THE BUYING PROCESS
There is a lot that goes into a real estate transaction. Finding the right property is just the first step! Rest assured that I am with you every step of the way to a successful completion!
Finding your home
By getting pre-approved, you know exactly how much home you can afford. There is nothing worse than finding your dream home, only to find out that you cannot qualify for a loan to buy it. A pre-approval also strengthens your bargaining power when negotiating with a seller.
Determining your Wants and Needs
I have several methods to help you determine your wants and needs. I have found the most effective method is for everyone who will be living in your home to sit down and fill out my wants and needs worksheet. This will encourage you, as a group, to really analyze everyone's expectations in your new home and begin to formulate a group wants and needs list.
The Search begins
At this stage, I will create a search in the MLS, which has the most up-to-date information on new listings, it is the main source of all listings that meet your specific criteria. From there you will be able to mark properties as “Favorites,” “Possibilities,” or “Discarded.” I will be able to see on the back side what properties you’ve categorized in the aforementioned buckets. If you would like to see any in person, we can set an appointment.
New properties on the market
Any time new listings are added to the MLS database, you will automatically be sent that listing if it fits your specific criteria. If you are unable to tour a house you are interested in right away, I can do a video chat with you to make it possible for you to see the house virtually, without you even being there!
If your search criteria is narrow enough, I will send postcards to all of the homeowners who have properties that match your wants and needs letting them know that I have a qualified prospective buyer interested in homes like theirs. This method has proven to be very effective for buyers with limited options.
MAKING AN OFFER
Determining your Offer Price
Once you have found the right house, I will prepare a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) on the property to help you determine the fair market value of the property.
Writing the offer
Our goal is to get your preferred home on your terms which includes things like closing dates, items or parameters to be included in the sale, and of course price, earnest money, and down payment. I will explain your contractual rights and responsibilities, talk about different negotiating strategies and give as much advice as I can. The offer will spell out how much you are willing to pay for the home, what type of financing you will obtain and a myriad of other important details and dates relevant to the purchase of the property.
Seller paid closing costs
Often times, I’m asked about the seller helping pay some or all of the buyers closing costs like escrow fees, loan costs, etc. The general rule of thumb is when we are in a “balanced market,” some sellers might be willing to help. When we are in a “buyers’ market,” most sellers are willing to help. When we are in a “sellers’ market,” most sellers are not willing to provide financial help to the buyer.
Negotiation with sellers
After we complete the paperwork, I will deliver your offer to the Sellers or the Sellers agent. This is an important step because it gives me an opportunity to explain the offer, overcome objections, build rapport and answer any questions the sellers may have. The Sellers will do one of three things: Accept, reject or counter the offer. Often times negotiations will go back and forth several times before the offer is accepted or rejected.
TAKING CARE OF CONTINGENCIES
Home owners association
If the property is a part of a Home Owners Association, you will have an opportunity to read and accept the Documents pertaining to the association. Basically, these documents describe the rules, regulations and finances pertaining to the association.
The sellers of the property will provide you with a Title Insurance Policy. This policy protects you, the buyer, against loss arising from disputes over ownership of a property. You will have an opportunity to review the policy and determine if there are any exceptions to the policy that you find objectionable. If you are getting a mortgage, the lender will require you to purchase a lenders title policy.
You have the right to have an inspection of the property prior to closing. I recommend you hire a professional inspector to help you with this task. If you find any problems with the property , you may be able to ask the seller to repair them or compensate you for future repairs. You can hire an inspector of your choosing or ask me for a great referral.
When possible, I will work with the appraiser to make sure he or she has all the information about the property to make an informed and fair appraisal.
CLOSING AND POSSESSION
The "closing" is actually comprised of two separate closings, however they happen at the same time - the securing of the loan and the transfer of the property. At the real estate closing you and the seller will sign closing documents relating to the transfer of the property. Some buyers will sign on closing day and some buyers will sign a day or two in advance. This depends on when your lender gets the loan documents to the escrow company. Sellers can sign their closing documents weeks in advance, as long as the escrow company has the documents prepared.
The loan closing takes place after you sign the loan documents. After all documents are signed, the transaction is submitted to the county for final recording of title, and is finally closed—the home is yours! Standard contracts have the buyer gaining possession of the house at 9 p.m. on the day of closing. Often times, if the house is vacant, you will get the keys to your new home as soon as the recording is final.
As your buying broker, I will make arrangements to get your new keys to you.