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Why Texas?

Texas has not been able to completely stay out of the economic stress, but it is doing quite well compared to the rest of the nation.  The housing market in Texas has fared better than most of the nation.  Its mortgage delinquency rate is at 5.78% compared to the 8.78% of the rest of the nation.  This is because they have relaxed zoning codes and a lot of land which keeps price appreciation and speculation down.  Also, Texas law does not allow consumers to use home equity to increase borrowing to more than 80%.  Texas also uses energy as its driving mechanism.  By having their own power grid and deregulation they are able to build more transmission lines because they do not have to follow federal jurisdiction or ask other states.   This also allows them the opportunity to work with other sources of energy, such as wind energy, with which they have succeeded because of the grids being connected from west Texas to Dallas to Houston.

Before Buying Your First Texas Home

Before considering buying your first home; ask yourself if you can afford it, are you planning on living there a long time, do I have time and money to maintain the home and why do you want a home.  If you have answered in the positive to these questions your next step is to find an agent with the knowledge and experience of buying a home in Texas.  Once you have found someone, they should guide you in searching for homes that meet your specific needs as a family. Then you need to find a mortgage/lender to pre-approve you for a loan.

Advantages for Being a First Time buyer in Texas

In May of 2010 the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs designed a program to help low to moderate income homebuyers.  They have an assisted loan known as a 1st lien mortgage that has an interest rate a little higher than the current market interest rate.  This can also provide you the down payment and closing cost of the mortgage which is typically 4%, which is available through a 2nd lien mortgage of 30 years at 0% interest.  If you decide to sell, repay the 1st lien or refinance your home, you will be required to pay that 4% in full.  The assisted loan is given to families who earn up to 115% of the area’s median family income up to 140% depending on family size.  You may get an unassisted loan at a lower interest rate than the current market interest, but it does not come with assistance.

All of the 1st lien mortgages are available for a 30-year fixed rate, and the rates will vary under the program depending on the rates at the time of purchase.  You must participate in Homebuyer Education when you have a loan through TDHCA.  This course can be found online through their website.

Victoria Kunze enjoys writing on the topic of real estate and about companies like Dunhill Homes.