Buy A Home
The Home Buying Process
Shopping for your first home can be exciting – but finding the right financing can be daunting. With PHH Mortgage, it doesn't have to be. We’ll help you understand and navigate the homebuying process, start to finish.
If you're ready to consider buying a new home, we're ready to help you make decisions, find the financing that fits your unique situation and show you how you might get an edge over other buyers.
This overview takes you through the homebuying and mortgage experience so you know what’s to come. For a more detailed explanation, call an experienced PHH Mortgage loan consultant at (800) 210-8849. We can answer any questions you have, every step of the way.
Determine What You Can Afford
Knowing what you can afford is an important first step on your road to home ownership. Key costs to consider are:
- The down payment: This is the part of the property purchase price paid in cash and not financed with a mortgage. The larger your down payment, the lower your monthly mortgage payments.
- Closing costs: Due at closing, these cover expenses that complete the transfer of ownership – such as an origination fee, attorney's fee, initial escrow payments and the costs of obtaining title insurance and a survey. Closing costs are typically based on the home price and vary according to location.
- Monthly payments: These are based on both the principal (the amount of the loan) and interest (the amount you pay to borrow money, calculated as a percentage of the amount borrowed). They may also include money held in escrow for taxes, homeowners’ insurance and mortgage insurance.
- Additional expenses: Utilities, insurance and homeowners’ association dues, and property management fees are other costs to consider in your budget.
These expenses may vary, depending on the loan options you choose. An affordability calculator may help you determine the amount you can afford – and feel comfortable spending.
Once you have an idea of what you can afford, speak with one of our loan consultants who will help you find a financing option that’s right for you. Call (800) 210-8849.
Get a Pre-Approval Decision
Obtaining a loan is typically a big part of the experience for first-time homebuyers – but the process can require high credit scores and a lot of documentation. It's best to obtain a pre-approval decision before you start house hunting, as it will allow you to search with the confidence of knowing the amount you can borrow.
What to Expect
A pre-approval decision can make your homebuying experience easier. A pre-approval is a preliminary evaluation of your financial status that does not include a commitment to giving you a loan. If you receive a loan pre-approval decision, we'll fax or email a letter with your loan amount so you can start house hunting right away. In fact, many real estate agents will ask you to get a pre-approval letter first so they can show you homes that suit your budget. With the letter to back up your bids, you can stay focused on finding your first home.
We're at your service and available to answer any questions. Contact us at (800) 210-8849 to receive a pre-approval decision in as little as one business day.1 Submitting complete, accurate and legible documentation helps to speed the process – and we can help keep you on track. Once you receive your pre-approval decision, you can check the status of your loan anytime at www.mortgageloanstatus.com.
Explore Your Options
Once you find the home you want, your real estate agent can provide you with a list of comparable homes (known as “comps”) recently sold in the area. Comps help you determine how much to offer; but before you decide on the amount, consider such important factors as how much you can afford, the condition of the home, the competitiveness of the local marketplace, inspections and more.
Any offer you make could become legally binding, so we strongly recommend consulting with your real estate agent before committing.
Finalize the Home Inspection and Loan Commitment
Make sure your offer contains provisions for an inspection by an accredited home inspector and outlines actions to address any issues that may arise. The inspection should cover interior and exterior structural elements, as well as heating/cooling, electrical and plumbing systems. It is strongly recommended that you be present during the inspection so you can use it as a time to ask questions and learn about the property.
The loan commitment takes place once the loan and the property are approved. These steps include appraising the home to make sure it meets certain guidelines and conducting a title search to ensure there are no outstanding liens on the property.
Close on the Property
At the closing, you and the seller transfer funds and sign all applicable paperwork to finalize the transaction. Real estate agents, closing agents, attorneys and mortgage and title representatives may also be present.
Our loan consultant will help you prepare for closing, which includes providing you with an estimate of any fees due at the closing.
Once all parties sign the papers and fees are paid, you'll get the keys to your new home. As part of our competitive service guarantee, we'll close your loan by the agreed upon closing date – or we’ll pay you $500.2
Get Started Now
PHH Mortgage will help you on your way home, every step of the way. For a more in-depth explanation of your options, call (800) 210-8849 or start the application process online.
1 This is not a commitment to lend. All pre-approval requests or applications are subject to complete underwriting review.
2 Approved, conventional, conforming, purchase loans only. Excludes loans for REO, USDA and short sale properties. Void when delayed closing is required by law. Closing date to be mutually agreed upon between customer and us, and customer must provide all required documentation. Void if delays are caused by third-party entities (Appraisal, Title, Verification of Employment, etc.). Request for adjustment under guarantee must be made no later than 48 hours after the loan closing.