Whether you’re a first-time buyer or an experienced buyer, there is a lot to consider when beginning the home buying process. Already a pro at the process?
For those new to the process or those in need of a refresher course, here’s some helpful info –
Step 1: Consulting Your REALTOR® – Establish expectations, learn about buyers agency, assess home needs and wants.
One of the most important services we can perform for you is to represent you in the purchase of your home. As your buyers agent, we will be able to offer advice and counsel, show homes listed in the MLS, new construction and many ‘For Sale By Owner’ homes, show you market trends and comparable sales, and most importantly, NEGOTIATE ON YOUR BEHALF.
Finding the right home can be a time-consuming process. Answering a few questions ahead of time can help narrow your choice of properties. The first consideration is location, location, location. Where do you want to live? What neighborhoods appeal to you? Do you want a new home community or a settled community? What about a yard? Walking or recreational opportunities? Proximity to shops and work? And the big one: schools?
Step 2: Getting Pre-Approved for Financing – if needed. Consult with a loan officer, organize financial records, obtain pre-approval letter.
Starting the financing process early will help us make sure we are looking at homes in the right price range. It will also give you a ‘heads-up’ in case there are some credit issues or anything else in the way of you getting the loan on the house you want. Getting a pre-approval is not an obligation for a loan and you can talk with more than one lender. The pre-approval will tell you how much home you can afford, give you the power to negotiate and even make an offer, and show sellers you’re a qualified buyer. If you need to know where to start with financing, we can help. Need help with your down payment? We can direct you to down-payment and closing cost assistance programs. Contact us
Step 3: Finding Your Perfect Home. Determine homes in price range, select lifestyle and neighborhoods, select the home!
We will perform an initial search to find homes matching your criteria and set up an email alert so we’ll be the first to know when a new listing enters the market that matches your criteria. A do-it-yourself-er? Use our Perfect Home Finder and receive email updates when properties hit the market that fit your criteria! When you find homes that you want to view, we will schedule viewings and give you a tour of the homes and neighborhoods. It’s also good idea to visit your preferred neighborhoods at different times of the day and on different days of the week to observe patters of noise and traffic.
Step 4: Making an Offer. Determine fair market value of the home, decide on financing options, decide on terms such as deposit, date of possession and repairs (if needed).
We will conduct research on home values in your chosen area and will assist in determining how much to offer. In this competitive market it is crucial to know what makes a winning offer. If you have already lost out on a home in a multiple offer situation, you understand how frustrating it is to have a losing offer. We are here to help. Contact us
Step 5: Negotiating the Offer. Agent presents offer to listing agent, negotiate price and terms as needed, arrange inspections and review results, manage transaction details.
As your agents, we will be your advocate during all negotiations. We will assist you in strategizing for the best terms and price. We will deliver your message clearly and professionally to the seller and their agent. We will keep the seller and their agent moving in a timely manner and keep the transaction at arm’s length while maintaining a professional attitude and demeanor.
Step 6: Processing the Loan. Complete loan application, underwriter reviews file, lender arranges appraisal, contingencies removed, final loan approval given.
Once the contract for purchase as been finalized, you will need the final approval of your lender to finance the purchase. Final approval means unconditional – all conditions of the loan have been removed. It’s important for you to submit documentation in a timely manner and provide your lender with additional documents as required. After the appraisal, and verification of clear title from the title company, final approval will be given. Your lender will provide you with an expectation of payment and closing costs. We will communicate with your appraiser and stay in touch with your loan officer. Start home search now.
Step 7: Closing and Funding: Select homeowners insurance, arrange a final walk-through of property, obtain certified funds for closing, arrange for utilities and movers, sign loan papers at title company.
Just before settlement, we will make one last inspection of the property to ensure that the home is in the condition we expect. The title company will provide you with a settlement statement to review prior to closing that will show how much money you will need to bring to the closing table. At closing you will sign documents, the loan will be funded, title will be recorded, and you will be a homeowner!
Have additional questions? Browse our Educational Video Series.
Ready to start the home buying process? Contact us today!