If you’re thinking about buying your new home, you’re probably looking for some advice. Looking for a new home can be an exciting and challenging experience. Having a real estate professional that takes the time to listen to you and understand your unique needs and lifestyle is very important. Our agents work hard to find a good fit for you, and to make your buying experience a pleasant one. We handle the intricate details of the agreements and negotiations for you. We’re there for you every step of the way.
Deciding To Buy
The decision to purchase a home is one of the biggest and best decisions you will make in life. A home is the largest investment most people will ever make. How do you know if it's the right time for you to buy?
There is never a wrong time to buy the right home. The key is finding a good buy and taking the time to carefully evaluate your finances.
A home purchase is an important step in the path to financial freedom. Purchasing a home is a great investment that provides specific financial advantages like building equity, the potential value appreciation as well as tax benefits. Buying is looked at as an automatic savings plan that you cannot get from renting!
Here's the most important rule for keeping your stress to a minimum: you don't have to know everything because our agents are well prepared to help you through every step of this journey.
Hiring Your Agent
Remember, a good agent is one who you feel is actually listening to you. We put you first, your needs above our excitements. This journey is about your dream, and our place is to help align that dream with reality.
A great real estate agent will:
- Educate you about the current conditions and trends in the market.
- Help you analyze what you want and what you need in your next home.
- Guide you to homes that fit what you’re looking for.
- Coordinate the work of lawyers and other professionals involved in the process.
- Negotiate with the seller’s agent on your behalf.
- Check and double-check paperwork and deadlines.
- Work to solve any problems that may arise.
Lenders will pre-approve you for a certain amount, but they only see your finances on paper. Only you know what you're comfortable paying every month and only you will decide how much you're willing to grow or shrink your budget in order to get into your dream home.
6 steps to financing your home:
- Choose a loan officer.
- Apply for a loan and get preapproved.
- Determine what you want to pay and select a loan option.
- Submit to the lender an accepted purchase offer contract.
- Get an appraisal and title commitment.
- Obtain funding at closing.
Finding Your Home
Whether you’ve been preapproved or want to shop around; whether you’ve been all over the internet looking at houses or not, the question of where to begin can be daunting. There are a lot of homes to be found out there and some are more searchable than others. Diving into the realty pool without a guide can become overwhelming and confusing. A great agent will help you see homes that fit your criteria. The right home will meet all your important needs, and as many of your additional wants as possible.
Some questions you might ask yourself include:
- What do I want my home to be close to?
- How much space do I need and why?
- Which is more critical: location or size?
- Would I be interested in a fixer-upper?
- How important is home value appreciation?
- Is neighborhood stability a priority?
- Would I be interested in a condo?
- What features and amenities do I want? Which do I really need?
In most cases, as we look at homes, certain priorities adjust along the way.
Making An Offer
Once you've found a home you love, the next step is making a compelling offer. Emotions usually become sensitive once you've found a home you love, it's important to remember that a home is an investment. Your agent will research similar nearby properties to help you determine the market value, and fair price. Look to your agent to explain and guide you through the offer process.
The three basic components of your purchase offer are price, terms, and contingencies.
- Price is the dollar amount you are approved for, willing and able to pay.
- Terms cover the other financial and timing factors that will be included in the offer.
- Contingencies are clauses that let you out of the transaction if the house has a problem that didn't exist or which you weren't aware of when you went under contract. They specify any event that will need to take place in order for you to fulfill the contract.
Performing Due Diligence
Your love or endearment towards a particular property doesn't mean that it's perfect. In fact, this is where reason must rise above emotion. You'll need to have a property inspection and we recommend you attend it to expose hidden issues. This way you'll know what you are getting into before you sign closing papers.
- Your main concern is the possibility of structural damage. This can come from water damage, shifting ground, or poor construction when the house was built.
- Don't sweat the small stuff. It's the inspector's job to mark everything discovered no matter how large or small. The inspectors report may be long, but, things that are easily fixed can be low on a list of priority.
- If you have a big problem show up in your inspection report, you should bring in a specialist to further determine the reality of the situation.
- Even if your home passes inspection, you'll still need to buy a home owner's insurance policy. All homeowners have one that protects against loss or damage to the property itself and against liability in case someone sustains an injury while on the property.
You've made your offer and have completed the inspection process but, in order to ensure that you don't put your closing date, or your mortgage at risk, you have a few pre-closing responsibilities that you'll need to be mindful of. These include:
- Staying in control of your credit and finances. If you are tempted to make any large purchases during this time, it's best to talk to your lender first.
- Keeping in touch with your agent and lender, returning all phone calls and emails and completing paperwork promptly.
- Communicating with your agent at least once or twice a week, and verifying with your lender that all mortgage funding steps are completed.
- Conducting a final walk-through of the home with your agent.
- Confirming with your agent, home insurance professional, and lender that you have the settlement statement, certified funds, and evidence of insurance lined up prior to closing.
The finding and buying process is finished, but there should be a plan
going forward to maintain the property. Be sure to have routine
maintenance on the internal and external systems and functions of your
home. It is better to maintain than to have to fix big problems later.
Be sure to look for signs of leaks, damage, and wear.
Even though the sale portion is complete, your relationship with your agent doesn't need to end. Providing information for your tax returns, referring contractors and services, and analyzing your home's current market value is all part of what we do for you.
Register your criteria and Property Alert will let you know when properties are listed.Register