1. Mortgage Pre-approval
Unless you’re paying cash for your home, you’ll need to talk to a good local lender about obtaining a pre-approval letter for financing. The lender can provide answers to questions about interest rates, closing costs, loan products, down payment requirements, & monthly payment expectations. We can provide referrals for mortgage lenders if needed.
2. Buyer Consultation and Home Tour
We’ll sit down with you at our office to discuss your search criteria in detail, review available inventory, and answer any questions about the home buying process. This will maximize efficiency of your time looking at properties that meet your criteria and we can all be on the same page with your timeframe and homeownership goals.
After the available properties are narrowed down to your list of favorites, we will schedule buyer tours to see homes that not only fit your criteria but also have great resale potential. Navigating the search process to help you make a smart investment is our priority.
3. Making Offer and Acceptance
Once you have found The One, we will review the comparable sales data to analyze the list price and come up with an offer strategy. We will review the sales contract and offer terms and present the offer in writing to the listing agent. You will be guided through the negotiation process and once terms are mutually agreed by buyer and seller, the offer will be revised for the seller to sign. Once the contract is signed by both parties, you will be officially under contract and initial earnest money of typically $1000-$2500 will be due.
4. Attorney Review
You will have an attorney review contingency typically 5 or 7 business days to have an attorney review the contract after it is signed. We can provide referrals for local real estate attorneys if needed. If there is a condo association, this will be your opportunity to review all of the condo association documents, budget, and meeting minutes. Your attorney will negotiate amendments to the contract as well as formalize any inspection repairs/credits that the seller agreed to. You will pay for the attorney’s fee (typically $500-$850 or more for new construction deals) upon closing. Post attorney reviews the balance of earnest money (typically 3%-5% of total purchase price LESS initial earnest money) will be due.
5. Initial Earnest Money Due
An initial tender of earnest money will take place typically in an amount between $2,500 and $5,000 in the form of personal check or wire transfer. This amount is refundable inside the attorney review process should you decide to exit the transaction.
You will have an inspection contingency typically, 5 or 7 business days to conduct an inspection after the offer is signed. We can provide referrals for professional home inspectors if needed. If any serious issues are uncovered, you can negotiate seller repairs or credits at closing to have the repairs done yourself. You will pay the inspector upon having the inspection. Inspection costs vary from $300-$700 depending on the size of the home
7. Collect and Review Condo Documents
During the attorney review process you are given access to several important documents covering the home and/or building you are purchasing. These allow you a deep dive into the health of the condo association or home you are purchasing.
8. Remainder Earnest Money Due
After the attorney review process is completed - normally inside five-seven business days your balance of earnest money is due. You will have two business days to submit the final portion which is five percent of the purchase price less your initial earnest money deposit.
9. Loan Application & Appraisal
If you are obtaining financing, you will need to make a loan application upon receiving the contract. Your lender will let you know the list of financial documents necessary to provide to the lender including a couple-months of bank statements, tax records, pay stubs, etc. Once you feel confident your home purchase is moving forward after the attorney review/inspection period, your lender will have an appraisal done on the property.
10. Clear Mortgage Contingencies “Clear to Close”
If you are obtaining financing, you will have a mortgage contingency of typically 30-45 days to obtain a mortgage commitment. Once your lender has all of your documents, they will send it to underwriting to review. Once underwriting has issued a Clear-to-Close, your loan is complete and the file will be sent to the title company for closing.
11. Final Walk-Through
Before we head to the closing table, we’ll have a final walk-through of your future home. This is our chance to make sure the sellers made any repairs agreed to, all appliances and fixtures negotiated were left behind and that the sellers didn’t accidentally damage the home when moving out.
We will attend your closing together along with your attorney and the seller’s attorney at the office of the seller’s title company. Your attorney will explain each form you need to sign and will review the numbers on the settlement statement. Closings typically take a couple of hours on average. When closing is complete, you’ll receive the keys to your new home!