A GUIDE TO BUYING YOUR HOME
It’s All About You
Our real estate business has been built around one guiding principle: It’s all about you.
- Your needs
- Your dreams
- Your concerns
- Your questions
- Your finances
- Your time
- Your life
We will work with you to understand your unique lifestyle, needs, and wishes because buying a home is more than the number of bedrooms or a particular ZIP code. It’s about your life, and that’s important to us.
Our focus is on your complete satisfaction. In fact, we work to get the job done so well you will want to tell your friends and family about us. That’s why so much of our business comes from repeat customers and referrals. Good service speaks for itself. We are looking forward to the opportunity to earn your business and future referrals too!
It’s all about you!
You Get From Us …
- A knowledgeable and professional REALTOR ® who represents you
- Thorough consultation to determine your unique wants and needs in a home
- Advice on making offers based on expert market evaluation, so you don’t “overpay”
- A committed ally who will complete your purchase contract, present your offer, and negotiate on your behalf
- Preparation of all closing documents and guidance through the closing process
- Assistance with any post-closing needs
- The backing of a trusted company, Keller Williams Capital Properties
- Use of our East + Ivy Moving Truck for Free
As part of our service, we will commit to helping you with your home search by:
- Organizing and scheduling homes to view based on your unique specifications
- Touring homes and neighborhoods with you
- Keeping you informed of new homes on the market
- Advising you of other homes that have sold and for how much
- Working with you until we find the home of your dreams
7 Steps to Home-Buying
1. Choose a REALTOR®
Choose the best real estate agent to represent you in finding and purchasing your dream home. It is important you trust your agent as you will be spending frequent time together and they are assisting you with one of the biggest financial commitments in your life. Once you have made your selection, sign a Buyer Agency Agreement to work together.
2. Obtain Financial Pre-Approval
Get pre-approved for a loan before you find the home you want to buy. Benefits include:
- You know your price range, closing costs, and monthly payments upfront
- You only look at homes within your price range
- Your negotiating position with the seller is stronger
- Closing on your new home can happen more quickly
3. View Homes and Find “The One!”
After a thorough understanding of your new home needs, you’ll receive a list of homes that meet your requirements. From, there we will schedule time to tour them.
We will also help you find homes through:
- Online real estate search sites (including our website) – we will make appointments to visit them.
- For Sale or For Sale by Owner (FSBO) signs as you drive through neighborhoods – we will make appointments to visit them.
- Open Houses - accompanied by your East + Ivy Realtor.
- New home developments – accompanied by your East + Ivy Realtor.
4. Make Your Offer
Once you have found your dream home we will research market data to help determine an offer price. We will present a written offer to the seller’s agent, along with your earnest money deposit. There may be some negotiation required as the seller may either accept, reject, or counter your offer. When the seller accepts the offer it becomes a legal contract.
5. Preform Home Inspection and Negotiate Repairs
You will hire a professional home inspector to conduct a thorough inspection of the property and we will negotiate with the seller to complete any necessary repairs.
6. Final Walk Through
Once the sellers have moved out of the property and you are given the clear-to-close from your lender, we will preform your final walkthrough to ensure the property is delivered per the agreed upon condition.
7. Review of Contract and Close!
The closing is the formal process of signing papers, paying fees and closing costs, and receiving the keys to your new home!
Funding Your Home Purchase
Three Factors Determining How Much Can You Afford
- Qualification for a Mortgage
- Down Payment
- Closing Costs
1. Qualification for a Mortgage
Lenders may require that your monthly payment is a percentage of your monthly income. The percentage will depend on the borrower’s credit rating and debt to income ratio. Your monthly mortgage payment to the lender will consist of:
- Principal on the loan
- Interest on the loan
- Property taxes
- Homeowner’s insurance
- Any applicable HOA or condo dues will be factored in for qualification purposes
2. Down Payment
Most home loans today require down payment, between. If you are able to pay more upfront you may be eligible for lower interest rate loans, and shorter loan periods. If you are currently serving, or a Veteran of the US Military, you may qualify for VA Loan options where your down payment could be as little as $0.
3. Closing Costs
Additional fees and costs associated with loan processing and closing are required to be paid at closing, unless you are able to wrap them into your financing. Typically, closing costs amount to between 2 – 3% of the purchase price (not the loan amount.)
