Are you contemplating purchasing a new home in St Lucie County or Martin County?
For most people, buying a home can be stressful. However, with a little planning ahead of time, it's not that difficult. So you'll understand exactly what to expect, we like to give our buyers a road map of the entire deal. Below are our nine steps to buying a home.
Step 1 – Get ready to buy
There are plenty of things you'll want to take into account prior to commencing your home search. When you start your search, you'll probably want to make a check list of must-haves, get an idea of what neighborhoods and school districts you'd like to live in and begin planning around your budget. Keeping your mortgage payment less than or close to 30 percent of your monthly income is a good principle to follow.
Step 2 – Speak with a real estate agent that services your desired area
This is where Sawgrass Realty of the Treasure Coast comes in. We can set up a time to meet so we can talk about your real estate needs and get an idea of your future plans. We'll discuss the mortgage and housing industries, other economic factors that may potentially affect your buying decision today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and schools in Port St Lucie, Palm City, Stuart, Hutchinson Island, Jensen Beach, Jupiter and surrounding areas.
In addition, we'll help you begin the loan process. We partner with some of the areas finest mortgage professionals, so you're in great hands. They'll assist you with determining which kind of loan is best for you and help you get approved. Even if you have found a mortgage professional, there's nothing like getting a second opinion.
Step 3 – Start looking for a house
After we get a good idea of what your wants and needs are, we'll start looking for homes on the market that meet your criteria. We'll get a sneak peek of most of the houses and reject the ones that don't seem to fit your needs, and then we'll schedule appointments to view the homes we've selected whenever it's most convenient for you.
When we tour the homes, we'll discuss the features you did and did not like about the homes. It's pretty common for buyers to change their wish list as we tour homes and some features become more essential than others. If such is the case, we'll go back through the listings one more time and narrow it down to the house you've been dreaming about.
Step 4 – Know the housing market
Having an agent that understands the housing market is paramount in your house search. And we assure you we're well acquainted with all the neighborhoods and schools, and we may communicate that some neighborhoods are "hot" which would require prompt action and the rest that are "cold" and allow for more analysis.
When we view homes, we'll make sure to communicate if the seller's asking price has room for bargaining or if we believe the home is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be careful and make sure you ask lots of questions, as every REALTOR® will claim to comprehend the market. If you're working with another agency and things don't add up, just call us at (772) 340-6116 and we'd be more than happy to answer your questions. Our understanding of the market will help you stay a step above the rest throughout your entire transaction.
Step 5 – Find the home you've been waiting for
We're confident we'll find the home that matches your criteria, the home you've been looking for! When we do, we'll meticulously create your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be tailored exactly to your needs, including many contingencies. A few examples are getting financing, carrying out the inspection, and a clear title.
Upon sending in your offer, most likely you'll need to present "earnest money." This is a deposit put into escrow to secure an offer to buy the property, and it's usually put towards the closing costs. If the seller accepts the offer, we should close about 30 to 60 days afterward. This typically allows enough time for your mortgage financing.
Step 6 – Negotiate
A lot of offers aren't accepted with the initial offer – it's pretty common to receive a counter offer. But don't let it intimidate you. We'll talk over whether or not to accept the counter offer, present our own counter offer, or refuse the seller's offer all together and move on.
Market circumstances determine how aggressively we negotiate the contract. We'll also work within your financing limits. And when it's all said and done, we'll compose a deal that's best for you.
Step 7 – Secure a loan
Once we have an accepted contract, you'll start working with your lender to close the loan. If you're already pre-approved, this shouldn't be a long process at all. However, you'll want to stay in close contact with your lender. And we'll take care of all the property information your mortgage lender will need to close the loan.
Step 8 – Close the deal
Your lender will provide you with a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) outlining closing costs within three days of receiving your application. The estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements order that it has to include all closing costs and fall within a close range of accuracy, and we'll help you review the estimate and let you know if it all looks adequate.
Then we'll close on your house. This should occur at a title company or escrow office and will likely be a smooth and peaceful occurrence.
Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything, make sure you call us at (772) 340-6116.