Now that the market is springing into action, I want to address the most common questions, and concerns buyers typically have. Efficiency and accuracy are critical! Time is still of the essence in this market, so the more you know going in – the better prepared you will be!
WHAT DOES A REALTOR® DO?
A REALTOR® will educate and inform you of all your options and provide all the information you need to make the best possible decision. We will walk you through every part of the home buying process and represent your best interest throughout the entire transaction. We’ve got your back from beginning to end.
HOW MUCH DO I HAVE TO PAY MY REALTOR®?
As a buyer, you do not pay your REALTOR® anything to help you look for the home you wish to purchase. A REALTOR® can work with a buyer for months without making a dime. In most cases, the seller will pay their REALTOR® a fee when the transaction closes. The seller’s agent then pays the buyer’s agent for bringing the buyer and facilitating the transaction.
WHAT IS THE FIRST STEP OF BUYING A HOME?
Unless you are paying cash, you need a mortgage pre-approval. To know how much house you can afford, you will need to get pre-approved for a loan. A pre-approval is the ONLY first step in the home buying process. An initial consultation with a lender only takes a few minutes, and while it is a hard inquiry on your credit, it’s not as bad as you might think.
WHAT DOES MY CREDIT SCORE NEED TO BE TO QUALIFY FOR A HOME LOAN?
While a higher credit score offers better lending terms, this is an ever-evolving topic because loan requirements are constantly changing. Your lender will be the best source to give you the most accurate answer for today’s lending requirements.
ARE THERE SPECIAL HOME BUYING PROGRAMS?
There are some great loan options and home buying programs that you should research. Your local lender will also know if there are any local programs available. Again, your lender will be the best source for the most accurate answer.
HOW MUCH MONEY WILL BE REQUIRED FOR MY DOWN PAYMENT?
Typically between 3% to 5% of the purchase price is the most common answer, but it depends on your loan type. Other factors that could influence how much you’re required to put down are your credit history, the type of property you’re buying, and whether or not the home is an investment property.
HOW LONG DOES CLOSING ON A NEW HOME TAKE?
The timeline varies based on search criteria, location, and inventory. Once you find a house you love, and the seller accepts your offer, it should take 30-40 days to close if you have a conventional mortgage. Different types of loans may take more than 40 days. If you are buying a foreclosure, figure on a couple of months. Short sale transactions are notoriously slow and could take 2 to 4 months to close.
CAN I BACK OUT OF THE DEAL?
You are legally bound to move forward once you’ve signed the contract and all parties agree upon the terms. However, there will be a due diligence period within the contract. Due diligence is when the buyer has the home inspected, and contingencies get added into the contract for the seller to either accept or decline. If both parties cannot come to an agreement during due diligence, then the buyer has the right to back out of the contract. Your due diligence deposit is non-refundable, but your earnest money will be refunded if contract contingencies cannot be agreed upon and the deal falls through.
WHEN DO I GET THE KEYS?
You should be able to get the key to your new home at closing. In some cases, the lender may need time to fund the loan, but closing should typically only take about an hour. Everything should be communicated and coordinated before closing day.
The key is organization and communication. Give me a call at (830) 305-5248or email me at email@example.com, and I will be happy to answer any other questions you may have about the buying process.