Process of Funding
1. Financial Pre-Approval
- Application and interview with a bank or other mortgage loan company
- Buyer provides pertinent documentation, including verification of employment, assets, and income
- Credit report is requested
- Appraisal is scheduled once you go under contract
- Loan package is submitted to underwriter for approval
3. Loan Approval
- Parties are notified of approval
- Loan documents are completed and sent to title
4. Title Company
- Title exam, insurance and title survey conducted
- Borrowers come in for final signatures
- Lender reviews the loan package
- Funds are transferred by wire
Making an Offer
Once you have found the property you want, we will write a purchase agreement. While much of the agreement is standard, there are a several areas that we can negotiate:
- The Price
What you offer on a property depends on a number of factors including its condition, length of time on the market, buyer activity, and the urgency of the seller. While some buyers want to make a low offer just to see if the seller accepts, this often isn’t a smart choice because the seller may be insulted and decide not to negotiate at all.
- The Move-in Date
If you can be flexible on the possession date, the seller may be more apt to choose your offer over others.
- Additional Property
Often, the seller plans on leaving major appliances in the home; however, which items stay or go is often a matter of negotiation.
We will present the offer to the listing agent and/or seller. The seller will then do one of the following:
- Accept the offer
- Reject the offer
- Counter the offer with changes
By far the most common is the counteroffer. In these cases, our experience and negotiating skills become powerful in representing your best interests.
When a counteroffer is presented, you and your East + Ivy Realtor will work together to review each specific area of it, making sure that we move forward with your goals in mind and ensuring that we negotiate the best possible price and terms on your behalf.
Note: Earnest money is likely needed at the time of offer. This is typically 1% -2% of the offer price. This check is made to the Title Company and will ONLY be deposited if the offer is accepted. This amount will be applied to the down payment or your closing cost, as applicable.
Prepare for It
Closing day marks the end of your home-buying process and the beginning of your new life! To make sure your closing goes smoothly, you should bring the following:
- A certified check for closing costs and down payment. Note: Some title companies will require you to wire the funds in lieu of having a check. These instructions will be provided to you closer to settlement.
- Photo IDs
- Social Security numbers
Transfer of title moves ownership of the property from the seller to you. The two events that make this happen are:
- Delivery of the buyer’s funds
This is the check, or wire funds, provided by your lender in the amount of the loan.
- Delivery of the deed
A deed is the document that transfers ownership of real estate. The deed names the seller and buyer, gives a legal description of the property, and contains notarized signatures.
At the end of closing, the deed will be taken and recorded at the county clerk’s office. It will be sent to you after processing.
Frequently Asked Questions
How will we tell you about the newest homes available?
The Multiple Listing Service Website provides up-to-date information for every home on the market. We constantly check the ‘New on Market’ list so we can be on the lookout for our clients.
Will East +Ivy inform me of homes from all real estate companies or only Keller Williams?
We will keep you informed of all homes. We want to help you find your dream home, which means staying on top of every home that’s available on the market.
Can you help me find new construction homes?
Yes, we can work with most builders and get you the information you need to make a decision. On your visits with the builder, your Realtor will accompany you. By using our services with a new construction home purchase, you will receive the services we offer, as well as those provided by the builder, at no additional cost.
How does for sale by owner (FSBO) work?
Homeowners trying to sell their home without agent representation are usually doing so in the hopes of saving the listing agent commission, but most understand they will pay for buyer agent commission. If you see a FSBO and want the advantages of our services, let us contact the owner for you and make an appointment. Most times the homeowner will work with an agent even though their home is not listed, since the agent is introducing a potential buyer to their property.
Can we go back through our property again once an offer is made but before possession?
Usually we can notify the seller and schedule a convenient time to visit the property again. Immediately before the closing, we will schedule a final walk-through and inspection of your new home.
Once my offer is accepted, what should I do?
You will want to schedule your move, pack items, and notify businesses of your address change. We will provide you with a moving checklist to help you remember all the details. We will also give you a good faith estimate and Closing Disclosure statement, which will indicate the amount you will need to bring to closing.
Let’s look for a new home.
The information we just discussed about your wants, needs, and desires will all be taken into account when we choose homes for you to view.
In some cases, our clients find their dream home on the first day. In other cases, it takes more time to find the right home. Rest assured, there is a home out there just right for you. We just have to find it.
To assist you in the home search journey we will organize a list of homes with the following information for each:
- Photos of the home
- The home address
- The current asking price
- The square footage and property taxes
- The number of bedrooms and baths
- The age and lot size
- Unique features and comments
Once we narrow down the list of properties that are of interest, we will:
- Provide you with more detailed information about the home
- Review the county tax records for tax liens, etc.
- Tour the home with you
- Determine how the asking price compares with other homes in the area
- Answer any and all questions you may have