Buying real estate can be one of the most important decisions of a lifetime. You may ask yourself, "How do I start the process?" That's where we can help.
Buying real estate can be very overwhelming at times. It helps to have a professional assist with finding the right home and to be at your side through the process.
Your buyers agent will be looking out for you and working closely with you to find the right property. Make sure it is someone you can communicate well with and feel you can trust.
Informing your agent of what type of property you are in the market is the first step in finding the right property for you.
Mortgage and real estate terms can be confusing to some. Here are a few common terms to help navigate you through the process during your search for your new home.
Closing day is finally here. What you need to know to make it as smooth as possible and finalize the deal.
Buying real estate is one of the most important decisions of a lifetime. Many people are making choices on buying a home for their family, buying investment property such as rentals or foreclosures, or looking for a business and commercial opportunity. We realize here at Cubic Realty how big of a decision this can be and are here to offer you free information and representation as a buyers agent to help with your purchase.
You may ask yourself “How do I start the process of purchasing a home?”
That’s where we can help.
There are many resources available to find real estate for sale. If you are not sure where to start let us help with the search. With access to three multiple listing agencies we can search all the surrounding counties to help you find the right home for you. Searching in local papers , the internet and other free publications can also help locate the property you are searching. Don’t let the process be overwhelming, let us help you which each step.
Keep I mind that even though we are located in a small town we service a large area. Once you have chosen real estate agent to assist you in your transaction discuss with them the criteria or interests you have in property so that they can help find what is suitable to your needs and budget. Below are some helpful questions to prepare for your purchase.
1. What size of home is suitable to fit my family?
2. What are my family’s needs?
3. What about schools and employment opportunities?
4. How much land is suitable to my needs?
5. How much will my budget allow?
6. Will I need a home with no repairs?
7. What area with fit my lifestyle?
8. Am I buying for long term or short term investment?
Providing information to your agent about your budget and financial situation will help establish a price range that you are comfortable with. Once this is established and the criteria that suits your needs has been discussed your agent can begin the search for your new home or real estate investment.
Once you have decided if you are ready to buy the next step is deciding if you should use an agent or go at it alone? Our advice, use an agent of course.
Using a real estate professional to help you in the process of purchasing a home is no different than using a doctor for an operation. You wouldn't go at that alone, would you? Yes, we know that purchasing a home is not a life or death situation but you still need someone that has the experience and knowledge to assist you in the process. Experience can save you time in searching and help you avoid costly mistakes by ensuring that you get the best deal possible.
The MLS is a listing site that most real estate professionals use. This allows Realtors to see everything their colleges had put on the market. Sure everyone has access to the internet these days and everything can be found on the internet; but the MLS allows a Realtor to track new listings and even listings that are not available but will be coming available soon. It also allows your agent to provide you with an up-to-date market analysis on properties you are interested.
It helps to have someone to negotiate on your behalf. There may be other buyers interested in the same home and things can get very competitive. You may be up against all-cash offers or even get into bidding wars. It helps to have someone on your side looking after you best interest to ensure that you are getting the best deal. Negotiations are not only about price. There are inspection times, repairs, contingencies and closing cost that can be determined during negotiations and all of these things can make or break a deal.
Having someone in your corner that is familiar with the neighborhood and area is always beneficial. Being connected to others in the community can help save time when you are shopping for an inspector, builder or mortgage broker. This doesn't mean that your agent will choose everyone for you. We will provide you with options so that you have a choice and are not bullied into making a decision you may regret later. Having a Realtor that's connected can not only help you get to know your community but to become part of your new community. Before you know it, your right at home.
A Realtor adheres to a strict code of ethics. Not every real estate agent is a Realtor. Realtors are held to a higher standard and must follow the guidelines and rules set by the National Association of Realtors. Realtors are always looking out for the best interest of their clients. A Realtor has an obligation to be honest and truthful and will never try to steer you in a direction for personal benefit. They will provide you with facts verses personal opinion, options instead of limitations and will preserve confidential information provided by their clients in accordance to state law.
