Buying a home should be fun and exciting. And, it is important to understand what is involved in the process. Hopefully the following pointers will help educate you and create a successful home buying experience:
CHOOSING YOUR AGENT: Your agent will be your guide and should have your best interest and goals as top priority. You will want to have an agent who is experienced and has the expertise in local neighborhoods and current market trends. And, since you will be working together as a team, it is important that you trust and feel comfortable with your agent.
CHOOSING YOUR LENDER: In today’s market it is very important to be pre-approved by a lender before making an offer. If you do not already have a relationship with a lender, ask your agent for a referral. Usually, the lending process is much smoother when you work with a local lender as opposed to Internet lenders. It is always helpful to have your financial affairs in order and certain documents readily available to start the loan process. A good lender will guide you through this step.
FINDING YOUR HOME: Now more than ever, you need the services of a good agent. A qualified agent should be aware and knowledgeable of the ‘Untraditional Sale’, such as: Short Sales and Foreclosures. In addition, your agent should be able to send you personalized MLS (Stands for Multiple Listing Service) listings by email. These listings notify you immediately when the latest listing information of homes matches your criteria. Ask if your agent is a member of the local MLS and will provide this invaluable service to you.
MAKING AN OFFER: Prior to making an offer and establishing an offer price, your agent should provide you with a list of Comparable (CMA- Competitive Market Analysis) Sales in the area. Once you get an acceptance, then you and your agent will be involved with evaluating and obtaining disclosures, reports and inspections, etc on the property. This is a very important process and you will want to make sure you select an agent that is: familiar with the local codes, disclosures and other possible restrictions on the property.
ESCROW: Escrow is a neutral 3rd party to the transaction that collects all the documents and money to complete the transaction. Escrow (Usually opened at a Title Co.) is opened once you have an accepted offer. Your agent is involved with providing certain documents to the Escrow/ Title Company. It is important these document reflect the right information and are accurate.
CLOSE OF ESCROW OR RECORDATION: This last process occurs when the escrow holder has all the pertinent documents recorded with the County and you are now the new owner.
I will be happy to answer any questions or concerns you may have regarding these steps in buying a home. Call or email me.