Step 1: Choosing a Realtor®
Choose a licensed Realtor® who can legally represent your needs as a buyer. When selecting a real estate agent from the pool of agents, it is best to choose an agent who is dedicated to buyers needs and ends with the satisfied feeling at closing that you were protected in all aspects of the transaction.
Step 2: Understanding your finances
Understanding your finances is the next step. It is time saving for buyer and real estate agent to have a clear price range to use when looking for a home. There is no sense looking at homes that you cannot afford and or spending more than you have to. Having a pre-approval letter will propel your home buying process into the next step. Note that it is best to select an agent who must keep all your information confidential and Realtors who are Exclusive Buyer’s Agents do this.
Step 3: What are your Needs? What are your Wants?
These two questions sometimes get their wires crossed once you begin looking at homes. It is best to start out with a checklist to refer to while looking at property. If you think about it ahead of time and write it down, you are more apt to find what you need quickly. However, deciding what is a need and what is a want, may be harder than you think.
Step 4: Search for your new home
Once you have decided on the basic needs and wants in your home selection, the fun part begins with search for properties that meet your criteria. To get started your Exclusive Buyer’s Agent will set up your search criteria and you will start to receive properties that match your criteria as soon as they come on the market. The agent will set up appointments to meet your scheduling needs and view properties with you.
Step 5: Getting the house you want…making an offer
After you select your future dream home, your Exclusive Buyer Agent will discuss pricing strategies, competitive market values, etc and then prepare all the pages in your offer. Your offer will be rather detailed and include many contingencies to protect all of your interests. Negotiating the offer once written is under your supervision, albeit, through your real estate agent. Remember having an exclusive buyer’s agent allows you worry-free negotiation with all your information held in the strictest confidence.
Step 6: What to do after your offer is accepted
Once an offer is signed by both parties, buyer and seller, you are under agreement and have a contract. Within your contract are certain contingencies that have been written in on your behalf. An Exclusive Buyer’s Agent will protect your financial deposit, by walking you through the contingencies of your agreement and keep you on schedule. This is a time where dates and information collected must be handled in an efficient manner to be kept within the outline of your agreement. As a buyer it is in your best interest to have the home inspected by a certified home inspector. Once that step is completed there may be other contingencies pertinent to the agreement. An appraisal will be ordered by the lender to evaluate what amount the bank will allow you, the buyer, to obtain for a loan. An appraisal amount should be the same or more than the amount you have agreed to pay in your contract, otherwise, more negotiations will need to take place. Financial commitment is when your mortgage company or bank has approved the appraisal and condition of your home and completed their review of your personal finances and approved your loan. Once this occurs you can secure a date and time for signing and arrange for movers. At this point the attorney or title company will do a title search of the property to assure that it is clear of any liens or clouds regarding true ownership of the entire parcel. They will also prepare the closing statement or balance sheet which clearly shows all monies in and out from buyer and seller and they will coordinate all documents for the closing. You will need to procure homeowner insurance at this time as well.
Step 7: What is a Closing?
Here you are ready to sign all the paperwork and make the house yours. All the steps have brought you to the point of having your belongings in boxes ready to move. Your Exclusive Buyer’s Agent has brought you through the buying process making it worry-free and easy to understand. Now you get to enjoy the thought that your dream is becoming a reality. The closing is the end of the buying process when you sign all the papers and make the house your home. Allow 1-2 hours for the closing appointment.
Once the closing is complete – move in, unpack, sleep! Enjoy your home!