Ready to buy a home? Make a list and check it twice!
Have you been thinking about purchasing a home, and don’t know where to start? We have created a checklist for you to help make your home dreams come true:
Decide what neighborhood you want to live in! Are you living where you want to be? You should plan on staying in your home for at least the next 5-7 years for your investment to start paying off. It is important to chose a neighborhood that will meet your needs in the long term.
Find a REALTOR! After you have met your financial goals, it is time for you to find a great REALTOR. Start by asking friends and family for a referral. You can also check out thinkbluhouse.com, to find an agent that is specialized in the neighborhood you are looking to live in. Once you meet with a real estate agent you will sign a buyers contract with them. This document states that the REALTOR will be representing and working with you during the home buying process.
List your wants and needs. Create a list of your must-haves in a home. Things like the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, travel times, features, etc. Then create a list of things that you want in a home but aren’t complete deal-breakers such as a pool, large backyard, and fireplace. Creating a Pinterest board with all of your favorite home features you can share with your REALTOR when you start looking may help you as well.
Search for homes in your market. Once you figure out where you would like to buy and what type of home you are looking for you can start to assess realistically how much it will cost. Use an online search tool at thinkbluhouse.com to see what homes are for sale in your desired neighborhood(s) and the value of those homes.
Take a good look at your finances. Once you figure out what the homes in your desired neighborhood(s) cost, you can figure the amount of money you will need for a down payment, property taxes, monthly mortgage payments, etc. Be sure to take a look at your credit score to ensure you have everything in order before applying for a home loan.
Write down your financial plan. After you take a look at your finances, determine how much you need to save for a down payment on your desired home and create a timeline to achieve this goal. Make sure to make paying down any current debt you have is a part of this plan.
Get pre-approved for your home loan. Your REALTOR will have a mortgage representative they can refer you to who can assist with financing your new home. First, you will need to get pre-approved so you know exactly how much home you can afford. This will not only allow you to redefine your home search, but also give you a competitive advantage against other buyers when bidding on the same property.
Start Shopping! During this process you will be searching for homes online, visiting open houses, and most importantly the process of going on a good-old-fashioned home tour with your real estate agent. Starting your home search online however will let you search more efficiently, but there is nothing like seeing the home you want and its surroundings in person.
The bidding process. The bidding process will differ in every situation, ultimately you should look to your agent to help you develop the best plan. Depending on the market, there is a possibility of having multiple buyers wanting to purchase the same home, so it is important to have a thought out strategy ahead of time.
Offer acceptance & earnest money. Once a seller accepts your offer to purchase their home you are required to put down a earnest money deposit to show that you are committed to purchasing the home. The earnest money goes towards your down payment and your closing costs at the closing of the sale of your home.
Home Inspection. Most of the time, home sales are considered pending until a home inspection is complete. A home inspection is when an inspector checks the condition of a home. The things they look at include the foundation, windows, roof, electrical, insulation, and heating components of a home. If after a home inspection is complete and there is a need for repairs, you can re-negotiate your purchase with the seller.
Home appraisal. A home appraisal is an important step to getting the financing you need to purchase your new home. It is performed to assess the true value of the home you are buying, which then determines how much a lender is willing to give you to purchase the home. An appraisal is used to protect the banks from getting stuck with a property that is worth less than they have invested, and also protects you from paying too much for a home simply because it was love at first sight.
Purchase your home insurance. A typical homeowner’s insurance policy covers your home, property damage or injury to others, your belongings, and living expenses if you are unable to live in your home temporarily because of a disaster.
Closing! The closing is the final step in purchasing your home. This is where the deed to a property is legally transferred from the seller to the buyer who is taking possession of the home. Simply, this is when you get the keys to your new home and can officially move in.
If you have any additional questions about the home buying process, please contact a REALTOR at Blu House Properties. We are always ready to help answer any questions you may have & assist you in your home buying process.