1. DEFINE YOUR NEEDS
Congratulations on your decision to purchase a new home! Your first step toward buying your new home is to analyze your needs. You want to get a clear picture of exactly what you want your new home to look like and how it should function for you and your family.
You most likely have a mental picture of what you would like your house to look like and what features it should have. Make at least two lists: one should be a list describing your dream home and the other should list the features of the home that are an absolute must-have in order to buy it. It is likely that you will end up blending the two lists into a schedule of prioritized items as you progress through the buying process.
2. LOAN PRE-QUALIFY
You are going to need to know in what price range to look. You need to get pre-qualified for a mortgage .You will need to contact a mortgage company.
Loan prequalification is a simple process. It takes into account very basic information regarding your financial status and gives you an amount for which you may qualify. This can be done strictly on a verbal level or electronically over the Internet. The pre-qualified amount is based solely on the information you provide.
In order to make an offer to buy a home, you must submit a personal check for about 1% of list price ($2,000 for a home selling for $200,000). This money will need to be in a checking account so it doesn't delay the process of making an offer.
3. NEIGHBORHOOD INFORMATION
Now that you have your list of needs and wants and you know how much you can afford to spend, it's time to look at some houses! Not just yet. Step back for a moment and consider the larger picture. People don't just buy a house; they buy the neighborhood the house is in. Think about that...if you found the perfect house but it was in a neighborhood that wasn't to your liking, would you make an offer on it? Most likely the answer would be, "No."
You will most likely want to consider things like how living in the neighborhood will affect your drive time to and from work, what amenities are offered (swimming pool, tennis courts, park, etc.), and, if you have children who are attending school or soon will be, what school district you will be in and how close the schools are. Remember, buy neighborhood first and house second!
4. SEARCH LISTINGS
At this point you will have a good idea of what you can afford and the type of area you will want to live in. Taking that information into consideration, you are ready to embark on your property search. If you don't know much about Colorado Springs, you will most likely want to start your search by finding areas that meet your criteria and then narrowing your search to particular properties in the area.
This website features several powerful search options that provide access to ALL the homes listed for sale in the Colorado Springs area. By registering for the home search, not only will you have complete access to every home listing in the Colorado Springs area, you will also be notified of new listings that match your requirements. You will have your own account that will provide you with access to these home listings - 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
5. MAKING AN OFFER
Now that you have found the home you would like to purchase, it's time to make an offer. Taking into account the recent sales of homes in that neighborhood which are similar in size, quality, conveniences, and amenities, what are you willing to pay for the home? We will consult with you and advise you on how to create an offer that will have the best chance of being accepted.
We will ensure that you have everything down in written form... no verbal agreements. After consulting with you to put your offer in a written contract that meets all the legal requirements according to the Colorado Division of Real Estate, the listing agent will present the seller with a written document detailing what needs to be done by both parties to execute the transaction. The contract should protect the best interests of all parties involved and should be comprehensive. We will also ensure your financial position as the buyer by including any necessary contingencies, which would protect you if a particular requirement was not met. Once the seller accepts it, it may be too late to make any changes.
The contract, though not limited to this list, should include the following:
* A legal description of the property
* The offering price
* The down payment
* Financing arrangements
* A list of fees and who will pay them
* Amount of the deposit
* Inspection rights and possible repair allowances
* The settlement date
* Any relevant contingencies
6. NEGOTIATE THE OFFER
Once your offer is made, you may need to enter some negotiation in order to reach an agreement. Keep in mind that almost everything is negotiable when you are buying a house. This can give you a great deal of leverage in the buying process -- that is, if you have adequate information and you use it in an appropriate manner. We have the market knowledge and negotiating expertise necessary to make sure that your offer is accepted at the best price and terms possible for you.
Some of the things that you may have to negotiate are:
* The price
* Closing costs
* Repairs that need to be done
* Appliances and fixtures
* Occupancy time frame
The key to successful negotiating is keeping in mind that the end result must make both you, the buyer, and the seller happy. Otherwise, negative feelings will persist throughout the remainder of the process and someone may walk away feeling that they were not treated fairly.
7. CLOSING ON A HOME "Closing" refers to the meeting where ownership of the property is legally transferred to the buyer. It is a formal meeting that is usually attended by most parties involved in the buying/selling process. Closing procedures are usually held at the title company's office. The closing officer coordinates the document signing and the collection and disbursement of funds. We will be present at your closing to answer any questions, or help to resolve any last minute or unexpected details that may come up.
In order for the closing to go smoothly, each party involved should bring the necessary documentation and be prepared to pay any related fees (closing costs). Sellers sometimes pay for a portion or all of the closing costs, depending on local market conditions, terms of the purchase contract, and the seller's cash and timing considerations. Any such concessions should be acknowledged in writing. Most lenders will allow a credit from the seller to the buyer for the non-recurring closing costs. However, they usually won't allow a credit that reduces the amount of the buyer's down payment or any of the buyer's recurring costs, such as expenses for fire insurance premiums, PMI, or property taxes.
Congratulations on your new home!
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