5 Tips for House Hunting in a Competitive Market

Published On:
May 29, 2018

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Navigating Southwest Michigan’s Booming Housing Market? Arbor Financial Can Help!
Just like our warming temperatures, the housing market in Southwest Michigan is heating up. Inventory is tight and competition is fierce. Local real estate experts are calling it a “log jam” and the “perfect storm of real estate”.

Don’t despair though, you can still find your dream house, but you need to be ready. Before you head to a single open house, we recommend you get your financial house in order. At Arbor Financial Credit Union, we have both the products and the expertise to help you buy your next home. Before you begin house-hunting, here are 5 steps to get prepared: 

1) Get a “Credit Checkup”

The more you know about your financials, the better position you’ll be in to buy a new home. Our members are eligible for an annual credit analysis with our experienced financial experts. We can review your credit report, and suggest options to help lower monthly payments and save you money.

Want more information on how to improve your credit score? Our new “Credit Score Guide” e-book explains why your credit score is important, how to maintain strong credit, and ways to improve your score. 


2) Mortgages 101

At Arbor Financial Credit Union, our advisors will help you select the mortgage that fits your needs. It helps to understand your options, so here is a quick primer on Arbor Financial’s available home loans:

  •  Fixed-rate: Loan with flexible terms and stable monthly payments
  •  3% Down: With a smaller upfront payment, this is a good option for first-time buyers with limited funds for a down payment
  •  Bi-weekly mortgage: Twice-monthly payments help reduce interest charges
  •  10-year mortgage: A low, fixed interest rate with shorter payoff can reduce term or consolidate debt
  •  Physician mortgage: Doctors, dentists and veterinarians may qualify for special terms
  •  Jumbo loan: A larger loan beyond usual limits
  •  Construction loans: Low rates and flexible terms designed for new home construction

Need to see the numbers? Try out our mortgage calculator. Input your proposed mortgage amount, interest rates and term to see potential monthly or annual payments.


3) You’re (Pre)- Approved!

The best houses move fast. Some sell the day they hit the market! To be in position to move quickly, we recommend securing your mortgage approval in advance. This “pre-approval” process can help expedite the home buying experience. Arbor Financial’s pre-approval process starts with an easy online application and we will get back to quickly with a response.


4) Constant Contact

Knowledge is power and our team is here to support you. While you’re looking at homes and then when you’re ready to make an offer, check in with us. Let us know if your needs have changed and how we can help. Bid accepted? Congratulations! We will assist you in finalizing the loan process and get financing in place in time for closing. 


5) Welcome Home!

When our members successfully buy a new home, we couldn’t be happier. We appreciate it when you share you stories and your fellow members want to hear from you as well. Here are some of our happy home owners and their journeys.


Ready to learn more? We’re here to answer all your questions. Contact our representatives today!

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