Purchasing a home is an intimidating event for a lot of people, but with a little up-front planning, it's not all that difficult. I like to furnish buyers with an overview of the entire deal so they know exactly what they can expect. Below are my nine steps to purchasing a home.
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Step 1 – Get ready to buy a home
There are many things you'll want to do before starting your home search. You'll want to create a checklist of items you want to have, get a plan of what neighborhoods and school districts you'd like to live in, and begin planning your budget. Keeping your mortgage payment around a third of your monthly income is a good rule of thumb to adhere to.
Step 2 – Contact a real estate agent in El Paso
This is where I come in. I'd be more than happy to schedule a time to get together with you and communicate with you about your real estate needs and get an idea of your future plans. We'll discuss everything from neighborhoods, schools in the El Paso area, the mortgage industry, to any other economic factors that may affect your buying decision today or in the future.
I'll also help you start the loan process. There are some great mortgage professionals in El Paso, and I partner with a lot of them, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They will help you choose which kind of loan is best for you, as well as help you get approved.
Step 3 – Begin house-hunting
After we meet for the first time, I'll begin looking for homes on the market that are a good fit for you. I'll get a sneak peek of most of the homes and eliminate the bad ones, and then we'll schedule appointments to view the houses when it's convenient for you.
As we tour houses, I'll call attention to good features and bad ones. And I'll ask you what things you like and dislike. It's pretty common for buyers to amend their must-have list as we tour houses and some features become more substantial than others. If such is the case, I'll search the listings another time and narrow it down to the home you've been dreaming about.
Step 4 – Get a feel for the housing market
My understanding of the El Paso market is a valuable benefit in your house search. I'm informed of all the schools and neighborhoods, and I'll let you know some areas are "hot" and require immediate action and the ones that are "cold" and allow for more examination.
When we tour houses, I'll let you know if the seller's list price has room for bargaining or if I believe the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be mindful and be sure to ask plenty of questions. Any real estate agent in El Paso will claim to truly know the home market. If it seems like they don't know everything, contact me at (915) 929-2755 or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I'll be happy to answer your questions. My knowledge of the market will keep you a step ahead through the entire deal.
Step 5 – Find the house you've been looking for
I'm certain we'll find the house of your dreams in the El Paso area. When that happens, I'll meticulously create your purchase offer. The offer will be tailored to suit your needs, including some contingencies. A few examples are acquiring financing, finishing the inspection, and a clean title.
When we submit your offer, you'll need to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit given to a home seller to secure the offer to buy the property. The amount is typically applied to the closing costs. If the offer is accepted by the seller, we should close about 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows sufficient time for your mortgage financing.
Step 6 – Negotiate
Most contracts aren't closed on the beginning offer. It's pretty common to receive a counter offer. Don't let it intimidate you. We'll figure out whether or not to accept the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or refuse the seller's offer and move on.
How aggressively we negotiate the deal depends on the state of the market. We'll also work within your financing budget. And when it's all said and done, we'll put together a contract that works well for you.
Step 7 – Obtain your loan
After we sign the final deal, you'll begin working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. If you're pre-approved, it won't take very long at all. But you'll need to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll care for all the property information your mortgage lender needs to close the loan.
Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) outlining your closing costs from your lender within three days of receiving your application. This estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements order that it has to contain all closing costs and fall within a strict range of accuracy, and I'll analyze the estimate and let you know if it all looks adequate.
Then it's time to close on your house. This should happen at a title company or escrow office and is often a smooth and pleasant event.
Step 9 – Move in
Success! Now you can move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, just call me at (915) 929-2755 or send me an e-mail.
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