Ten Steps for First Time Home Buyers

The Buyer's Road Map

 Ten Steps to Follow on the Road to Home Ownership
1. Hire a Real Estate Professional 
Finding a licensed real estate broker that you can trust, who will guide and support you throughout the home buying process, is the first and one of the most important decision you need to make. 
2. Get Pre-Approved
Choose a lender, fill out a loan application, and provide documentation needed for the loan approval process such as paystubs, bank statements, tax returns, proof of employment, and credit score. 
3. Narrow Your Home Search 
Understanding what you're looking for is a top priority. You'll want to consider the location, price, square footage, style, and features of the property such as number of beds and baths, floor layout, and outdoor space. Utilizing your Agent's high-tech search tools and their connections to sellers saves you time searching online. 
4. Make An Offer
During this step, your Agent will provide you with a pricing and market analysis to make sure your offer is competitive and accepted. Before submitting an offer, you'll determine the amount of the down payment, the amount of financing needed, and the amount of the earnest money deposit. Sometimes a Seller can counter-offer or decline your offer. That is where a Certified Negotiating Expert steps in. They use their training, expertise, and experience to get the deal done. 
5. When Your Offer Is Accepted
At this point, you'll have a ratified contract and the earnest money deposit will be collected. There are many details that will be handled by a closing coordinator, on your behalf, including an inspection, requesting any repairs that might be needed, an appraisal, title insurance, and finalizing mortgage details. 
6. Home Inspection and Repairs
A buyer’s inspection occurs after your contract has been ratified and before the closing of the sale. The inspector will come to the property and perform a visual observation, identifying any health, safety, or mechanical issues, according to state's standards. In general, they will go through the interior and exterior of the property to record any broken, defected, or hazardous conditions in the house or areas surrounding the property. If repairs are needed, your Agent will negotiate for the repairs to be completed or will request a credit from the seller so you can have the repairs done yourself. 
7. Property Appraisal 
An appraisal usually occurs within seven days after the inspection has been completed. The lender will request an appraisal to have the fair market value of your house assessed. According to the National Association of REALTORS,  "The objective of an appraisal is to provide an independent and impartial analysis of real property". 
8. Finalize Closing Paperwork and Mortgage Details
You're almost there! The last few steps of the home buying process will be handled by a combination of professionals which might include the closing coordinator, lender, title company, or real estate lawyer. 
9. Closing Day
This is the big day- you made it! Today you'll sign all the official documents to close on your property. You'll need to bring your identification, everyone who is purchasing the property will need to be present, and you will need to bring a certified check or wire funds for closing costs. Your Agent will be there to answer any questions you may have then hand you the keys to your new property. 
10. Congratulations! You're A Home Owner
Pack your bags and boxes, you're officially a homeowner and can move right in. From all of us at The 20/20 Team, Welcome Home! 

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