Be better prepared to buy your new home.

Buyers Guide

Buying a new home is a big move. It requires a serious amount of time and money. The journey isn’t always easy or intuitive.

The key to getting there is knowing the home buying journey, the current market, and tools at your disposal. Most importantly, creating relationships with experts who can help you get the job done right. That’s where this guide comes in. We’ll show you not only the major steps you’ll take during the home-buying process, but also explain the relationships and experts you’ll need along the way.

When it comes to buying your home, it’s all about trust. You want a Realtor that will listen to your needs and work hard on your behalf. That’s who we are. Select Realty Services LLC strives to be fair and honest in all aspects of our business. Our hard working agents will help you find your perfect home while exceeding your expectations for Realtors. We have the market knowledge and negotiating experience to get the job done well.

Do your homework

Everybody wants to jump right into viewings. Before you step into a foyer, you should identify your list of “musts” and “wants.” This list has so much to decide: price, size, type, neighborhood, school district…

If you’re planning to buy a home with a partner, create your list with them. You need to be on the same page when buying a house. If you aren’t, you’ll risk wasting time viewing homes you don’t both want. You will also be less able to give agents or lenders the information they need to help you.

Find a Great Agent

Your relationship with your real estate agent is the foundation of the home-buying process. He or she is the first expert you should meet on your journey, and the one you’ll rely on most. That’s why it’s important to interview agents and find the agent who’s right for your specific needs.

Choose a Lender

Once you’ve found your agent, ask him or her to recommend mortgage lenders that meet your financial needs. This is another big step, as you’ll be working with your lender closely throughout the home-buying process.

Choose a Loan

Once you’ve decided on a lender or mortgage broker, you’ll work with your loan agent to determine which mortgage is right for you. You’ll provide the lender with details of your employment status, income, and money on-hand to spend on your new home. The loan agent will use that information along with your current credit report to pre-approve you for a loan with a maximum amount. Now you know how much you can spend for your new home!

Start Shopping Online

Once you know what you’re looking for, the next step is to start looking at home listings through on-line property searches. You can find listings right here on this site! You can even save property searches, and receive alerts when new properties become available or existing properties reduce the asking price! Read more about the benefits of our free service here.

View Homes

Now that you have both an agent who knows your housing preferences and budget, and a lender to finance a house within that budget, it’s time to get serious about viewing homes. Your agent will help you determine the quality of listings you find online by yourself, and will also suggest listings you may like based on your search parameters. Then comes the fun part, viewings, which give you the unique opportunity to evaluate properties in-person.

Make an Offer

Once you find the home you want to buy, you’ll work with your agent to craft an offer that not only specifies the price you’re willing to pay but also the proposed settlement date and contingencies — other conditions that must be agreed upon by both parties, such title agent, appraisal, inspections, and closing costs.

Negotiate

Making an offer can feel like an emotional precipice, almost like asking someone out on a date. Do they like me? Am I good enough? Will they say yes? It’s stressful! Some home sellers simply accept the best offer they receive, but many sellers make a counteroffer. If that happens, it’s up to you to decide whether you want your agent to negotiate with the seller or walk away. This is an area where your agent can provide real value by using their expert negotiating skills to haggle on your behalf and nab you the best deal.

Open Escrow

The home you want is now under contract for purchase! Time to pony-up the earnest payment. This money is held in escrow by a third party and moved to a secured trust account for safe-keeping. The next 3 steps happen concurrently.

Title

This is a background check of the property. Time to hire a licensed title agent. He or she researches the property looking for encumbrances. These are problems that could block the sale or become yours if not handled prior to purchase. These include unpaid mortgages, mechanic(construction) liens, municipal liens, home owners association liens or past-due accounts, code violations, special assessments, open or expired permits, unpaid utility fees, and any other entities with legal ownership interests. The title agent will solve these problems to create a “clear title”. They issue a guarantee in the form of title insurance.

Inspections

This is a check of the property’s physical condition. You’ll hire licensed inspector(s) to evaluate the condition of the home and produce detailed report(s). Then you and the lender decide to either accept the current condition, ask the seller to have repairs made, or back out of the contract. This reduces the risk of buying a home that has major issues that would be expensive to correct such as mold, a cracked foundation, or a bad roof.

Appraisal

This is a check of the property’s value. Your lender will have the home appraised by a licensed appraiser to ensure the value is sufficient for the mortgage. Hopefully, the home appraises at the negotiated purchase price. If not, either the seller can agree to lower the price, you can agree to pay the difference, or you can back out of the contract.

Close

The last step of the home-buying process is settlement, or closing. Closing makes the purchase official. The title agent will prepare a settlement statement detailing the purchase. The statement is approved by you, the lender, and the seller. This is when you and the lender pay the remainder to the seller. You sign the final ownership, insurance, and mortgage paperwork. The seller signs to convey the property over to you!

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