With a little planning ahead of time, purchasing a home isn't very confusing, but the event intimidates a lot of people. I like to furnish buyers with an overview of the whole deal so they'll understand exactly what to expect. Here are my nine steps to buying a home.
Step 1 – Prepare to purchase
Prior to starting your home search, there are many things you need to consider. When you start your search, you'll want to put together a check list of features you want to have, plan for what neighborhoods you want to live in, and begin planning your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is no more than 1/3 of your net monthly income is a good rule of thumb to follow.
Step 2 – Talk to a real estate agent
That's where I can help. I'd be happy to arrange a time to meet with you and speak with you regarding your real estate needs and get an idea of your upcoming plans. We'll talk about the mortgage industry, other economic factors that could affect your buying decision today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and schools in the Naples area.
I can also help you get started on your loan. There are some great mortgage professionals in Naples, and I work with a lot of them, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They can help you choose which type of loan is best for you, as well as help you get qualified.
Step 3 – Start your home search
After our initial meeting, I'll start looking for homes on the market that are a good fit for you. I'll preview most of the homes and eliminate the duds, and then we'll schedule appointments to tour the houses when it's most convenient for you.
As we view houses, I'll identify positive features and bad ones. I'll even ask you about things you like and don't like. It's widely common for buyers to update their list of must-haves as we view homes and some things become more essential than others. If that's the case, I'll go back through all the listings once more and trim it down to the home you've been wishing for.
Step 4 – Get a feel for the housing market
My understanding of the Naples market is a necessary benefit in your home search. I am conscious of all the neighborhoods and school districts, and I will communicate certain areas are "hot" and require immediate action and some that are "cool" and allow for more consideration.
When we view homes, I'll be sure to tell you when the asking price has room for bargaining and also when I believe the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, trust your instincts and be sure to ask lots of questions. Every REALTOR® in Naples will claim to know the home market. If it appears they don't know everything, just call me at (239) 594-2780 or e-mail me at Lynn@NaplesBuys.com, and I'd be more than happy to answer any questions you have. My understanding of the market will help you stay a step above the rest throughout the entire process.
Step 5 – Find your dream house
I know we'll find your dream house in Naples. When we do, I'll meticulously create your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be tailored to suit your needs, including some contingencies. A few examples are acquiring financing, carrying out the home inspection, and a clear title.
Upon submitting your purchase offer, you'll want to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit submitted to the home seller to secure an offer to purchase the property, and it's usually put towards the cost of closing. If your offer is accepted, we should close on the home within 30 to 60 days after. This allows ample time for your mortgage financing.
Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
A lot of deals aren't closed on the initial offer, and it's pretty common to receive a counter offer. But don't let this alarm you. We'll talk over whether or not to accept the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and go on.
The state of the market determines how aggressively we negotiate the deal. We'll also work within your financing limits. And at the end of the day, we'll formulate a contract that is best for you.
Step 7 – Secure your loan
Upon finishing the deal, you'll start working with your lender to close the loan. This shouldn't be a long process at all if you're pre-qualified, but you'll want to stay in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll deal with all the property information your lender will need to close the loan.
Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) detailing your closing costs from your lender within three days of receiving your application. This estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements dictate that it has to involve all closing costs and be within a narrow range of accuracy, and I'll analyze the estimate and let you know if everything looks all right.
Then we'll close on your house. This will most likely occur at a title company or escrow office and will most likely be a smooth and easygoing affair.
Step 9 – Move in
You made it! Now you can move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, just contact me at (239) 594-2780 or send me an e-mail.