· Step 1: Are You Ready? Do You Know What You Want? Do you need to Sell or Rent a home? Are you planning to move to a new community due to a lifestyle change or is buying an option and not a requirement? Do you have a purchasing timeframe? What kind of property do you want? How much can you afford to spend (never stretch yourself thin)? You may need to pay 2-5% of the loan in closing costs (ask your realtor how to get the seller to pay for your closing costs).
· Step 2: Get a REALTOR. The reason to have someone on your side who advocates for you, and you only, is simple; Real Estate is a complex business and a buyer agent's services are FREE! We suggest interviewing 2-3 realtors and checking their credentials.
· Step 3: Get Loan Pre-approval. Any offer that you submit will require a letter of Pre-approval. Again, check with 2-3 mortgage brokers. Check out our service providers to find some references. Ask them to give you an idea of how much you can afford (never stretch yourself to thin) and what you can expect your monthly payment to be.
· Step 4: Look at Homes. Searching for homes is now easier than ever if you know how to do it. Have your realtor put you into an auto-search program that updates daily to your email. Check out our home search feature and use our auto-search feature!
· Step 5: Choose a Home. Chose a home that makes you can afford, feel comfortable in and one that your realtor has researched.
· Step 6: Prepare to have an Earnest Money Check ready and your pre-approval letter. You will need these items to present an offer. You will also need to think about when you would like to close on the home.
· Step 7: Make an Offer. Have your realtor run a Comparative Market Analysis on the property so that you may come up with a good and reasonable offer price. The dates and deadlines of the contract are important make sure you go through them with your realtor.
· Step 8: Meeting Dates and Deadlines. All the dates and deadlines are important and represent your chance to get out of the contract if any of the conditions are not met without forfeiting your Earnest Money. The most important dates are; Title Deadline, Inspection Deadline, Appraisal Deadline, and Loan Conditions Deadline.
· Step 9: Closing. Make sure that you have a walk-through prior to closing to ensure that all the inspection items have been addressed and the home looks to be in correct condition.
· Step 10: What's Next? Always maintain your home! Some day you may want to sell it to a perspective buyer. It is a good idea to trade up. Use your equity in your home to buy more real estate! Then you will have tenants paying off your loan on multiple properties, and hopefully receiving appreciation and some cash flow.