How To Buy Your New Home

Posted by dagmar | |

HOW TO FIND AND BUY YOUR NEW HOME

  1. It’s much better to OWN your own home than to rent.  Here are some important steps to take. 
  2. Get a copy of your credit report and clean up your credit record as much as possible.
    A lender can be a huge help in this.
  3. Contact a Lender or your Bank and ask to speak  to a loan officer, tell them you want
    to buy a house, fill out an application, and get what’s called a Pre-Qualification Letter.  There
    may be a fee called the application fee of $35-$45.
  4. Find a Realtor (get referrals from your colleagues or friends). The seller pays the commission
    to your Realtor, so it costs you nothing to have a Realtor to represent you. Your realtor serves
    you by letting you know what houses are available that meet your needs (they have access to
    the FMLS or MLS database) and by answering your questions about the process. Having a Realtor
    to represent you should also help you get the best price since they are professionals trained to
    handle the negotiation process for you.
  5. Share with your Realtor what part(s) of town you want to live in, what kind of
    house you want, and how much you have been prequalified for.  
    Your Realtor
    will give you a list of houses that match your criteria. They can send it to you via e-mail or
    meet with you at their office and go through all of them.  After you choose the homes you like,
    they will take you to look at them.
  6. When you find a home you really like, ask your Realtor to get the Disclosure
    from the seller.
     The Seller’s Disclosure identifies if there are any problems with the home
    that the seller knows about, and which the seller must disclose to buyers by law.
  7. If the Seller’s Disclosure is to your satisfaction, your Realtor can pull up all
    the comparables of the neighborhood and assist you with how much you
    should offer.
    Your Realtor will know if the home is priced correctly based on the comparables.
  8. You’ll make the offer by signing a contract and you will have to put down $1,000
    (or up to 5% of the purchase price).
    If the seller accepts your offer then they’ll sign too
    and you will be “Under Contract”. At this point you’re generally obligated to buy the house
    and the seller is generally obligated to sell, contingent on your home inspection and your
    loan approval (Make sure your Realtor adds proper contingencies into the contract to protect
    you, i.e. appraisal, etc.) 
  9. Have the house professionally inspected. You generally have to pay this yourself, at
    the time, and it will cost approximately $350 – $450. If the inspection turns up problems
    not listed on the disclosure which will cost a lot to fix, try to get the seller to lower the price
    or repair the problems before closing or walk away from the transaction if you cannot reach
    an agreement.
  10. The lender will have the home appraised to make sure it’s worth what you’re
    paying for it.
    (They don’t want to loan you $250,000 to buy a house that’s worth only
    $225,000.) You might have to pay this up front, otherwise it will be added to your closing
    costs. Besides paying for it up front if that’s required, you’re not involved in this step of the
    process.
  11. Find an insurance agent (ask friends for referrals) and get a quote. You can
    certainly price-shop 2-3 different companies if you like. You can also contact the agent
    with whom you have your car insurance. Pick one of the insurance companies and tell
    them you want the insurance. The cost will be added to your closing costs, so you don’t
    have to pay this separately.
  12. Closing. You go to the attorney’s office that’s handling the closing (a title company or
    an attorney, usually selected by the lender or the seller), to sign all the paperwork. You’ll 
    need the balance of your down payment and closing costs (amount that was quoted to you
    by your lender on the “Good Faith Estimate” wired over to the closing attorney. You don’t
    need to get a check for the mortgage loan; the bank will wire that directly to the office handling
    the closing. You will also need to bring a picture ID and a copy of your home insurance policy
    if it has not yet been sent over to your lender.  Prepare to spend up to an hour at the closing. 
  13. Moving & Utilities – you should have already contacted your mover to arrange the move
    and switched over your utilities before closing to make sure you have heat and lights at the house.
  14. ENJOY your new home! 

 HVACAtlanta2 How To Buy Your New Home

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