Owning a home is something that everyone looks forward to at some point in their life. But before you get the keys to your dream home, there are certain steps that you’ll have to follow. We’ve broken down the home buying process into simple, straightforward steps below.
Are you financially ready to take on the responsibilities of buying a home? A loan officer will be able to help you figure out how much home you can afford, but you should also take a look at your personal finances. Depending on what type of mortgage you are getting, you may need a certain percentage for a down payment, and you should also have money put aside for unexpected expenses.
Your loan officer will be able to help you determine what price range you should look in, as well as what type of loan will best fit your needs. Additionally, we are able to help connect you with a real estate agent and get you started on the path to home ownership.
Using financial information such as your income, savings, and investments, your loan officer will be able to prequalify you for your mortgage. Being prequalified lets you know what price range of homes you can start looking at, to avoid shopping for homes that you won’t be able to afford. Later on, you can get preapproved for a mortgage, which involves providing financial documents such as your bank statements an W-2 to your lender in order to verify your finances.
Now that you have an idea of how much you can spend, it’s time to start house shopping. Your real estate agent will be able to help you through this process by finding homes that fit your needs and your budget. This step may be longer for some than others. This will be the place you call home for years, so don’t rush into the decision.
Once you’ve found the property you’d like to buy, it’s time to negotiate a price. Your real estate agent will try to land you the best price possible based off comparable homes that have recently been sold in the area. Once you and the seller have agreed on a price, the home will go into escrow. Escrow is the period of time it takes to finish up the remaining steps int he process.
Most offers are contingent upon a home inspection. During this inspection, the home inspector will look for signs of structural damage or other potential issues. Having this contingency in your contract gives you protection by allowing you to renegotiate or even withdraw your offer without penalty if significant problems are found during the inspection.
If you have decided to buy the home after the inspection, you will want to make sure you insure the home. Homeowners insurance can be invaluable in the event of a catastrophe.
Closing is when you will fill out all of the final paperwork, including your loan documents. The title company will have to record the deed and deed of trust at the court house to finish the process. The loan funds can not be disbursed prior. If you are having another closing that day and funds are needed at another company keep in mind to ask your settlement company if they accept assignment of funds. The title company will guide you through the closing. Once this is completed, you’re ready to move into your new home. Congratulations!