Wouldn’t it be great if buying real estate were as easy as buying Pennsylvania Avenue, Park Place and Boardwalk in the game of MONOPOLY? Of course, the home buying process is a bit more complicated in real life! Due to historically low housing inventory levels, competition among buyers in the Tampa Bay Region of Florida has gotten very intense! SO, if you’re serious about homeownership, you’d better be ready for the ride! To point you in the right direction, we’ve prepared a road map to help you navigate thru the twists and turns of the home buying process.
As purchasing a home will likely be the largest financial decision of your life, you’ll want to work with a full-time REALTOR who is knowledgeable and experienced in the area in which you are looking for purchase. Ask friends and family members for referrals and interview a few real estate agents before you start looking at properties. Once you’ve found “Your REALTOR”, “stick with them” as they will work hard for you through the entire home buying process!
If you haven’t already decided on which lender to use for your home purchase, “Your REALTOR” should be able to offer a few recommendations of lenders and/or mortgage companies with whom they’ve had good experiences. Once you’ve chosen your lender, and if you are in need of any credit repair, your lender can provide guidance on how best to repair the situation you may be facing.
Based on your income and expenses, your lender will help you determine what price range of homes you should be considering. Be sure to provide all the required documentation to your lender in a timely fashion. Having a current and solid pre-approval letter, in hand, when you’re ready to make an offer on a home adds strength to your offer. This is an important advantage in our current competitive “Seller’s Market”. EXTRA TIP: Don’t make ANY major purchases like a big-screen TV or riding lawn mower until after closing, as this can affect your credit!
Once you know your home-shopping budget, talk to your REALTOR about your ideal home “wants and must-haves”. Is a pool a must-have? Would you prefer a home in a homeowner’s association OR not? Knowing your “wants and must-haves” will help you zero-in on YOUR dream home before another buyer discovers it!
Great News… YOU’VE FOUND YOUR DREAM HOME! Your REALTOR will walk you through the entire process when you’re ready to make an offer! Some of the offer terms your REALTOR will discuss with you will include the following: dollar amount of good-faith deposit, desired closing date, length of inspection period, etc. In our current “Seller’s Market” where multiple offers are not unusual, making a “strong initial offer with minimal contingencies” can help give your offer a better chance of being accepted VS rejected by the seller.
Great News…YOU’RE OFFICIALLY UNDER CONTRACT! Now’s the time to get ALL your inspections done during your agreed-upon inspection period. Also, during this timeframe, be sure to communicate, in writing, any issues that were discovered that are a concern to you. With the guidance of your REALTOR, it may be necessary to open-up negotiations again with the seller to determine whether any repairs will be remedied by the seller OR whether the seller will give you a credit in lieu of any repairs.
Great News… YOUR LENDER HAS THE “CLEAR TO CLOSE”! Your REALTOR and closing company will guide you through the entire closing process. You’ve wired any necessary funds to the closing company. You’ve contacted the utility companies to setup your new accounts. Your final walk-thru is complete and you’re heading to closing. Your lender has already sent their lengthy closing package to the closing company SO plan to sign a ton of documents. Once your lender approves the signed documents, Your Dream Home Keys are Moments Away … CONGRATULATIONS!!
Thinking of BUYING OR SELLING a home in the Spring Hill, Brooksville, Weeki Wachee or the Hernando Beach areas of Hernando County, Florida? If you’re new to the area, be sure to see what Hernando County has to offer you and your family! In the meantime, visit www.GailSellsFloridaHomes.com to explore our state-of-the-art MLS Map Search Feature where BUYERS can SEARCH MLS listings and SELLERS can SEE what their competition is doing!
Until then… it’s all about YOU!