Below is only a general guide to the buying
process. For more information and/or to discuss your property search,
please contact us anytime.
STEP#1: Get Pre-Qualified/Approved for Your Loan
Unless you are buying with all cash, this is a good beginning step.
It is important to know how much property you can afford and how much of
a loan you are qualified for before spending hours, days, weeks, even
months driving around looking at properties. Last thing you want is to
find that dream home only to receive the news that you are not qualified
to buy it! Save yourself the time by going to your local mortgage
professional and getting your loan pre-approval process going.
Here are just some items you may want to gather before meeting with your mortgage professional:
1) W-2’s, 1099-MISC (for independent contractors), 2 years of tax returns (for the self-employed), etc.
2) Most recent 2-4 months of bank statements
3) List of all your
expenses, assets, secured and unsecured debts (most of these will be on
your credit report, but always good to make your own list)
STEP #2: Choose an Experienced and Professional Realtor
Purchasing real estate is often people’s biggest life-time purchase
and is not something to be taken lightly. Therefore it is always
advisable to hire a Realtor who has experience
representing buyers and one who you understands your needs and is
looking out after your best interest. You will likely be dealing with
them on a regular basis throughout your property search so be sure it’s
someone who you can get along with and trust.
Once you selected a Realtor, be sure to provide them with your
property search criteria. Its important to provide as much detail as
possible as this will help narrow down your search so you can start
looking at properties in your desired location and in your affordable
We work with buyers for free and would be happy to discuss your real
estate needs if you do not already have a Realtor in mind. Contact us
STEP #3: Search for Properties
Your Realtor should be sending you listings that match your criteria
and its now time to go view properties you like, either with your
Realtor or driving by on your own time.
Do Your Due Diligence!
While your Realtor’s job is to show you
properties and give you as much information about them, it’s equally
important for you to do some of your own research and perform your due
diligence. Whether it be driving around the neighborhood, searching
information about the school district, looking up crime statistics or
verifying local zoning ordinances, these are all essential elements that
will likely play a big role in your final purchase decision. Your
Realtor should help you with this too, but its always good to know
yourself first hand.
STEP #4: Make Offer
You just found your dream home! Now it’s time to make an offer.
Realtor Helps You Determine Fair Market Value
Prior to submitting your offer, your
Realtor should provide you with comparable sales information to
determine fair market value of the property. This will help avoid
overpaying for the property or writing too low of an offer that it does
not give you a good chance for seller acceptance. And if there are
multiple competing offers, this is even more important.
STEP #5: Offer Accepted!
Congrats! Your offer has been accepted. Now is the time to stay in
close communication with your Realtor as well as your mortgage
As your real estate professional, we are here to help you throughout
the sale process. We will make sure all deadlines, terms &
conditions and contingencies are clearly communicated and satisfied, as
well as helping with any further negotiations necessary.
STEP #6: Close
As you approach closing, there are few important things you should keep in mind:
1) Avoid making any
major purchases, such as buying a car. Remember, your loan approval is
based heavily on your debt-to-income ratio, so making these types of
purchases prior to closing could negatively affect your loan and
essentially could dis-qualify you for a loan.
2) Make sure you are
easily accessible for both your Realtor and mortgage professional. There
may be last minute items/paperwork requested that need your timely
3) Make sure to be
available to do a final walk-through of the property. If there are any
repairs you’ve requested the seller to complete prior to closing, its
important to know for sure these are done satisfactorily prior to
signing final closing documents.
If everything goes according to plan, you will sign final
closing documents (likely at the title/escrow company) and become the
rightful new owner!