have A Large Down Payment Saved
Aim to save at least 20% for a down payment. The larger your down payment, the better the terms on your home loan. As a military family, you may be eligible for a VA loan, which can remove the need for a down payment.
3. Your Credit Score Is Good
Check your credit score regularly to ensure all details are correct and no fraudulent activity has occurred. Work to pay down debts and credit cards to improve your credit score. Avoid using too much of your credit limit.
4. You Can Afford The Monthly Repayments
Use an amortization schedule calculator to work out what your repayments will be. Ensure you can afford these in addition to other household bills. Talk to Hero Loan about your options for VA loans as a military family.
5. Your Debt Is Low
Pay down debt to get the best deal on a home loan. Avoid taking out new credit cards when applying for a mortgage. If you have a lot of debt, avoid buying a home until it is reduced to a manageable level.
6. You Have Good Civilian Job Prospects
Consider the role you will have if or when you leave the military. Consider whether the jobs you will have access to will allow you to continue making repayments. Avoid getting more mortgage than you can afford.
7. You’re Ready To Settle Down
You should be prepared to live in your property for years or decades. Ensure you are ready for the commitment. Talk to your household to make the right choice of locations.
8. You Have Plenty Of Disposable Income
You need more disposable income as a homeowner to pay for maintenance, repairs and renovations. Ensure you have a good debt to income ratio (DTI) when factoring in mortgage and housing costs and your overall debts.
9.You Can Fix Minor Household Issues
Ensure you can fix any minor issues that go wrong. Have reliable tradespeople on speed dial in the event you need a professional.