Mortgage Law in Pennsylvania
Mortgages are a specific type of secured loan, where the security is the piece of property bought with the loan. In Reading, 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 refuse 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. Nonetheless, mortgages serve some very useful purposes. Because houses are so expensive, it's impossible for most people to buy them by paying the whole 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, buying anything on credit, including purchasing a house with a mortgage, will cost the buyer more in the long run than paying the whole price up front, because buying on credit requires the payment of interest - this is how lenders make a profit.
Nonetheless, 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 Reading, Pennsylvania
The most essential factor in getting a mortgage on favorable terms in Reading, Pennsylvania is having a good credit rating. Credit ratings exist to make it easy for prospective lenders to assess a person's risk as a borrower. A good credit rating shows that you paid most or all of your debts on time, and are likely to continue to do so. A poor credit rating says the opposite, and will make it much more difficult to get a loan, and even if you do, the interest rate is likely to be much higher.
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 confirm that you have enough money saved up to cover the down payment on a house, if you are considering buying one. This will keep the down payment from straining your finances too much.
It's also critical to be realistic about your financial situation when calculating monthly payments. Obviously, a more expensive house will result in higher mortgage payments. While buying a house on credit may tempt you to get something more expensive than you can really afford, you should resist this temptation. Having a big, expensive home won't count for much if you can't make the payments, and it gets foreclosed. You should make a reasonable accounting of the expenses associated with home ownership. This includes mortgage payments, property taxes, and others.
Once you're ready to close the deal, you will have to sign all of the mortgage and sale agreements. This essentially makes everything final, so it's imperative that you have a good understanding of every provision of the agreement long before you get to this point. This is definitely an area where surprises are not desirable.
Can a Reading, Pennsylvania Real Estate Attorney help?
Because of the gravity of the decision to buy a house, and the complexity of some of the issues incorporated, it is never a bad idea to seek the help of a Reading, Pennsylvania real estate attorney if you have any questions whatsoever.