How to Buy a Home

Buying a home in for most individuals the largest financial purchase they will make in a lifetime….so it might be a good idea to know where to start and what to expect.

You may already be shopping for a home online.  Stop wasting time and getting frustrated.  Many of the Home Searches you will find will give you results on homes for sale that are already under contract or sold.  You want a resource that will deliver real time results on what homes are on the market TODAY.  Feel free to use the same MLS search that we as Realtors use day in and day out….Search MLS Homes.  Or save yourself a lot of time and let us search for you and send you the newly listed homes that come on the market that match your criteria.  We know the neighborhoods, we know values, and we know how to help you find your Dream Home….Let us Send Your new Listings.
You Are Going to Need a Good Lender
You really should contact a lender first to get prequalified but if you’re unsure of where to go, ask your Realtor, and take his/her recommendation of lenders. Realtor know from experience which lenders are reputable and responsible.

Find Out How to Finance Your Home

If you are going to use FHA financing to buy a home in Arizona ,you will be required to put down 3.5% of the cost of the home for a down-payment. This can be gifted from a relative. Sometimes in the state of Oklahoma, state bond money will be available to pay your 3.5% down, but it’s not available from all Lenders .

You can ask the Seller to pay some of your closing costs, but they can not assist with your required down payment.  Some other financing options you may qualify for are V.A. financing  or conventional financing.   Discuss all options with your lender to find the program that best suits your needs when buying a home.

How much money do I need to have saved?

Your up-front out-of-pocket expenses will include:

  • Earnest money – typically 1% of sales price (this money is applied towards the down payment and closing costs of the home)
  • Appraisal ($350-$400)
  • Inspections ($400-$500)

Often, your Realtor can make arrangements to pay your inspection costs at closing. You should request a Good Faith Estimate from the lender to see what other expenses you may have.

Lender Pre-Approval

You need to speak to a lender FIRST to know how much home you can afford. No responsible Realtorwill take you house-hunting until you are pre-approved with a Lender. Plus, you don’t want to look at $250,000 homes, only to discover that you can only afford a $200,000 home. Trust me – there’s a huge difference in that $50,000 and you don’t want to begin this adventure with a disappointing start.

Brian was active in the arena of showing us numerous houses that met our criteria. He recommended a lender for us, but when the lender didn’t work out as well as we wanted, he went to work to find someone who could accommodate our needs. Because of his extensive knowledge of available lenders, Brian found another loan source for us that worked out perfectly. Once the loan was approved, we began the search for our dream house in earnest.~ Don and Genie Street

Credit Scores

PLEASE DO NOT check your credit scores on the internet!! These scores are rarely accurate and will only adversely affect your score due to multiple inquiries. Your lender can help you prepare if you provide all required information up front. You will not make it through the lender’s underwriter if you have had an insufficient check in the last two months, regardless of how high your credit score is. Your Lender can guide you and advise you so that you can prepare for a smooth transaction.

Select Your Buyer Representative

Once the Lender tells you it’s time to shop, it’s time to select one  Buyer Representative to help you shop and find your dream home. They can set up custom searches that are much more efficient than the searches you can do online by yourself. They also know what to look for as far as homes being compliant with various lending guidelines. They are experienced negotiators and will walk you through the process.

Educate yourself, surround yourself with caring professionals, and have a great time!  If you follow these simple steps to buying a home, you can have a wonderful experience.

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