Purchasing a home is stressful for many people, but it really is not that complicated with a little planning ahead of time. So you'll understand exactly what to expect, I like to supply my buyers with an outline of the process. Here are my nine steps to buying a home.
Step 1 – Get ready to purchase a home
There are plenty of things you'll want to do prior to beginning your home search. When you start your search, you'll want to form an outline of features you want, decide on the school districts you prefer to live in, and begin planning your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than or close to 1/3 of your net monthly income is a good rule of thumb to follow.
Step 2 – Get with an experienced Real Estate Agent
This is where I can help. I will schedule a time to get together so we can talk about your real estate needs and get an idea of your future plans. We'll talk about everything from neighborhoods, schools in the area, the mortgage and housing industries, and any other economic factors that might affect your purchase today or in the future.
In addition, I'll help you facilitate the loan process. There are some great mortgage professionals in the area, and I partner with a lot of them, so you'll be in great hands. They'll help you decide which type of loan is best for you, as well as help you get approved.
Step 3 – Start looking for a house
After our first meeting, I'll start looking for available homes on the market that are a great fit for you. I'll preview many of the homes to screen out those that don't fit, and then we'll schedule appointments to view the homes when it's most convenient for you.
As we view homes, I'll point out positive features, as well as negative ones. And I'll ask you about things you like and dislike. Oftentimes, buyers update their wish list as we tour houses and some things become far more crucial than others. If that happens, I'll go back through all the listings once again and narrow it down to the home you've been wishing for.
Step 4 – Get a grasp of the market
My knowledge of the Richardson/Plano and surrounding housing market is a fundamental advantage in your house search. I am familiar with the neighborhoods and schools, and I will alert you to what neighborhoods are "hot" and demand prompt action and the rest that are "cool" and allow for thoughtful analysis.
As we tour homes, I'll let you know when the list price has room for bargaining and when I trust the house is "priced to sell." Any real estate agent will claim to understand the home market, but keep an eye out, and be sure to ask your agent a lot of questions. If it doesn't seem like they know everything, call me at 214.477.1658 or e-mail me at Dan@WashburnRealtyGroup.com, and I'll be happy to answer any questions you might have. My understanding of the market will help you stay a step ahead through the entire process.
Step 5 – Find the home you've been looking for
When we find your dream home, I'll meticulously develop your home purchase offer. The offer will be tailored with your needs in mind, including appropriate contingencies. A few examples are getting financing, completing the inspection, and a clean title.
Upon turning in your offer, you'll need to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit given to the title company to secure an offer to purchase the property, and it's most often put towards the cost of closing. If the seller accepts your offer, we should close on the home about 30 to 60 days after. This allows plenty of time for your mortgage financing.
Step 6 – Negotiate
A lot of deals aren't closed on the first offer, and it's widely common to receive a counter offer. Don't let this intimidate you. We'll talk about whether or not to agree to the counter offer, present our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and move on.
How aggressively we negotiate the deal depends on market circumstances. We'll also work within your budget. And when it's all said and done, we'll create a deal that works well for you.
Step 7 – Obtain a loan
After we sign the final sales contract, you'll start working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. This shouldn't take long at all if you've been pre-approved, but you'll want to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll take care of all the property information your lender needs to close the loan.
Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) detailing closing costs from your lender within three days of receiving your application. This estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements order that it has to include all closing costs and fall within a strict range of accuracy, and I'll go over the estimate with you.
Then it's time to close on your house. This will most likely happen at a title company or escrow office and should be a smooth transaction.
Step 9 – Move in
You made it! It's time to move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, be sure to contact me at 214.477.1658 or send me an e-mail.