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Fifth Third Bank

First Time Home Buyer Guide

Buying your first home—it’s very exciting and a little scary. But that’s ok. Our Mortgage Loan Specialists can help you find the mortgage that fits your finances.

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Step 1: Prepare

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Each first-time homebuyer wants something different. Some care about the quality of schools, others value nearby shopping and restaurants. The list is endless. Of course, home ownership also has benefits everyone agrees on. For instance, it can offer significant tax benefits* and the possibility of building equity.

Check Your Financial Fitness

What home can I afford?

Before you shop for your new home, it’s important to find out how much you can afford. After all, there’s no sense finding your dream home only to discover it’s out of your price range. Use this mortgage calculator to estimate how much home you can buy.

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Lenders use your credit score to determine their level of risk in lending to you. 300 is the lowest possible score, while 850 is the highest. You can get one copy of your credit report each year at
Saving for your down payment can seem like a huge task. But think of it this way—millions of homes are bought in the US every year. And if they can do it, you can do it too. A good way to start is to open a savings account and make a budget you can stick to.
Once you know how much home you can afford, you'll need to show proof in the form of a pre-qualification letter from the lender. This can give you the purchasing leverage you need to help find the home that fits your budget. The process is quick and easy. Once prequalified, you’ll receive a letter that verifies your “ready-to-buy” status, putting you in a position of power to negotiate the purchase of your home.

Step 2: Shop for a Home

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Now that you’re ready to buy, it’s time to find your dream home. This is the fun part! The one challenge is to keep track of all the features of all the homes you see in your search. Our advice is simple: Take notes and take pictures.
When shopping for a home, it’s important to know the team you’re working with. At Fifth Third, our Mortgage Loan Specialist will partner with you, answer all of your questions, and guide you through every step of the process. Our only goal is getting you the keys to the home of your dreams.
Finding a great home is exciting. But there are other things to think about. Do you need good schools? How about convenient shopping or nearby parks? They say location is everything—and they’re right. So be sure to consider your lifestyle and the home’s surroundings before you buy.

Step 3: Make an Offer

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Now that you have found the home you want, it’s time to make an offer. Your real estate professional can assist you with a letter of intent for the seller. The seller then has a specific time frame to consider the offer and accept it or submit a counter offer to you. Once you and the seller reach an agreement and the letter of intent is signed, you are ready to finalize your financing.

Step 4: Apply for a Mortgage

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If you’re buying your first home, remember that the mortgage you choose is just as important as the home you choose. So it’s important that you work with the right mortgage lender. We believe that’s us.

Consider Fifth Third your mortgage resource. We have a wide selection of financing options. But more important, we have mortgage loan specialist experienced in helping first-time homebuyers and are happy to assist you every step of the way.

Step 5: Closing Time

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The hard part is over, and it’s almost time to open the door to your new home. There are still some important details left to do.

In the closing, the loan documents are signed, the balance of the loan costs are calculated, funds are disbursed and the transaction is complete. Then you will receive the keys to your new home.

Download After Closing PDF

Fifth Third Bank is Here to Help

To apply for a home loan or
refinance, call 1-866-351-5353.

For questions about your existing
loan, call 1-800-972-3030.

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