1. GETTING PRE-APPROVAL
The first step in your home search is finding out exactly how much you can afford and secure in financing to make this purchase. In the current competitive market, sellers want to know you have funding measures in place and can get to the closing table.
Pre-approval helps you:
- Understand your financial condition
- Know exactly how much home you can afford before you begin your home search
- Strengthen your purchasing power when making an offer
2. Search For Homes
Once you have your pre-approval letter, we can start the home search. I will learn about your wants and needs and connect you to a personal portal that will immediately email you listings as they become available. We will then schedule times to view the homes you want to see.
3. Make An Offer
Once we find the right home, we’ll put in an offer! There are many factors that influence the market value of a home. As your REALTOR, I will give you the insight and information you need to make an offer you’re comfortable with. Some of the factors to consider include:
- How long the home has been on the market
- If the price has been reduced
- How much the home is worth — I will provide a comparable market analysis (CMA) showing the list and sale prices for similar homes in your area
- If there are multiple offers
- Other items that might be included in the sale (furniture, hot tub, etc.)
- The “list to sale price ratio,” an indication of how competitive the market is for homes in this area
- Why the seller is selling (if its possible to find out)
- Whether the seller is offering an assumable loan or financing
As a team, we will come up with the right offer for you. Once the Offer is written, I will present it to the seller’s agent. At that point the seller can accept your offer, reject it or counter it to start the negotiation process. As your agent will work with you to plan a strategy to ensure the most advantageous terms and acceptable pricing for you and your budget.
4. Closing On Your New Home
Once your offer has been accepted, the closing process begins. Here are some of the typical steps involved.
Home inspection — Most property sales are contingent on the results of a home inspection, which is paid for by the buyer. The inspection typically occurs within 10 days of offer acceptance, and includes a review of the home’s exterior elements like the roof, siding, trim and windows, as well as kitchen and bathroom fixtures and appliances and major systems like heating and cooling, plumbing and electrical.
If defects are discovered during the inspection, you may exercise the remedy described in your offer or negotiate with the seller to determine what repairs will be made.
Title search — This is a historical review of all legal documents relating to ownership of the property to ensure that there are no claims against the title of the property. It is also recommended that you purchase title insurance in case the records contain errors or there are mistakes in the review process.
Appraisal — As a standard part of the mortgage process, your lender will order an appraisal report to ensure that the loan will be guaranteed by the home’s value. Your loan will typically be based on the home’s appraisal value or the sale value, whichever is the lowest.
Final walk-through — If it’s requested in the contract, you’ll be given the chance to look at the home to make sure it’s in the same condition as when you signed the sales agreement.
Closing costs — In addition to your deposit and down payment, there are a variety of other costs involved in closing including:
- Loan origination fees, appraisals and reports
- Surveys and inspections
- Mortgage insurance
- Hazard insurance
- Title insurance, notary and escrow fees
- Recording fees and stamps
Remember, all closing costs are negotiable.