The Home Buying Process
It starts with…
1. A Conversation with Richard
The initial conversation is to get to know each other and your situation.
- Why are you interested in buying a home?
- Where are you in this process?
- What is your timeline?
- Do you own or rent now?
We’ll take as much time as we need to discuss your short and long term goals followed by a tailored, step-by-step walk through of what to expect in the upcoming months.
2. Determine Eligibility with a Lender
Many home buyers make the mistake of deeming themselves eligible for a mortgage based on their income, assets, & credit score. While you may have a great income, plenty of assets, and an 800 credit score, there are hundreds of other factors lenders and underwriters are evaluating to determine your qualification levels.
How you file your taxes, where you currently reside, your outstanding debt, your employment classification, and everything in between is up for review– see Tips to Prepare for Purchasing a Home.
Richard’s longstanding relationships with trustworthy mortgage lenders allow him to recommend the right one for you. Not sure where to start? Just ask!
3. Narrow Down Search Criteria
After you’ve determined your budget, it’s time to narrow down your key criteria. Identifying a specific area, the type of home (townhouse, condo, single family, investment, etc.), and characteristics within that home are your first steps.
4. Begin The Search!
Our goal now is to get out there and start looking. It takes seeing the homes, the neighbors, the location, the layout, the condition, the finishes, etc. etc. etc. to get a clear picture of whether or not you can make this house your home.
It’s important to be patient, yet responsive, in this fast moving market. If we’re not careful this exciting hunt becomes exhausting and can start to feel like a never-ending chore. That’s why going over your search criteria together in the initial conversation is so critical. It sets the stage for the search and insures we feel that excitement that comes with buying a new home from start to finish.
5. Writing The Offer
The terms of any real estate contract are specific and incredibly important. There is much more to negotiate than simply purchase price. In today’s market, homes are being bought and sold in a matter of days, often hours. It’s important to write the winning offer the first time.
Having an experienced REALTOR® represent you is critical to paying a fair price in addition to negotiating favorable terms in all areas of the contract including inspection dates, financing periods, personal property included, and closing dates just to name a few.
Congratulations! We have successfully negotiated an accepted offer and we are on to the inspection period.
This is the critical time of the transaction where you have the liberty (and obligation!) to do your complete due diligence on the property. A standard home inspection covers things like your HVAC, roof, plumbing, electrical, appliances, structural components as well as interior and exterior of the home.
It’s important to note there is no such thing as a perfect inspection. Every home, regardless of when it was built, is going to have imperfections. Our goal is to avoid major surprises to big ticket items we weren’t already aware of.
After the inspections are complete, your lender will send a certified property appraiser to assess the value of your home. It is important your home’s value is equal to or greater than the amount of money you are receiving from your mortgage lender.
The appraiser will look at a number of things to help determine the value. Comparable homes sold is the most common, but they will also take into account the upgrades, renovations, finishes, and quality of construction to help arrive at a reasonable determination.
8. Closing Day
The days leading up to the closing day are very important and can make a big impact on how smoothly this last leg of the transaction goes.
Prior to today you likely wired the closing funds from your bank to the title company, made arrangements for utilities, and purchased your home insurance policy. It is important not to allow any hiccups to delay the closing, and it’s Richard’s responsibility to prepare you properly.
Soon enough it will be time to sit back, sign the papers, and collect the keys!