Why Pre-Approval Should Be Your First Step

In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes greatly outnumbers the amount of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search.

Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, knowing your budget will give you the confidence of knowing if your dream home is within your reach. 

Freddie Mac lays out the advantages of pre-approval in the My Home section of their website:

“It’s highly recommended that you work with your lender to get pre-approved before you begin house hunting. Pre-approval will tell you how much home you can afford and can help you move faster, and with greater confidence, in competitive markets.”

One of the many advantages of working with a local real estate professional is that many have relationships with lenders who will be able to help you with this process. Once you have selected a lender, you will need to fill out their loan application and provide them with important information regarding “your credit, debt, work history, down payment and residential history.” 

Freddie Mac describes the 4 Cs that help determine the amount you will be qualified to borrow:

  1. Capacity: Your current and future ability to make your payments
  2. Capital or cash reserves: The money, savings and investments you have that can be sold quickly for cash
  3. Collateral: The home, or type of home, that you would like to purchase
  4. Credit: Your history of paying bills and other debts on time

Getting pre-approved is one of many steps that will show home sellers that you are serious about buying, and it often helps speed up the process once your offer has been accepted.

Bottom Line

Many potential home buyers overestimate the down payment and credit scores needed to qualify for a mortgage today. If you are ready and willing to buy, you may be pleasantly surprised at your ability to do so as well.

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JUST LISTED!!! GORGEOUS home in Celebrate Virginia!

Welcome to 92 Scott’s Ford Ln, Fredericksburg VA 22406


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Well priced, GORGEOUS home in Celebrate Virginia! Come see this one! Energy Star Version 2 Qualified Home, closest one to the Cannon Ridge golf course! Gourmet kitchen, hardwoods, master suite with sitting room and dual walk-in closets, gym in basement conveys with full price offer. 80k in upgrades when built! So many amenities! Great location, yet private cul-de-sac! Honey start the car!!


  • Very near the Cannon Ridge Golf Course!
  • Very near the new Rocky Pen Run Reservoir – bring your canoes and kayaks!
  • Near 24 hour fitness facility and new Starbucks!
  • Master suite includes a sitting room, double sided fireplace, and dual walk in closets!
  • Master bath has large jetted tub, glass enclosed shower, enclosed water closet, separate linen closets and sinks!
  • Guest bedroom with private full bath and two more guest bedrooms with dual sink Jack & Jill bathroom!
  • Fully Finished basement with 5th bedroom, full bath, and bonus room!
  • The following conveys with a full price offer: Entire home gym, extra full size side by side refrigerator/freezer, extra stand-up frost-free freezer, 16 cubic ft floor standing safe!
  • Family room wired for surround sound!
  • Double wall electric ovens and efficient propane gas stove top!
  • Large gourmet island kitchen with granite counters and hardwood floors!
  • Gleaming stainless steel appliances!
  • Dual staircases and Cherry hardwood floors!
  • Custom window treatment blinds and curtains!
  • Whole house fire suppression sprinkler system!
  • Energy Star Version 2 Qualified Home!
  • Front lawn in ground sprinkler system!
  • Fully fenced back yard, elevated deck with stairs to tiered patio with fire pit!
  • Alternative routes for your DC or Richmond commute!
  • HOA includes snow removal and landscaping of the common areas and the streets!

Contact: Michelle Smith, eXp Realty, 540-710-4205 for a private showing!

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Top 3 Things Second-Wave Baby Boomers Look for in a Home

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According to data from the U.S Census bureau, there are approximately 76.4 million baby boomers living in the United States today. Contrary to what many think, there are very different segments within this generation, and one piece that sets them apart are their housing needs.

John McManus, editorial director of Hanley Wood’s Residential Group says his company “is focusing on the preferences of the younger half, or second-wave baby boomers, as they exhibit different needs than the older boomers.”

What are ‘second-wave baby boomers’ looking for?

McManus says, “They are seeking a fun, dynamic lifestyle with a home that can also adjust to their changing needs in the future. Living space should either include accessibility features, such as doorway space, lower shelves, and nonslip surfaces, or be easily adjustable when the time comes.

In a homebuyer study performed by The Farnsworth Group, the participants revealed their reasons for purchasing a new home. The top three factors that influence their purchase include area/location (50.2%), price/affordability (37.4%), and the layout of the home (19%) (as shown in the graph below).

Top 3 Things Second-Wave Baby Boomers Look for in a Home | Simplifying The Market

The report also found that when buying a new home, there were other concerns like quality of construction (9%), a safer neighborhood (8.4%), better floor plans (8.25%). The most important rooms or areas are the kitchen (82.8%), master bedroom (59.2%), and great room (36%).

Technology also plays an important role! Second-wave baby boomers prefer wireless security systems (7.1%), lighting that senses and adapts to them (6.3%) and integrated home technology, including “smart” thermostats and lighting controlled by a smartphone (6.2%).

Grey Matter Research and Consulting points to a sense of community as a major factor in wanting to purchase:

The first impressions are important when entering a new community, as is feeling welcome in the community. Amenities such as clubhouses, pools, and walking trails featured prominently in the decision to purchase in a community. Location was key, as residents want their new homes to be near shopping, dining, medical services and entertainment.

Bottom Line

If you are one of the many ‘second-wave’ baby boomers who is starting to feel like their current homes no longer fit their needs, take advantage of the low inventory of existing homes in today’s market by selling your current home and moving on to one that truly fits your new lifestyle.


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