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If you’re a first time home buyer, or if it’s just been a while, these are some of the common questions you might want to ask.

Q: I want to get a mortgage. What do I do first?

A: To get started, meet with a Field & Main mortgage lender. We can help get you prequalified. This takes the guesswork out of shopping for a home because you will know your target price range.

Q: What happens after I’m prequalified for a mortgage?

A: After you’re prequalified, you can start shopping for a home. Make a list of all the “must-have,” “nice to have” and “cannot have” features that are important to you, and share this information with your real estate agent.

Q: What happens when I find a home I want to purchase?

A: When it comes time to make an offer on a home, your real estate agent will guide you through this process. It typically starts with submitting a formal offer to the sellers or their agent. This letter would include the amount of your offer and any conditions you’d like to include. Before you make an offer, you will want to make sure the asking price is in line with other homes in the area. You’ll also want to consider the current condition of the home. Is it “move-in ready” or will you have to make substantial improvements? If the home needs major upgrades or has been on the market for a long time, you might consider submitting a lower offer. A good real estate agent will know this process well and can guide you with expertise.

Q: Do I need a fixed-rate or an adjustable-rate mortgage?

A: A fixed-rate loan has one interest rate that stays the same throughout the term of the loan, while an adjustable-rate loan can change over time. Adjustable-rate mortgages (called ARMs) are popular because they offer low rates in the beginning. However, borrowers should consider how a higher monthly payment would impact their budget if the rate rises. When deciding between these loans, it’s important to consider the length of time you plan to stay in the home. A Field & Main mortgage lender can help you decide which is right for you.

Q: What are closing costs?

A: Closing costs are various items that you have to pay for at closing. These can include appraisal fees, title insurance fees, attorney fees, pre-paid interest and documentation fees, among others. The fees can vary depending on the type of mortgage and your location. We will make sure you receive a good faith estimate of closing costs within three days of application.

Q: How long does it take to close?

A: Once the deal is negotiated, homeowners are eager to move in right away. But typically it takes weeks from the time you apply for your loan until the time that you close on your house. Field & Main works with in-house underwriters to move the process along as quickly as possible.

Q: Shouldn’t I work with a large regional mortgage lender?

A: We don’t think so. One of the biggest benefits of working with Field & Main’s mortgage lending team is that you are our friends and neighbors and we make sure you have a great experience every step of the way. Our rates and terms are competitive—but our service is out of this world. With local underwriting and personal attention from our expert mortgage lenders, we can offer so much more than a big bank.

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