Not only can a Realtor help you negotiate the best deal using their knowledge of the market; but they can also save you time by doing the legwork for you which in turn saves you money. No more countless hours driving through neighborhoods looking for For Sale By Owners or taking time out of your day to look through thousands of homes on the internet. Let your Realtor narrow the search and send you only the homes that fit the criteria you have provided. So instead of wasting your gas driving around to countless open houses, you can spend your time doing something you love and only look at homes that truly are a good fit.
Selecting an agent can be a difficult decision. After all everyone has different traits they may find acceptable or agreeable in a person. Choose someone who fits your personality and that you find easy to work with and communicate with because communication is a big deal when you are trusting someone to help you find a home.
Make sure this person upholds their promise to be honest and truthful and is genuinely concerned with the guidelines you have set for your purchase.
When choosing an agent you may need to ask yourself?
1. Does this person understand my needs?
2. Is this someone I can have confidence in?
3. How well does this person know the market?
4. Are they resourceful?
5. Do they know the area?
6. Do I need an agent with designations?
7. Are they willing to work for me?
A real estate professional is someone you should be able to trust and depend on to answer the questions you have about your purchase. They should know the market or have the resources to research the market in the area you are interested in. It should be someone you have confidence in and has the capability to communicate with you, other agents, mortgage brokers and attorneys during the transaction.
At Cubic Realty we stay with you the entire process. From finding the right home ,negotiating the contract, assisting you in finding a home inspector, mortgage broker, and attorney, to closing on your real estate purchase. Our service doesn’t stop at the closing table , we feel it is very important to continue a relationship with our clients by continuing communication by direct mail to make sure you are satisfied with our services. We want you to feel confident that once you have built a relationship with one of our agents you can always depend on them to help service your real estate needs with loyalty, honesty, and integrity.
After selecting an agent you can trust; provide your agent with some basic criteria on what type of property you are interested in.
Let your agent know what your intentions are for the property you plan to purchase. It will help eliminate looking at properties that will not benefit your needs or work for your purpose.
If you are looking for investment properties, make sure to be specific if you are planning for a long term investment such as rental properties or short term investment like a fix and flip.
Rental properties are a great investment for long term, however depending on the initial investment it could be a long time before seeing a profit; hence the type "long-term" investment.
Fix and flips are properties that may be distressed or on the verge of foreclosure. If you can purchase a property at a discounted rate and then renovate at a reasonable cost fairly quickly you can stand to make an excellent profit. It will depend on how quickly you can get it on the market and pricing it accordingly to sell quickly. Over pricing can lead into stale listings that tend to sit and become unappealing to buyers. A good agent can help keep you up to date on the values until your fix and flip is ready for the public.
If you are purchasing a property to be a forever home for you or your family then you want to make sure you have all the space you need for your family to grow. Maybe you would like to have nice big yard for children to play or a field for horses. These are just a couple of things to think about and your agent can assist with those and much more to make sure you find a home that you and your family are satisfied with.
Location - Where would you like to live? Some questions to consider are:
Type and Style - What kind of a home is for you?
Size and floor plan - How much space do you need?
Amenities - What are some of the extra features you would like to have?
There are many features that you can look for in a home and all of these can help narrow the search for your agent. Sometimes too many specifics can lead to no search results. If your list of "have to haves" cannot be found on the market there is always the option to build your own dream home just the way you want it.
Sometimes are wants over exceed our budget. If this is the case the best solution is to make a list of all the things you have to have in a home and list of things you would like to have.
Only you can decide what is a need and what is a want. Each individual can live without certain things and can't live without others. Letting your agent know what these are can assist a great deal in finding the home for you and your family.
An affordable price range is not only the price that meets within your budget but one that you are comfortable with. Take in consideration the other things you enjoy doing and make sure to budget those in as expenses when getting a home mortgage.
