Mortgage Law in Pennsylvania
Mortgages are a particular type of secured loan, where the security is the piece of property bought with the loan. In Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, most mortgages are taken out to buy houses. The seller of the house is paid by the bank, and the buyer, in exchange, agrees to pay the bank back in installments, with interest. If they fail to make these payments, the bank can seize the house.
Taking out a mortgage and buying a house is not a decision to make lightly. However, mortgages serve some very useful purposes. Because houses are so expensive, it's impossible for most people to buy them by paying the full price upfront. A mortgage ensures that the seller gets paid immediately, and that the buyer is able to pay the purchase price over a long period of time, in manageable installments.
Of course, purchasing anything on credit, including purchasing a house with a mortgage, will cost the buyer more in the long run than paying the full price up front, because buying on credit requires the payment of interest - this is how lenders make a profit.
However, to many people, this extra cost is worth it. After all, without mortgages, few people would ever be able to buy homes, if paying out of pocket is the only alternative.
Getting a Mortgage in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania
If you want to get a mortgage in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, it's essential that you have a well-established history of good credit. Credit ratings are used by lenders to estimate how risky a prospect a borrower is. If you have good credit, you'll have a much better shot at getting a mortgage with a reasonably low interest rate. If you have bad credit, you might be unable to get a loan at all, and if you do, the interest rate will be much higher, to account for the higher risk.
The vast majority of lenders will require a down-payment before issuing a loan. This is some up-front payment that represents a percentage of the purchase price. You should ensure that you have enough money saved up to cover the down payment on a house, if you are considering buying one. This will prevent the down payment from straining your finances too much.
You also need to be realistic about your budget. The fact that you're buying a house that you don't have to immediately pay for can tempt some people into taking on more debt than they can handle. You need to make a full accounting of what the house is likely to cost, including the cost of the mortgage payments, property taxes, repairs and maintenance, and other fees.
Once all of your affairs are in order, the time to sign the mortgage agreement comes. Once the agreement is signed, the loan is final, and there's no going back. Well before this day, you should make absolutely sure that you clearly understand every single provision of your mortgage agreement, and the obligations it imposes on you.
Can a Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania Real Estate Attorney help?
Buying a home is a very, very important decision, and will probably have lifelong consequences. For most home-buyers, these consequences are positive. If you want to fall into that category, as well, you should not hesitate to hire a good Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania lawyer if you have any questions or misgivings.