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General Information about Buying Properties


A great deal of preparation goes into buying real estate. This is especially daunting for first-time buyers. But if you follow some basic guidelines, do some research, and consult the right experts, you can get the property you desire with the least stress and frustration.

Here’s some general information that will help first-timers, especially those buying land in Alabama, from single-family homes to sprawling ranches or timberland properties.

Get a good credit rating

Before you begin shopping around for land or houses for sale in Alabama, first make sure that your credit rating looks good. A good credit rating translates to better chances of getting a mortgage with the most ideal terms. To impress the lenders, you should have a credit history that shows previous loans being paid off and on time.

Some sites like freecreditscore.com and creditkarma.com can help in giving you yourcredit score for free. Any mortgage lender will smile at a good credit rating. But if your credit rating is poor, then you can check where you had lapses and correct these before batting for another credit assessment.

Work out your finances

When you get a mortgage, you are usually expected to pay a deposit. This is usually around 20% of the value of the property’s price tag. Lenders can provide you with other loans that cost less upfront but these come with a fairly high-interest rate. Also keep in mind that you will need to spend on other things like furniture, transport, equipment, and renovations. Those are on top of the closing cost that could reach as high as 5% of the final price.


Ask yourself how much property you can afford. See if the cost of living in Alabama is within your means if you plan to settle here. If you’ll be dedicating around 28% or more of your income toward paying for mortgage, try to strike that balance between that and building a life here. There’ll be other payables that come with property ownership like utilities, repair fees, and maintenance fees. Then you may also have other fees to pay or personal insurance. With all these factored in, you’ll see exactly what kind of property will be within your financial capacity.

Go mortgage shopping

Different lenders will offer mortgages at different rates. So if living in Alabama and getting a property here is among your major plans, visit not just one but several mortgage lenders and shop for the best rates here. If you have an independent real estate expert helping you out, then they won’t be limited to only one lender but several. They can then help you to choose the lender who is right for you.

After selecting your mortgage lender, get pre-approved. This will help sellers and agents know that you are a serious buyer with enough money to pay.

Look for properties

By the time you get to this part of the process, you should already know the range of property value that you can afford. Begin your property hunting, preferably with the guidance of a reputable real estate agent who knows the area by heart.If the property you’re eyeing is in one of the best places to live in Alabama, then go for it and make your own bid.

If you’re looking for a reputable realtor dealing in investment-quality rural and recreational properties, then come to us at Bill Mackey Real Estate. Our team of ranch brokers knows Alabama’s Black Belt by heart. You can get in touch with us at 334.289.8470 or via email at bill@billmackey.com.