This step can begin with a simple phone call to a Mortgage Broker. Enough information can be given over the phone to decide if going further is the right option for you. It can also help you find out exactly what you need to do to move further. Getting pre-qualified is free of charge. Getting per-qualified will help us narrow your search for a home and make your offer much stronger. Most brokerage firms will not accept offers on homes with out a per-qualification letter. For most people, finding the right home begins with a house-hunting strategy combining personal preferences, guidance from others (including an agent) and a mix of neighborhood exploring and online search.
For some, the search takes a while; others find what they want right away. In either case, your real estate agent can be a huge resource of insight and guidance, working through issues or complications that arise along the way.
Here’s a general outline of what to expect during a home purchase, from the buyer’s perspective.
Buyers make a purchase offer
This is it! You’ve found the home of your dreams, looked over disclosure documents, reviewed comparable sales data, talked it over with your agent and submitted an offer. The sellers may accept buyers first offer, but more often will return a counteroffer. In fact, additional negotiations are common, and your agent will help you through this generally stressful stage.
The sellers accept
Once everyone is happy with the terms, the parties have reached what is known as mutual acceptance and enter into a Residential Purchase Agreement.
Buyers put up earnest money
To solidify buyers intent to purchase, they will place a deposit, or earnest money, on the property. The amount varies, but is generally at least 1 percent of the purchase price. This amount is agreed upon in the contract negotiation stage. Buyer writes the check to the escrow company, not the seller. Note: This money counts toward buyers down payment later.
Buyers earnest money deposit goes into an escrow account, where all funds will be held until closing, when they are then distributed to the right people (lender, mortgage broker, title insurer, real estate agents, etc.)
The lender inspects title history and orders a property appraisal.
The lender needs key information about the property before granting a loan. This is when potential problems can come to light. For example, the appraisal could show a lower value than the purchase price, or the lender could have trouble finding comparable homes. Also, the title search could turn up liens or other problems.
A home inspection takes place
Buyer will hire an physical inspector – generally, your agent will suggest one, or provide several options – to check the home and point out minor and major problems that should be fixed before closing.
At this point, buyer will still have the option of backing out of the transaction. Buyer generally has 17 days from acceptance of contract to do all their discovery. If buyer decides for any reason in the 17 day inspection period to back-out of the transaction, they can without any loss of deposit.
Through your agent, you’ll submit a list of requested repairs, and the sellers will have the option to complete the repairs, do some of them, but not others, or reject the request. The sides will negotiate until reaching an agreement.
If the buyers are happy with the physical inspection, appraisal and title search, and everything is good to go, then all contingencies can be removed, paving the way to a closing. This happens on the 17th day or the agreed upon date to remove contingencies.
Closing time arrives
Once contingencies are removed and financing is set, all parties sign a seemingly endless stack of disclosures, and the transaction closes when the bank releases the fund to the escrow company. Escrow can then call for closing. The deed is then recorded in the new owners name or names.
Packing begins! 🙂
When the final signatures are in place, it’s time to put down the pens, shake hands, exchange smiles and start packing for the move! We love helping you with your home purchase.
Call Me today I can get you on the road to home ownership.