The single most expensive purchase most people make in their lifetime. When a person moves it is considered one of the top 5 most stressful things they can do. In our legalistic society, buying a home can be complicated and risky with all the forms, contingencies, legal documents and disclosures. To alleviate some of the uncertainty and fear in buying a home here are some tips in sequential order to help you traverse through the process.
According to the National Association of Realtors, 98% of home buyers start their home search online. That’s good. But to get the most accurate information and advice, a potential home buyer should set up an appointment with a Realtor to create a “buying a home” plan. A good agent will discuss your top priorities, goals, objectives and concerns including your time frame. Another topic to discuss is the areas you would like to live in.
Next, you and your agent can talk with a couple of mortgage lenders to determine which would be the best fit. During the lender interview process you can secure documentation (a Good Faith Estimate) to determine your price range and monthly payment. It is important not to skip this step. 25% of all canceled escrows in California were due to buyers not being able to qualify.
In writing an offer, your agent can discuss with you a negotiation strategy that would work best in your current market. Most people prefer to start with a low offer and work to a middle ground with the seller but you may have to submit your best offer first.