The Process Of Buying Your New Home

Dated: 01/08/2019

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Once you've made the decision to buy  home, it's time to start thinking about what comes next.  Every buyer needs a checklist that will guide them through the process of searching for the perfect home, evaluating their choices and making a purchase.  

1. Learn the Lingo - When you set out to buy a new home, you will need to familiarize yourself with various real estate terms, conduct research on the market calue of homes in the area in which you intend to shop and learn the art of negotiation.  The information will help as you browse homes, talk with Real Estate Agents, and get further into the buying process. 

2. Get a Free Credit Report - Every 12 months, you entitled to request a free copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies - Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian.  You should make this request before you begin looking at homes in order to allow yourself enough time to identify and dispute any inaccuracies in your credit file.  When you approach a lender, you will need to make sure that everything is correct and up to date.  

3. Get Pre-qualified - Pre-qualification is different than pre-approval in that it gives you a possible price range that you can afford, but does not guarantee you the loan.  Pre-qualification is important because it will help you narrow your search to include only homes that you can afford.  Knowing what you can pay for beforehand will save you both time and disappointment in looking at homes that do not fit your budget.

4. Speak with a Real Estate Agent -  Nobody knows the real estate business like a Real Estate Agent, so let them help you find your new home.  Based on your specific requirements, a Real Estate Agent can locate a home that will suit you at a price that's within your budget.  When he/she finds one or more possible candidates, you will be invited to tour the home.  At this point, you should take a camera for the purpose of later reviewing each house with visuals instead of relying solely on memory.

5. Make An Offer - Once you find the perfect home, make an offer that's less than you are actually willing to pay.  This way, the seller can make a counteroffer that would hopefully still be within your budget.  It's important to familiarize yourself with the art of negotiation so that you can learn how to get the best deal without insulting the seller.  Make sure that your offer is contingent upon your being able to obtain the necessary financing.

6. Obtain A Loan - Once you and the seller agree on a purchase price, you may be required to provide an earnest money deposit that will secure the home as you obtain a loan (if applicable).  A lender will require a home inspection and appraisal for the property in connection with your loan application.  In most cases you will know within 24 hours whether or not your application is approved, but the actual closing will not occur until the inspection and appraisal are complete. 

7. Get Moving! - Now that the papers are signed and you have the keys to your new home, it's time to get moving - literally.  Remember to decorate your new home and add all of those special touches that reflect your personality.  After all, a house is only a house until you make it a home!

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