While every purchase is unique, below you will find the general process of buying a home. From preparation to closing, we give you the information you need to make the best choices for your needs.
Act as your advisor throughout the entire home buying process.
Help you determine your exact needs.
Show you homes around your schedule.
Help you understand and navigate the current market.
Negotiate the best price and terms for your purchase.
Connect you with the right resources, like lenders, attorneys, inspectors, contractors, etc.
Facilitate your team of resources for a smooth transaction.
Commission typically paid by the seller’s agent, so you are represented at no cost to you!
We will discuss your needs, analyze your financial resources, and establish achievable goals.
Recommend financial institutions where you can shop for the best possible financing and obtain loan pre-approval pertinent to the local real estate market.
Explain conditions, contingencies, customary practices, local laws, regulations, and agency relationships.
Establish the areas where your money will best perform and discuss the nuances of those locations.
Below is what you will need to submit an offer on a property. We will address them before and during the process, but this will help you prepare for when you find the perfect home. We are happy to provide recommendations for lenders, attorneys, inspectors and other vendors that have provided excellent service to past clients. If you have preliminary questions, please do not hesitate to ask!
Lender pre-approval letter or proof of funds – We can recommend the perfect solution for your specific needs.
Legal names, email addresses, and current addresses of purchasers – These will be used for the offer and e-signatures.
Amount of offer and earnest money deposit – The earnest money deposit is held in escrow by the listing broker or attorney and goes toward your purchase at closing.
Deposit check for escrow – This will be a photo for the offer and transferred once the contract is signed by both parties.
Choice of inspections – The standard are home, pest, water, septic, and radon, but each home has its own needs. We have you covered!
Tentative closing date – Closings can vary between 30-90 days depending on needs of both parties, type of transaction, and market conditions.
Choice of attorney – If you don’t have a real estate attorney or are unfamiliar with the area we can match you with a local expert.
Your offer is accepted! Now what? After both you and the seller have signed the purchase agreement we will go through the following steps. There are occasional variances in the process, but this is an outline of the most common type of transaction. *For cash buyers, the lending portion does not apply.
Attorney approval – First the purchase agreement is sent to your and the seller’s attorneys for attorney review. This can take anywhere from 24 hours to a week depending on the attorneys.
Inspections – Once we have attorney approval you can schedule your inspections. Home inspectors perform home, pest, water, and radon inspections. Septic inspections are usually done by septic companies. Water quality and radon lab results take 3 days to a couple of weeks depending on volume.
Order appraisal – After you are satisfied with your inspection results you can order the appraisal with your lender. An appraisal report can take up to two weeks.
Bank Underwriting – Meanwhile, your lender is underwriting your loan. They may ask for additional information throughout the process, which should be delivered promptly to avoid delays. When the underwriting is complete and reviewed your lender will issue a clear to close.
Utilities transferred – Once you have a clear to close you schedule to have the utilities transferred to your name the day before or morning of closing.
Walk-through – We also schedule a walk-through of the property to ensure it is in the same condition as when you offered and that it has been cleaned out as agreed upon. Usually, this is done directly before the closing.
Closing – After the papers are signed giving you ownership of the property you receive the keys to your new home. Time to celebrate!
After you are cleared to close by your lender, a date and time for the closing are scheduled by the attorneys, your agent will schedule the walk-through, and you will arrange the transfer for all utilities. Below is what to expect from your closing.
Closing on a home – Often called a “settlement,” you, the lender, and the sellers simultaneously exchange all documents and funds required to complete the transaction. As a buyer, you will sign a stack of legal documents related to the transfer of property ownership, pay closing costs, fees, and the initial escrow of your homeowner’s insurance and property taxes.
Where does it take place? – If you are getting a mortgage, the closing usually takes place at the office of a settlement company. It can be the title company (the company that insures your ownership of the property) or one of the attorneys’ offices.
Who attends? – In general, attendings include you, your agent, the seller, the seller’s agent, and attorneys for the buyer, seller, and bank.
How do I prepare? – The lender will send you a closing disclosure at least three days before your closing date. This document will include the terms of your loan and the estimated closing costs you owe. You will not know your final numbers until right before closing (the afternoon beforehand, usually) If you owe money at closing, make sure you plan ahead to get a cashier’s check or have a wire transfer done. Personal checks are not accepted for purchase but bring your checkbook in case there are minor adjustments that require you to pay an additional small amount.
What do I need to bring? – On the day of closing make sure you bring the following.
The closing disclosure.
Your cashier’s check or proof of wire transfer.
Your driver’s license or another legal form of ID.
Any documents your lender requires.
Your co-borrower, if applicable.
Your checkbook for minor adjustments in numbers.
What am I signing? – At closing you will sign a lot of documents which vary depending on location and type of home you are buying, but you can expect the following.
A promissory note, which outlines the terms of your loan and promises you will pay back what you are borrowing.
A “Truth in Lending” statement, which details the amount of your loan over its lifetime, plus your interest and annual percentage rates.
A monthly payment letter, which breaks down your monthly mortgage payment by principal, taxes, interest, insurance, etc.
The closing disclosure, which should match the one you received three days ago from your lender.
Title or warranty deed, which transfers ownership of the home.
Proration papers, which dictate how costs such as property taxes and utilities are being prorated for the month of purchase.
Statement of identity for the title company to differentiate you from anyone else with the same or similar name.
Declaration report, which states you have seen all the inspection reports done to the property.
Abstract of title, which includes all the documents related to the title of the property. For older homes, this can be quite thick.
After everything is signed and transferred some of the final documents, including the deed and mortgage or deed of trust, are delivered to the county recorder to be recorded and you are a new home owner!