Home ownership offers a gateway to independence | Business

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All men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among which are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness. This preamble is part of our history but where many don’t know it is that the philosopher John Locke used a similar statement, “Life, liberty and succession” where succession means property. This thought is the basis of our founding fathers.

Ownership of property gives independence. Thomas Jefferson thought it was so important that the pursuit of land ownership is the pursuit of happiness. The idea is that we have to consider the cost of pursuing that, the American dream, owning a property.

Buying a home is usually the biggest expense most families will ever make in their lifetime. Many people think that they will never be able to buy a house because it is too expensive. They just can’t save enough for the down payment. However, many loans offer 100% financing as well as options that help with down payment assistance.

But what is the real cost of buying a house. The down payment is a necessary thing, and if you cannot qualify for one of the 100% financed loans, you will only have to save 3.5% of the sale price. For example, if the house costs $200,000, all you need to save is $7,000.

Beyond the down payment, there are other costs to be aware of. There are closing costs: these generally range from 2 to 5% of the loan amount. These costs are things like appraisal, inspections, attorney fees, underwriting, etc.

These are buyer’s fees and are part of the mortgage process. A good loan officer will show you these and walk you through them.

Escrow is another cost that should be considered when buying a home. Escrow is the money the lender collects to pay for your home insurance and taxes when they come due. Escrow is not always mandatory, but it is convenient and makes it easier for the buyer. These costs are usually a year’s home insurance up front and about three months’ property taxes up front.

Home Repairs and Improvements No matter what type of home you are buying, new construction, repairer or otherwise, there are always repairs and things one may want to do to personalize the property. These are costs that you must take into account throughout your stay in the house. I encourage buyers to save for these expenses.

Ultimately, the dream of home ownership is accessible to everyone. Well, anyone who is willing to “pursue happiness”.

To do work. Do the research. Get quality people around you in the process. Knowledge is key and the more knowledge you have at your disposal, the better prepared you will be and the smoother the transaction will go.

Charles Hinckley, a local realtor, is the past president of the Kentucky Realtors organization and was named the 2019 Realtor of the Year by the Heart of Kentucky Association of Realtors.

Charles Hinckley, a local realtor, is the past president of the Kentucky Realtors organization and was named the 2019 Realtor of the Year by the Heart of Kentucky Association of Realtors.

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