Finding the Right Home
- Getting Ready to Purchasing a Home
- Shopping for a Home
- Making a Selection
Getting Ready to Purchase a Home
You have made that decision to purchase a home. Before we go shopping, I will take you through several steps that will not only streamline the process but also reduce the possibility of your not being able to purchase a home. Our first step is to examine your credit history. For this, I suggest working with one of the mortgage providers listed on my links page. The first step is obtaining pre-approval. Pre-approval is different than pre-qualified. The difference is such, that many sellers will not show homes to potential buyers who have not been pre-approved. This is especially true in the highly competitive Austin area market.
During the pre-approval process, you will be given what amounts to free credit counseling by a mortgage provider in hopes that you will be their service at some time in the future. The provider will tell you your credit score and will give you specific information on how you may best position yourself for the best interest rate possible.
Shopping for a Home
After you have been pre-approved, it is time to go shopping for that perfect home for you. One thing I suggest is to consider looking at homes that are at least 5% below the mortgage amount you are approved for. Remember, you are in a competitive market and that 5% can be a reserve you can use to raise your offer on a home, of the home, receives multiple offers. With the pre-approved figure in mind, let’s go shopping. There are many online public accessible MLS type sites such as Zillow, Home Snap, Redfin, etc. While these will provide you with a good starting point, the information can be somewhat inaccurate. Perhaps a property has been sold, but the selling realtor have not updated the info yet, or as in the case of estimates from some of the above companies, those price estimates may not be correct. With my tools as a realtor, I can access the most recent information as well as numerous documents that are only placed on the Realtor MLS.
I suggest when looking at home, choose no more than four to look at initially. The reason is, you may see that perfect house in that group of four, but if we wait to see four more homes, that home that spoke to you may be off the market by the time we circle back to it. Remember, if a home “speaks to you”, checks off all your boxes, then it may be time to stop looking and make an offer. Of course, if you do not find the perfect home, we should and will keep looking.
Home Buying Process
- Finding the Right Home
- Making an Offer
Buying a home in the competitive Austin market can be difficult and at time frustrating. I help prepare home buyers to enter the buying market by offering helpful information that will streamline the process but more importantly will place you in the best position possible in a competitive market. What most people generally desire is the property of their dreams and the very best price possible.
There are many lenders in the United States. Under my links, I have listed lenders that I know have outstanding references. You may use these lenders as a reference, or you may employ any lender you desire. Make sure you do your homework and know the lender thoroughly.
Making an Offer
I use comparative market value as a starting point in making an offer. Comparative market value is derived from looking at recent sales of similar homes in close proximity to yours. it is important to note that the comp value is only a starting point and it is usually not the final value one should offer.
Closing and Beyond
- Final Paperwork
Now that you have found the perfect home, it is time to make an offer. To make a competitive offer, I look at the values of nearby homes that are similar to your home and determine a “comp value”. The comp value is just a starting point and as we go through the process I detail what other factors you should consider in making a competitive offer for that home.
Once your offer is accepted by the seller, we start a new process that includes going under contract, inspection, and appraisal. These are all necessary steps, but they will give us a fair and unbiased assessment of the property. With this information, we may be in the position to renegotiate a lower price or have added incentives included in the sale by the owner.
During the contract negotiations, your lender will be preparing the loan documents and collect any additional information from you that is necessary. I will walk you through each step of the process so that you are comfortable and well informed. One very, very, very important aspect to remember is once you are pre-approved you should do nothing that will negatively impact your credit. Essentially you should be a freeze on all spending except for that which is absolutely necessary and already known by your lender. Make no major purchases, do not charge large items on your credit cards and do not pull down your savings account.
After you have completed the above steps, it will be time for the “closing” The date of closing is established during the contract negotiation stage and there are closing date strategies that may help better position you for a successful bid on a home. My goal is to give you the best information along with best practices to make you successful. The day of Closing. You are about to cross the finish line. I will be there at closing and my primary goal is to review the final closing statement with you to make sure that terms have not changed, or mistakes have not been made.
Once we verify the final information, signatures are made on forms and you are presented with the keys to your dream home. The process may seem daunting, but my experience will help you understand each and every step of the process.