What to Expect When You Buy a Home…
Assemble Your ‘A’ Team:
- Not all agents are created equal find a Realtor® you like and trust!
- Enlist the services of a trustworthy lender with experienced loan officers.
- A lender will pre-approve you for a loan
- A lender can advise you how to keep your credit score squeaky clean!
- Be realistic about what you can afford – do not fall in love with homes that cost more than your pre-approved loan amount.
- You will submit a purchase offer.
- Proof of funds will be needed to close the transaction.
- Proof of funds will include your down payment and closing costs.
- Your Realtor® and your lender will help you understand your closing cost fees.
- First-time homebuyer grants and programs can help you qualify for a home loan – Note: To qualify for funding assistance, you may need to take a class or seminar.
- You may have to submit many offers before yours is accepted.
- Expect counter offers to go back and forth until an agreement is reached.
- Be prepared to give your best and final offer, and if accepted- make sure you are in town to handle the paperwork!
- You only have three (3) business days to get the earnest money into escrow.
- Be aware of security issues if your money will be wired to escrow from your account.
- When you find ‘the’ house, your Realtor will share sales prices of similar homes (comparables) to help you make an informed decision, and a strong purchase offer.
- Doing your due diligence with the loan means providing all documentation needed to the lender.
- Your lender will order a home value appraisal on the home you want to buy.
- Payment of the appraisal is due in advance of the service being performed.
- You must also pay for your home inspection when the inspection is done.
- When you have signed-off on all disclosures and contingencies, do not make any financial purchases during this tim
You Will Become Obsessed:
- With looking at homes everywhere including online!
- You’ll love to share homes you’ve found with family and friends, don’t forget to share with your Realtor® (Especially if you change plans or your ‘must-haves’).
- You will view every open house as an open invitation – don’t forget to take your Realtors’® business card with you if they are not with you.
- If you look at new home models; take your Realtor® with you on the first visit.The Small Print:
- You have 10-17 days to do all of your inspections depending on what was negotiated. You should attend the home inspection, or at a minimum attend the recap at the end of the inspection. Schedule any additional inspections that are needed. Payment is due at the time of the inspection(s).
- You will need to remove all contingencies – typically 17-21 days after making your offer. If you change your mind about something not covered in the contract, your earnest money may be at risk.
What you’ll Want and Need to Know:
- Do not expect to be able to pop into the house you are buying at anytime. The sellers are still living there, and you need to respect that.
- It may take a week to receive your appraisal report.
- You need to read and sign all documents forwarded to you- escrow papers, HOA documents, loan disclosures, house disclosures, Realtor®
- You will need to read the home inspection report and make a list of repairs concerning health and safety issues that you can request the seller to complete.
- The seller will review your request for repairs and will let you know what they will or will not do.
- You should survey the area around the house; visit it at different times and many days of the week. Drive around the area and know what the neighborhood offers- good and bad. So you can make an informed decision.
- When you sign-off on all disclosures and contingencies, it becomes a waiting game.
- About 5-7 days before closing you will do a final walk-thru to ensure the house is in the same condition as when you purchased it.
- A couple of days before closing you will be schedule a time to meet with a notary and sign loan documents.
- When documents have been signed and returned to escrow, they will be sent to the lender.
- The lender will review all documents and also review your credit report again, and then decide whether to fund the loan.
- When a loan has been funded, you must wait for it to be recorded. When the home is recorded, the home is legally yours.
- Some sellers negotiate to stay in the house a few days after closing – usually at no rent. You will be getting the keys after they vacate the house.
- You may get frustrated… Keep on looking and presenting offers.