Getting Pre Approved for a Mortgage in Georgia

If you’re considering buying a home, recent headlines might make you hesitate. The housing market has seen its fair share of challenges lately, from skyrocketing mortgage rates in Georgia to limited inventory. When it comes to the right time for the right interest rate, the decision comes down to this: wait or buy now. Are you a first-time homebuyer just starting to peek at the real estate listings? Are you getting pre approved for a mortgage in Georgia? No matter where you are in your home-buying process, it’s all about timing. 

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The State of Mortgage Rates in Georgia

Interest rates have seen significant fluctuations over the past three years, so it’s been hard for home buyers to know when to make a move. The Federal Reserve adjusted interest rates seven times in 2022 alone, causing the rates to fluctuate from 0.25 to 4.5%. In 2023, the Federal Reserve kept the fed funds rate steady (but at its highest) for a while at 5.25%-5.5%, while private rates reached their highest levels in more than two decades, peaking at 7.79%. While the Fed has signaled potential rate cuts for 2024, reflecting improvements in inflation outlooks, there’s no guarantee.

That leaves you with two options if you’re considering buying a home:

  1. Wait until rates go down to start looking.
  2. Buy a home now instead of waiting.

Before you go through the process of getting pre approved for a mortgage in Georgia, let’s unpack each option.

Should I Wait Until Mortgage Rates Go Down?

Lower borrowing rates are coming. The chair of the Federal Reserve has said so on the record. But exactly when those rates will appear is still very much a mystery. If you plan on playing the waiting game, there could be significant benefits:

  • Potential for Lower Costs: If interest rates decrease, the cost of borrowing for a mortgage will be lower, potentially saving you a significant amount over the life of your loan.
  • Increased Affordability: Lower interest rates can increase your purchasing power, allowing you to afford a more expensive home for the same monthly payment.
  • Market Predictability: The Federal Reserve indicated that it might lower the federal funds rate in 2024, which could lead to lower mortgage rates. However, the exact trajectory of mortgage rates is still being determined and may not drop drastically.

It’s not all positive, though. As you think through whether or not to stick it out until those rates drop or you go through the process of getting pre approved for a mortgage in Georgia, consider the following:

  • Rising Home Prices: There’s a risk that home prices may increase, offsetting any savings from lower interest rates. This is especially a concern if demand picks up as rates drop, pushing prices higher due to increased competition​​.
  • Market Uncertainty: The Federal Reserve’s actions are difficult to predict with certainty. Waiting for lower rates might not pan out if the economy or other factors influence the Fed to maintain higher rates​​.
  • Opportunity Cost: Waiting to buy could mean missing out on finding the right home, especially in markets with low inventory. Current high rates might offer some benefits, such as less competition and more negotiating power.

Today's Mortgage Rates

30 Yr. Fixed 7.000% APR 7.515%
15 Yr. Fixed 6.375% APR 6.873%
30 Yr. Fixed FHA 6.375% APR 7.367%
30 Yr. Fixed VA 6.500% APR 6.932%
Mortgage Rates as of April, 14 2024 See All Rates | See Rate Assumptions

Should I Buy a Home Now Instead of Waiting?

Your other option is to purchase a home now—current interest rates be darned! Weighing the pluses and minuses with this course of action is just as important. Buying now could offer the following benefits:

  • Equity Building: Buying a home sooner allows you to build equity earlier. Even in a high-interest environment, owning a home can be a valuable investment over time​​.
  • Potential for Negotiation: With fewer buyers in the market due to higher rates, you might have more negotiating power on the purchase price, potentially offsetting some of the higher interest costs​​​​.
  • Locking in Rates: If rates are expected to rise further, buying now can help you avoid even higher rates in the future. Additionally, if rates fall, there’s always the option to refinance​​​​.
  • Housing Market Dynamics: Depending on the local market, waiting could mean facing higher home prices, negating the savings from lower future interest rates​

However, there’s always the flip side. If you choose to buy now instead of waiting it out, there are a few things to consider before getting pre approved for a mortgage in Georgia:

  • Higher Monthly Payments: With current rates being higher, your monthly mortgage payments will be larger, affecting your budget and potentially limiting your purchasing power​​​​.
  • Interest Over Time: Over the life of the loan, you’ll end up paying more in interest compared to securing a mortgage at a lower rate, assuming rates do decrease in the future​​.
  • Market Predictability: While the Federal Reserve has hinted at potential rate cuts in 2024, the exact trajectory of interest rates is uncertain, and waiting could potentially offer lower rates​​.
  • Home Price Uncertainty: Although higher rates can cool down the market, leading to price stabilization or decreases, this is not guaranteed, and market conditions vary widely by location​

Ultimately, buying now or waiting should be based on your financial readiness, market conditions, and personal circumstances. Consider utilizing a mortgage calculator to find confidence in the numbers, or contact the Moreira team for a consultation. With decades of experience, we’ve helped thousands of buyers with getting pre approved for a mortgage in Georgia and can help review your finances and goals so you feel confident in whatever decision you choose to make.

Getting Pre Approved for a Mortgage Rate in Georgia Isn’t the Only Thing To Do Now

Don’t wait until you’ve found your dream home and everything is on the line. Inventory is low, and bidding wars are a thing. It’s best to have all your ducks in a row ahead of when your heart is set on a particular address. Here are a few other helpful steps to take:

Get to know, well, yourself. There may be things on your credit you aren’t expecting. Perhaps your W2s are stuffed in a storage unit somewhere. You need to be aware of everything required during the home-buying process to avoid surprises.

Get an upfront approval guarantee. Moreira offers clients an approval guarantee, which means you’re getting fully approved for mortgage rates in Georgia, not just getting pre approved for a mortgage rate in Georgia. This means you can waive the financial contingencies, making your offer more appealing to a seller. Since the housing market is quite competitive, any edge you can gain is a good one.

Get a realtor. Look for one with experience, especially in your target neighborhood. Check the online presence and reviews of potential agents on platforms like Zillow. Their profiles can offer insights into their experience, specialties, and past sales. Then hop on the phone to interview a few of them to see who you vibe with best. You will spend a lot of time together, so choose wisely.

Start house hunting. Because inventory is limited, it’s never too early to start looking—research top neighborhoods. Identify what you want and need in a home, including your non-negotiables and budget. Browse house-hunting apps and websites to get a sense of what’s out there. 

Connect with the Moreira team as you weigh your options between buying now or waiting until rates drop. Getting pre approved for a mortgage rate in Georgia is easy, and with our approval guarantee, you’ll have the highest likelihood of securing your home purchase. Request a quote today.