Buying a home is usually a tag-team effort by a wife/mother and a husband/father. The reason why this is so is that a single parent typically doesn’t have the advantage of a dual income, thereby making it harder for them to qualify for a mortgage. But this doesn’t necessarily mean that single parents are out of the game.

HomeStart Finance reports that approximately 20% of their consumers are single parents with dependents. That figure is reason enough to motivate single parents to look for a house on their own.

As a matter of fact, there are several advantages to owning a house as a single parent. For one thing, owning a house gives single parents self-accomplishment, a sense of security, stability, and pride. It even provides plenty of financial benefits like the house increasing in value, possible tax deductions, and predictable costs. But the biggest benefit that single parents or single moms can look towards is raising their children.

While that is great and all, but if you’re sitting there asking yourself “what is the best way to buy a home as a single mom?”, then this article is your saving‌ ‌grace.

Here are the following tips to help out single mom first time home buyers:

1.   Think about Whether  Single Parent Home Ownership makes Sense

If you’re a single parent who is renting at the moment, then you need to determine whether buying a house is the right move for you or not. After all, homeownership isn’t for everyone.

One of the biggest aspects that you need to consider when figuring out if you want to own a home or not is determining whether you can handle the responsibility. Such responsibilities include home repairs and maintenance. This is different from renting a home or an apartment since the landlords are usually the ones responsible for maintenance.

For instance, if you purchase a home and live somewhere where you’ll experience extreme snowy winters, then you’ll be the one responsible for shoveling the snow instead of anyone else. You’ll also be responsible for landscaping as well as cleaning the gutters.

2.   Learn How to Budget

Learning how to budget thoroughly is the only way to figure out whether or not you’re able to afford a house as a single parent and determine to what degree there may be risks/uncertainties when considering a mortgage with either one or more children by your side.

On one hand, you might not be able to afford this right now at this part of your life and may need to look towards other methods that welcome smaller investments or perhaps work on increasing your income with a clear concept of your budget for the following years.

In other words, budgeting gives you a realistic understanding of your affordability. It will show you whether you can afford something or not at a certain time, even if it isn’t going to be right away.

3.   Get Yourself Pre-approved for a Mortgage

If you have finally decided that you want to buy a home as a single parent, then the next thing to do is to seek out pre-approval for a mortgage. However, you’ll need to differentiate between a mortgage pre-qualification and pre-approval.

When you are attempting to purchase a house, it’s wiser to get pre-approved for a mortgage instead of being pre-qualified as it’ll make a world of difference when you’re negotiating with all a seller. In some instances, sellers are not willing to accept buyers who are only pre-qualified unless they have gone through the pre-approval process first.

There are several mortgage products that homebuyers can find. Some of those products include 15-year fixed mortgages, 30-year fixed mortgages, adjustable-rate, and several other types. But before that, it’s important that you get pre-approved first to know which one suits you best. If you’re looking to get mortgage pre-approval in the Greater Toronto Area, check out Trilogy Homes from Ballymore Homes.

4.   Look into Your Income Options

There are a number of income options available for a variety of families, including single mothers. Some of these options include:

1.    Government Payments

Single parents are typically entitled to government payments as long as their income doesn’t go over a particular limit. Some mortgage lenders are willing to accept these payments as evidence of income, but you have to make sure to ask when looking into mortgage lenders. Do some comparisons. Ask these lenders how late tackle single parents compared to couples when considering customer loan policies and relationship management.

2.    First Home Owners Grant

Based on your history on the property market, you could also be eligible for the First Home Owners Grant. These types of initiative grants from the government vary from state to state but are absolutely worth the check. Just think about getting $15,000 from the start going into your mortgage. That would certainly give you some excellent leeway.

3.    FHA

Federal housing association (FHA) loans are another great option for a single mom who wants to buy a house, especially if they have a low to moderate-income and are in search of something that doesn’t require a huge down payment.

These loans are offered to first-time buyers who haven’t owned a house in over 3 years. It doesn’t come with any income-eligibility requirements and has only a 3.5% down payment. What’s more, is that an owner’s credit score doesn’t have to be excellent either. In fact, in most areas, a minimum score of 600 is accepted in most areas, whereas some can even accept as low as 580.

4.    Look for a Great Mortgage Broker

Real estate agents or mortgage brokers, have intimate knowledge of the loan market and are just the kind of people that can help potential first-time single-parent homeowners determine the best lender for them. What’s even more interesting is that you’re basically getting free service from them as most of these lenders get a commission from the lender.

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