The buying process
1. Using the Right Buyer's Agent is Crucial
When you are buying a property, your agent will play a significant role in the process. It is vital to have a buyer’s agent who has area knowledge to locate the right property for you. Your agent will need to understand the current market and real estate trends so they can help navigate the buying process quickly and efficiently. They need the skills so you can be confident they will negotiate on your behalf effectively to ensure you find and secure your dream home.
2. Understanding Your Needs and Goals
Real estate purchases happen for many reasons. Identifying your needs along with your real estate must-haves is a crucial step in the buying process.
Why are you buying? What property type are you looking for – single-family, townhouse, or condominium? How many bedrooms do you need? Do you need to sell your current home before purchasing another? Are you moving from out of state? Is your existing home too small? Do you need to be closer to work? Are you expanding your family and prefer a particular school zone? Are you purchasing an income property or a second home? Understanding your purchase motivation will play a prominent role in helping you to find specific properties that meet your needs.
Other key factors that affect your home search and should be considered early in the buying process. What is your timeline for purchasing? When do you need to move in? Would you consider a home that needs renovations or upgrades? Do you require a move-in ready home? These questions should be addressed and help narrow your search to properties that meet your family’s needs.
3. Getting Pre-Qualified is a Must
In today’s market, getting pre-qualified is imperative. It will make your home search easier by ensuring you focus on homes within your budget. Viewing homes out of your comfortable buying power can be disappointing and can take your focus away from the best properties within your reach.
Pre-qualification determines your bottom line. That is the maximum amount you can afford while factoring in your mortgage payment, property taxes, Homeowners Association fees, home insurance, utilities, and monthly living expenses. Understanding this budget right from the start of your search will keep your eyes on the prize and will return affordable results.
4. Finding Your Perfect Home or Property
Now that you and your agent understand your goals, budget, and must-haves, the fun begins! It is time to start searching for your perfect future home! Your Realtor© will use their resources to locate available potential properties that meet your needs. While they are compiling these listings for you, you can use this website or our app to conduct searches for yourself. Both the app and this website allow you to enter your search parameters to pinpoint the best properties for you. Have fun searching! And remember to save your favorite listings so you can compare them with the list your Vivid Realtor© provides.
5. Visit Potential Properties
Once you narrow down your list to your favorite homes, your agent will set up showings for you to see the properties in person. While touring the homes, keep a critical eye and be realistic. Try to analyze the properties while keeping emotions at bay. Ask yourself whether it meets your needs. Does it meet all or most of your requirements? It helps to prioritize your needs and make sure they meet your most important criteria.
6. Make an Offer
So, you have found the perfect property. Yay! Now it is time to make an offer! This is where your agent’s expertise comes in. Using market data, Your agent will provide valuable insight to help you determine a competitive bid for the property. Of course, everyone wants a good deal and not overpay. A good Realtor© will help ensure that your offer is competitive in the current real estate market while getting you the best possible deal.
If your offer is below the listing price, the seller will likely return a counteroffer. At that point, you as the buyer are free to accept the counteroffer, reject it outright, or make another counteroffer.
7. Finalize Mortgage Application
When an offer is accepted, and the contract is executed, the buyer and seller move into the due diligence and escrow phase. The buyer places the deposit into an escrow account to show good faith. All documents and disclosures are completed, reviewed, and evaluated. The buyer will conduct an inspection and appraisal of the property and is expected to proceed with the home purchase if no material issues or defects are found. All contingencies, including financing, are met.
8. Inspection/Due Diligence Period
After your offer is accepted and you have received a fully executed contract, you have entered the due diligence period. Inspection periods vary but give you ample time to complete a home inspection as well as any other inspections you choose to have. The examination will provide you with a good view of the property’s condition and alert you to any areas of concern.
Mortgage lenders will also require a completed appraisal to get an estimated property value to confirm that the loan amount is valid. Lenders will typically not give a loan above the appraisal price, so this step is crucial.
At this time, buyers should shop for property insurance and schedule a property survey if necessary.
Suppose the property is a condo, townhouse, or single-family home located in a community governed by a Homeowner’s Association (HOA). In that case, you will also need to review and accept the HOA documents the seller will provide to you.
9. Complete a Final Walk-Through
When you have received the clear to close from the lender, the closing will be scheduled. First, you will complete a final walk-through. Your agent will join you to evaluate the property before you officially close, and it becomes yours. The walk-through is your last chance to analyze the condition of the home before you take ownership. You must verify that the property has been maintained in the same condition as when you made your purchase offer. You should verify that the seller completed any negotiated repairs or changes and confirm that nothing was damaged during their move-out process. Your final walk-through should be completed as close to the day of closing as possible, usually a day or two before closing.
10. Closing on the Property
You are now at the last step in the purchase process! The seller officially signs the deed at the closing, and ownership is transferred to you. The lender will pay off the loan balance and closing costs. Typical closing costs include but are not limited to title insurance, prorated property taxes, homeowner’s insurance, HOA fees, title insurance, and title search costs.
When the deed is recorded with the county and disbursements are made, you will receive the keys to your new home!
11. Client Referrals
The buying process can be long and challenging, but your Vivid agent will work tirelessly on your behalf. We believe it is essential to earn your trust and confidence throughout the process while making everything as fun and easy for you as possible. If we are successful in doing this, we hope you will refer us to your family and friends. Client referrals are an integral part of our business, and we appreciate our valued clients for the recommendations.