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If you're looking to purchase a home in Texas, it pays to keep your housing costs affordable, and you can do so by shopping around for the best mortgage rate. If you apply for a home loan with multiple mortgage lenders, you'll be more likely to snag a rate you're happy with. Lenders have varying requirements when it comes to credit score or debt-to-income ratio.
There's plenty of housing in the Lone Star State that won't break the bank. Here are some areas to consider.
About two hours northwest of Dallas, Wichita Falls sports an impressive network of parks, and it appeals to families and young professionals. The median home value in Wichita Falls is $102,400, according to Niche, well below the median home value for Texas -- $289,252, according to Zillow. The average property tax rate in Wichita County, as reported by Tax-rates.org, is 1.69% of a home's assessed value. That's just below the average property tax rate for all of Texas -- 1.81%.
On the Mexico border, Brownsville has a fairly healthy economy, with plenty of government jobs and opportunities in education and aerospace. Just be aware that summers in Brownsville can be extremely hot and humid. The median home value in Brownsville is $90,000, while the average property tax rate in Cameron County is 1.76% of a home's assessed value.
About 90 minutes east of Houston, Beaumont is known for its arts scene, museums, and historic buildings. The median home value in Beaumont is $113,600, while the average property tax rate in Jefferson County is 1.59% of a home's assessed value.
In the northwestern corner of Texas, about an hour from the New Mexico border, Amarillo is known as a meat-packing hub, supplying about one-quarter of the country's beef. The city also offers access to Palo Duro Canyon State Park, the second-largest canyon system in the U.S. after Arizona's Grand Canyon. The median home value in Amarillo is $132,500, while the average property tax rate in Potter County is 1.76% of a home's value.
At the southern tip of Texas near the Mexico border, McAllen has seen its share of economic challenges in recent years. Despite that, its network of parks and recreation make it a draw for young families. The median home value in McAllen is $126,000, and the average property tax rate in Hidalgo County is 1.92% of a home's assessed value.
Before you apply for a mortgage in Texas, you may want to boost your credit score and lower your debt-to-income ratio. Doing so will make you a more appealing loan candidate, which means you could end up with a competitive rate. Paying down existing debt helps from both credit score and debt-to-income ratio perspectives -- it also gives you less to worry about once you sign for a mortgage and have a new monthly bill.
If you want to uncover more about the best mortgage lenders for low rates and fees, our experts have created a shortlist of the top mortgage companies. Some of our experts have even used these lenders themselves to cut their costs.
Our Mortgages Experts
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