Are you purchasing your new home in Clearwater?

Purchasing a home is intimidating for most people. However, with some up-front planning, it isn't all that hard. I like to give buyers an overview of the whole deal so they know exactly what to expect. Below are my nine steps to purchasing a home. Should you have questions regarding this information or if you're ready to get started, simply contact me here or e-mail me at .

Step 1 – Prepare to purchase
Before you begin looking for a home, there are plenty of things you'll want to contemplate. You'll probably want to create an index of features you want, plan for what neighborhoods and school districts you want to live in, and start planning around your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than a third of your net monthly income is a good principle to follow.

Step 2 – Get in touch with a real estate agent in Clearwater
This is where I come in. I'd be more than happy to schedule a time to meet with you and speak with you regarding why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your plans for the future. We'll discuss everything from neighborhoods, schools in the Clearwater area, the mortgage industry, to any other economic factors that could affect your buying decision today or in the future.

I'll also help you get started on your loan. There are some very good mortgage professionals in Clearwater, and I partner with a lot of them, so you'll be in great hands. They'll assist you in choosing which type of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Start looking for a house
Following our first meeting, I'll begin finding available houses on the market that are great for you. I'll research many of the homes and reject the duds, and then we'll book appointments to view the houses whenever it's most convenient for you.

When we tour the homes, I'll show you the positive features, as well as bad ones. I'll also ask you to point out what things you like and dislike. It's widely common for buyers to amend their list of must-haves as we view homes and some features become far more necessary than others. If that happens, I'll go back through the listings another time and narrow it down to the house you've been wishing for.

Step 4 – Understand the housing market
My awareness of the Clearwater housing market is a necessary component in your house search. I am conscious of all the schools and neighborhoods, and I'll communicate which districts are "hot" and call for prompt action and some that are "cool" and allow for careful examination.

As we view homes, I'll make sure to communicate if the list price has room for bargaining or if I believe the home is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be on guard and make sure you ask plenty of questions, as any real estate agent will convince you they know the market. If things don't add up, just call me at or e-mail me at , and I'll be happy to answer any questions you have. My knowledge of the market will keep you a step above the rest through the entire process.

Step 5 – Find the house you've been waiting for
We'll find the house of your dreams in Clearwater, and when we do, I'll carefully create your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be tailored with your needs in mind and the home, including several contingencies, such as getting financing, finishing the home inspection, and a clear title.

Upon presenting your offer, you'll want to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit submitted to a home seller to secure the offer to purchase the property. The amount is usually put towards the cost of closing. If the offer is accepted, we should close on the home within 30 to 60 days after. This allows plenty of time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
A lot of contracts don't close on the first offer. It's very common to receive a counter offer. But don't let it alarm you. We'll figure out whether or not to accept the counter offer, present our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and move on.

The state of the market determines how aggressively we negotiate the contract. In addition, we'll work within your financing budget. And when it's all said and done, we'll create a contract that's best for you.

Step 7 – Obtain a loan
Upon completing the contract, you'll start working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. If you're pre-approved, it shouldn't be a long process at all. But you need to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll sort out all the property information your lender will need to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
Your lender will send you a Loan Estimate (LE) of your closing costs within three days of accepting your application. You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) of closing costs from your lender within three days of getting your application. This estimate is based on the loan amount, and RESPA requirements require that it has to involve all closing costs and be within a close range of accuracy. I'll study the estimate and let you know if everything looks good.

Then we'll close on your home. This will likely occur at a title company or escrow office and will most likely be a smooth and stress-free event.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you need anything, make sure you contact me at or e-mail me at .

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