When getting ready to purchase a home and discussing your needs with an agent you may here terms that you may not understand or know what they can do for you. Below is a list of terms you may hear and can help you during the process of your purchase.
MLS stands for Multiple Listing Services. There may be several of these available in the area where you choose your agent. This is a service that Real Estate Professionals join to list and search for homes for sale and other property. It is an organization that provides a service to it’s members to provide information on properties that the members have for sell. It is not available to the general public.
A report provided by Real Estate Professionals to their clients, compiled of properties similar to a property of interest. The report consist of homes for sale or have recently sold. This gives the client an idea of what the property should sell for or how much they should pay for a property. A CMA is not an appraisal. If there are no comparable properties similar to the clients an appraisal may be another option.
Dual agency is a term used when a Real Estate Agent is representing both buyer and seller. This happens when a buyer becomes interested in a property that is listed with the agents firm. For more information on dual agency please ask yourbuyers agent to provide you with the Working With Real Estate Agents Brochure.
Contingency is a provision in an agreement that requires a condition to be met before the contract can become legally binding. Some examples are home inspection, appraisal and loan contingency.
Proof of funds. In today’s market seller’s sometimes require a proof of funds or pre-qualification letter from your lender or bank. This gives them the reassurance that you are serious about purchasing a home and that you have taken the steps necessary to get qualified to purchase.
Money that is given in good faith when an offer is accepted and goes under contract. This money is held in an escrow or trust account with a real estate firm or with an attorney until the property closes. The earnest money is credited to the purchase of the home at closing unless otherwise noted in the contract. It is typically a small percentage of the purchase price and can vary upon market conditions, type of real estate and other factors.
Due Diligence is the buyer’s opportunity to investigate the property and transaction described in the Offer to Purchase form within a period of time agreed to by the seller and buyer. The period of time is negotiable but starts on the effective date of the contract. A Due Diligence Fee is commonly requested by most sellers and is paid directly to the seller. It will be credited toward the purchase if the buyer chooses to purchase but will not be returned if the buyer chooses not to purchase.
Terms a buyer may hear when discussing a mortgage for the purchase of a new home. Knowing some of the common mortgage terms and their meanings can better prepare you in making the best choices for your finances and your future.
The distribution of a mortgage payment to the loan balance and interest. Earlier payments mostly cover interest. Over time the loan gets smaller so the interest is less.
Ways to Pay Less Interest.
This is the interest plus fees and any other one time cost associated with the loan. Different lenders have different rates and costs so knowing the APR can help you decide which lender truly has the lowest rate.
The amount of money you will need to close the mortgage deal. These cost can include title insurance, escrow fees, lender charges, recording fees and other fees associated with the home loan.
Lender charges that include the cost of processing your mortgage application, underwriting and funding the loan. Make sure to compare these when choosing a lender. Origination fees are normally figured on a percentage of the loan amount.
Insurance that protects the lender in case of default. Lenders typically require borrowers to carry private mortgage insurance or PMI if the down payment is less than 20%. Government loans normally require PMI regardless of the loan to value. For more information on home mortgage insurance contact your financial advisor.
Two types of title insurance are lender and owner. Both protect from claims against the title that predate the purchase of the property. The difference is one protects the lender and the other protects the owner. The coverage is normally identical and usually includes the following:
This is the review of the loan to see if it should be approved. Underwriting looks at your credit history, income, assets, liabilities, appraisal of the home as well as other factors that can affect your debt to income ratio. If your loan is denied, ask why. A lender must give you a written explanation if you request one.
Below are some of the items to address prior to closing. Additional items may also be required so it is a good idea to discuss these things with your real estate agent.
It is important to have a checklist of items that need to be completed before closing day to ensure everything goes smoothly and there are no delays. Having information about your community and utility companies can be helpful. Contact an agent to find out more.
Sign up for more information on buying, selling and owning.