First stop – Loan: I have provided a list of great local lenders to work with and get “pre-approved” for a loan. Ask the lender to provide in writing the terms of the loan and monthly payment, which includes your mortgage, taxes and insurance to determine the maximum purchase price that you are comfortable with. Be sure to ask for an estimate of closing costs that you will need to set aside for later. Determine the amount of funds you have available or down payment and discuss various loan programs with the lender.
Cash Buyers: You should consult with your banker or financial advisor as to availability of funds and time frames required to place money in escrow.
Next Stop – Wish list: Now that you have a purchase price to work with, it is time to make a wish list for your new home. The next step is to take your wish list and break it down to your “needs” vs. your “wants.” The needs are the non- negotiable items such as maximum price range, minimum bedrooms, bathrooms, neighborhoods, etc. All other items on your wish list will be categorized as “wants.” The last step is to prioritize your wants. This is a working list – by no means is this list final. Our goal is to find a home that fulfills 100% of your needs and meets as many of your wants as possible.
Next Stop – Real Scout: We will set up an automated search that will send you daily emails from Real Scout with any properties that meet your criteria. If a property catches your interest or you want to view it, all you need to do is click a button and I will receive a message and call you to set up an appointment. You will also receive a username and log-in, so that you can browse the properties and choose your favorites at your convenience 24/7.
Other Sources: We will send you email updates, but it is important for you to check for open house ads in the newspapers and websites. During your day to day driving, if you pass by a “for sale” sign, call me with the address & brokerage name, and I will research it for you. It may be pending or in a different price range, but we are happy to do the research for you and see if it might be something you want to view.
Open Houses: Feel free to stop by any open houses that look interesting. You can let the host know that you are a client of mine. If you find something interesting, let me know. A call or a text message is the best way to reach me.
Drive by the listings: If you view a listing that we sent you via Real Scout.com or another online source that looks interesting, feel free to drive by the property and familiarize yourself with the exterior and the neighborhood. Often times you can rule in or out certain properties just by looking at the location, neighborhoods, exterior or type of land (severely sloped, shaded, etc).
Next Stop – Showings: Once you have found the properties that you are interested in seeing the interiors of, either by viewing the profiles we’ve sent you on the computer or by driving by, let us know the MLS numbers or the addresses and we will research showing instructions and contact you to set up a showing appointment.
Golden Questions: I will ask you, “Can you imagine yourself living here? If yes, is it in your price range? Does it meet your needs? Does it meet enough of your wants? If yes to all, are you ready to make an offer?”
Getting Close – Make an Offer: Once you have decided upon the home you would like to purchase, I will pull a list of comparable properties that have sold recently in the neighborhood to help determine the offer price. Together, we will also discuss negotiation strategies and terms to put in your offer.
Good Faith Deposit: Please see my guide to the purchase and sale agreement and I will discuss the key terms such as Offer Price, Amount of Down Payment, Close of Escrow (COE), Time Frames for all Contingencies (Physical Contingency, Appraisal Contingency, and Loan Contingency), Closing Costs, and Personal Property such as appliances, etc.
Review and Sign the Offer: This can be done in person or over the phone and signed through electronic signatures as well. (DocuSign)
Seller Response: Seller accepts/counters/rejects your offer.
Almost There – Escrow: Once your offer is accepted – Congratulations, you are in escrow!
Good Faith Deposit: This can be done in person with a check or through wire transfer from your bank, though your bank may charge a fee.
Loan approval/Appraisal: Your lender will begin working on your loan. They will order an appraisal and request additional documents as needed for approval.
Inspections: We will advise you on available inspections and set up the inspections you would like. Based on your inspections, we would either remove your physical contingency and move forward with the sale, negotiate with the seller or cancel the contract.
Loan and Physical condition: once satisfied, we will remove all contingencies.
LAST STOP – Closing: Your lender will order loan/escrow documents for you to sign. Your escrow coordinator will arrange for you to sign and bring the remaining balance of your down payment to deposit in escrow. After you sign the loan documents, your lender will fund the loan. The following day the sale will be recorded at the county. Once recorded, we have the pleasure of delivering the KEY to YOUR new home!