Buying a Home
FINDING YOUR HOME
getting pre-approved or at least pre-qualified
By getting pre-approved, you know exactly how much home you can afford. There is nothing worse than finding your dream home, only to find out that you cannot qualify for a loan to buy it. A pre-approval also strengthens your bargaining power when negotiating with a seller.
Determining your wants and needs
Our agents have several methods to help you determine your wants and needs. We have found the most effective method is for everyone who will be living in your home to sit down and fill out my wants and needs worksheet. This forces you, as a group, to really analyze everyone's expectations in your new home.
The Search Begins
At this stage, your agent will compile a packet of information and pictures of all of the properties available that match your wants and needs. You will select 5 - 10 properties you would like to look at on our first tour of homes.
Reanalyzing your wants and needs
Often times after our first day of looking at homes, you will gain a clearer insight on what it is you want and need in your new home. If this is the case, your agent will get you a new packet of homes and you will begin the process again.
The Search Continues - Previewing Properties
After touring homes with you, our agent will usually have a pretty good idea of what you are looking for in a home. At this point, they will preview all of the remaining homes that match your wants and needs profile. Together, you will tour the homes that best fit your criteria. If you wish you can also do a drive by of all the available homes and give your agent a list of the ones you want to get inside of.
New Properties On The Market
In addition to checking the MLS database at least once a day, your agent will input your information into the MLS database, which notifies them via e-mail when new properties are added that match your search criteria. As new properties become available, they may tour the property with or without you (your choice).
If your search criteria is narrow enough, you agent may send postcards to all of the homeowners who have properties that match your wants and needs letting them know that there is a qualified prospective buyer interested in homes like theirs. This method has proven to be very effective for buyers with limited options.
making an offer
Determining Your Offering Price
Once you have found the right house, your agent will prepare a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) on the property to help you determine the fair market value of the property.
Writing The Offer
Our goal is to get this home on your terms which includes things like closing dates, things to be included in the sale, and of course price and earnest money. Your agent will explain your contractual rights and responsibilities, talk about different negotiating strategies and give as much advise as they can. The offer will spell out how much you are willing to pay for the home, what type of financing you will obtain and a myriad of other important details and dates relevant to the pur-chase of the property.
Negotiating With The Sellers
After the paperwork is completed, your agent will deliver your offer to the Sellers or the Sellers agent. This is an important step because it gives them an opportunity to explain the offer, overcome objections, build rapport and answer any questions the sellers may have. The Sellers will do one of three things: Accept, reject or counter the offer. Often times negotiations will go back and forth several times before the offer is accepted or rejected.
TAKING CARE OF CONTINGENCIES
Home Owners Association
If the property is a part of a Home Owners Association, you and your agent will have an opportunity to read and accept the Documents pertaining to the association. Basically, these documents describe the rules, regulations and finances pertaining to the association.
The sellers of the property will provide you with a Title Insurance Policy. This policy protects you, the buyer, against loss arising from disputes over ownership of a property. You will have an opportunity to review the policy with your agent and determine if there are any exceptions to the policy that you find objectionable.
You have the right to have an inspection of the property prior to closing. We recommend you hire a professional inspector to help you with this task. If you find any problems with the property, you can ask the seller to repair them or compensate you for future repairs.
Your lender will hire an appraiser to determine if the property is worth the price you are paying. If the appraisal comes back low, you will have several options depending on the contract.
CLOSING AND POSSESSION
The "closing" is actually comprised of two separate closings, however they happen at the same time. At the real estate closing you and the seller will sign closing documents relating to the transfer of the property. The loan closing takes place when you sign the loan documents. After all documents are signed, the lender disburses funds to the closing agent, seller is paid and title to home is yours.
The time and date of possession of the property is negotiated on the contract. Upon possession, you can start moving in!