Thinking of Buying? Let’s Get Started!
When it comes to buying a home, there are a few tips and tricks you should know. Knowing the following items about buying a home can save you a lot of stress and headache down the road.
It is very important for you to get pre-approved for a home loan before shopping. This not only helps you have buying power when making an offer on a home, it also helps you to know how much home you can actually afford. You do not want to get your heart set on a home that is out of your price range. Loan pre-approval can help you stay on track with your budget.
Discuss Home Must-Haves
There are some factors of your new home that you cannot live without and some that are negotiable. Be sure to discuss these in detail with your significant other and your realtor. This keeps everyone on the same page and assists in knowing if a house is worth looking at. If a home looks nice but doesn’t have the must-have items on your list, keep moving. You do not want to settle for a home that is not what you really and truly want.
Make an Offer
Once you’ve found the home of your dreams it’s time to make an offer on the home. That means going back to your realtor’s office and signing paperwork or signing electronically. It can also include you putting down earnest money with the contract so that the seller knows you’re serious.Your realtor will discuss with you a proper amount to put down, and also what a good offer would be for the home. Sometimes you can go lower than asking price to start negotiations.
After your contract is accepted, home inspections take place. These are not only for your peace of mind, they are required by certain lenders and loan types. Also, you want to know if the home is just exactly as the seller has represented that it is. These inspections will check everything from plumbing to air conditioning and the roof. In most cases, you will have to pay the inspectors for their work out of pocket and your realtor may offer a list of those they work with regularly if you request.
Now that you’ve made an offer, the waiting starts. Your loan financing will need to be secured and officially approved by the mortgage lender. This means that you’ll need to turn in, if you haven’t already, paperwork showing income, taxes, etc. to get the loan finalized. Once the loan is officially approved, then you’re heading into the final stretches of the home buying process.
This is where the negotiations may come in again later in the process. The home must appraise, have the value of or more than, the contract selling price. If the home appraises for more, you’re in good shape. If the home appraises for less than what the seller is asking, or you’ve agreed to, there need to be some more negotiations. If the seller will not come off of the asking price, the process may stop here as lenders might not continue the loan if the value is insufficient for the terms of the financing applied for.
Your loan officer will call and schedule the home for a closing date, typically 30-45 days after the process has started and per the terms of the contract. This is because they have to get all the paperwork, funding, inspections, etc. back into the office and underwriting to get the loan fully approved.
You may sign papers at a lawyer’s office or at the title office, depending on what is best for everyone involved. This will include you and your agents, the lawyer or title officer, and the buyer and their agent. Prior to closing you should wire you remaining balance due to the closing company.
Once you’ve signed the papers and have the keys in hand, it’s time to move in! Depending on your schedule, some people move in the day of closing or the following day if needed. It’s up to you! You can move into your home whenever you’re ready after the closing process is finished. Now it’s time to unpack your belongings and start enjoying the new home you’re going to love for years to come.