With the housing market heating up as mortgage rates remain low, people are flocking to buy a house, including many first-time buyers. The share of first-time homebuyers in the market reached 36 percent, according to the National Association of Realtors.
This combined with low housing inventory across the U.S has created a competitive environment, so prospective buyers need all the support they can get.
Since interest rates are still hovering at an all-time low right now and so many millennials are buying homes, it is wise to leverage as much technology as possible to make the home buying process easier.
That is why Mint is excited to help make the process easier and take away the stress of qualifying for an accurate rate and loan amount. Through the new digital mortgage solution, Mint works with Rocket Mortgage, a Quicken Loan Company, to offer a seamless online process to automatically pre-fill your information and help lock in a rate in 8 minutes compared to the average pre-approval process, which can often take 1-3 days!
How To Get Started
This new feature is such a great way to help new home buyers with the mortgage loan process as it makes it super easy and quick to see what you qualify for. As a Mint user, you can enter information about your desired home, confirm prefilled personal information and assets and do a credit check. You can then view pre-approved rates and lock in a rate all within the app. If you already have a mortgage with a high-interest rate, you can use Mint’s refinance tool to save money and get a mortgage loan with more favorable terms.
Another key benefit of using the Mint mortgage feature is the amount of time you save. Using your Mint profile, you can complete your application with Quicken Loans and lock in your new rate in 8 minutes! It is so quick and easy that you can do it on the go with your phone. You can avoid the hassle of gathering all your financial information since there are no documents required to lock in your rate with this feature.
Planning for buying a house
As you go through this process, it is still important to know what all the mortgage loan terms are and how much you can truly afford given your monthly budget so you don’t overstretch yourself with a mortgage payment every month. For example, even if you prequalify for a certain size loan amount, you still want to confirm the mortgage payment (and everything else such as HOA, property taxes, home insurance, etc.) is affordable within your budget and cash flow. It’s wise to have a solid budget and be aware of what you can afford monthly. This way, you can cross-check that against the mortgage loan you qualify for to ensure you are not house poor (meaning too much of your monthly budget is going toward home costs).
Typically in financial planning, the rule of thumb is no more than 28% of your net income should be used for home costs. That includes everything such as your mortgage payment, property taxes, home insurance, etc. Make sure you are being realistic with what you can afford and consider working with a financial planner to keep you on track.
Whether you’re in the early stages of saving up for a down payment on a home or you’re actively on the hunt for your dream house, Mint’s new mortgage feature is here to help you make better mortgage decisions. Check out the purchase feature, which is now live in the Mint app here.