Category: Buy Home.
Tags: Buyer's Consultation, Home Inspection, Lender, New House, VA, Vacation Condos
FIRST & FOREMOST – choose an education-oriented, knowledgeable, competent Agent that you have confidence and trust in. I normally sit down with my clients and spend about an hour having what I call a “Buyer’s Consultation.” During that time we go over all their questions and I lay out for them how a typical purchase time line rolls out. I will try to do that for you here.
1st: You choose your lender and go over your financial situation so the two of you can decide on what amount you’d like to spend, the amount of your down payment and also the amount you will give as your earnest money deposit at the time you make your offer. You will decide the type of loan (i.e., conventional, FHA, or VA). Your lender will give you a pre-approval letter which you will attach to your offer. This will also give us your interest rate. (You must have this pre-approval or your offer will not be considered (at least in our area that’s the norm.)
2nd: You look at properties until you find “THE ONE” that meets your desires/needs (or most of them).
3rd: You make your offer. The contract is up to almost 40 pages now with many different items addressed.
4th: If there is a counter-offer you go back and forth until both sides agree on all issues addressed. When you have a meeting of the minds, and everyone signs off on all the changes, your contract is “ratified.”
5th: The time lines then begin to toll according to the contract. During the contractual period, you will do your inspections (home inspection/radon/well & septic if rural property), etc. If anything is unacceptable in your inspections you will then re-negotiate with the seller regarding what they will/will not repair. You will also get final approval for your loan and order a homeowner’s insurance policy. The appraisal will be ordered by your lender. When it comes in – if it at least matches the price you’ve offered or is higher, then we are happy.
If it is less, then we will go back to the seller. You have three choices if the appraisal comes in low. You can pay the difference in cash (WHO would do that in today’s market???) or you can ask the seller to lower their price to the appraised value which is certainly what I would recommend. If the Seller refuses to reduce the price, you may void the contract. During this time there will also be a title search done to make sure the property has a marketable title. I also recommend that you do a survey to verify the property boundaries. If you do not have a survey done and you ever have a boundary dispute, your title insurance will not cover you.
LAST: After all these things are accomplished, you go to the title company’s office and sign all the documents for closing on your home. In our area, you are given keys either the same day or as soon as the new deed is recorded if it is near a holiday. Most of the time, you are given the keys at closing.