How to Buy a Home
Steps to Owning a Home
Buying a home is an exciting time, but the homebuying process can also be complex. Many factors affect how long the purchasing process actually takes, but there are a few steps that are universal in most home purchases:
- Decide if you’re ready: Examine your personal financial goals, determine your financial readiness and become a good mortgage candidate.
- Get a pre-approval letter and set your budget: A pre-approval letter tells sellers that a lender believes you qualify for a specific mortgage, thus speaking to your buying power.
- Decide on a property: I will help you narrow down potential properties after you determine your budget and what you really want in a home. I can send you a link to a list of properties taken from the Multiple Listing Service that meet the specifications you desire in a home. This list is updated as the Multiple Listing Service is updated. As soon as a new property that meets your requirements is listed, you will receive an email letting you know.
- Make an offer: Your budget isn’t just about price; you can also negotiate necessary repairs, which party pays for closing costs and other items.
You made an offer on a home and the seller has accepted. The Residential Purchase Agreement outlines the details of the sale and is held by your escrow officer until the transaction closes. However, there are still some steps to complete before you can close the transaction and move in.
- Inspect the home: You may wish to schedule a buyer’s home inspection, wherein you can get a professional opinion of the condition of the home. I encourage most buyers to order one as it lets you know what repairs may need to be done, as well as their cost.
- Review and Sign Disclosures from the Seller: The seller is required to inform you of material facts relating to the purchase of the home. It is important to read these disclosures carefully so you are full informed about the condition of the home.
- Obtain full loan approval: Your lender will guide you through the process of obtaining loan approval, which involves a review of your finances and an appraisal of the property. Depending on the lender, some repairs to the home may need to be done as well.
- Check repairs and prepare to close: A final walk-through of the home will help you make sure that agreed-upon repairs were made and other items in the purchase agreement were fulfilled.
- Close the transaction: At closing, your lender may require you to purchase homeowners insurance. This is also when you can purchase an owner’s policy of title insurance, which will help protect you from past issues that could affect your ownership rights.