Nothing beats the feeling of waking up to the first day in a new home. Looking around the room you realize, that just a few months ago this was still a dream, but now these walls, doors and windows all belong to you.
However, the process to get to this point can sometimes be intimidating and confusing. As an experienced real estate agent, I am here to guide you through the entire process from selecting the right home, to closing at the right price. I will help you shop for the best rates, terms and can even suggest mortgage lenders.
Before Purchasing a Home
Check Your Credit
Get copies of your credit report. If need be, clean it up. Remember, the higher your credit score, the better your loan interest rate. You should check all the three major credit reporting companies: Experian, Equifax and TransUnion, as each may have slightly different information.
Determine your price range before you consider the areas you would like to live, so you can look at homes only in your budget.
Find a Lender
Most people have to take out a loan to buy a home, and you want to be prepared to make a purchase offer as soon as you find a home you’re interested in. So, you want to make sure that you are approved for a loan before you look at homes. If you need help finding a lender, I can recommend trusted lenders in your area.
The details count when looking for the perfect home. If you have children, you will want to consider the school districts in the area. Do you want more bedrooms or bathrooms? Would you prefer a newer or older home? These are all things to keep in mind when looking for your new home.
Found Your Home?
When you find the home you want to buy, I’m ready to prepare a written offer. Since I’m familiar with market value, I’ll help you arrive at a price that gives your offer the best chance of being accepted.
Once Your Offer is Accepted
After your offer is accepted, you’ll have a grace period to get the house professionally inspected. This is the time to request repairs or submit a counter offer if need be.
The next step is to verify that the terms and conditions on your loan are accurate. Also, we’ll go over your signing papers. My job is to be there with you through every step of the way.
Now that you’ve obtained your home, the next step is moving arrangements. If you plan on hiring a professional mover, schedule accordingly. I can also suggest reputable companies. Don’t forget to submit a change of address form and contact the local utility companies.
Why do I need a real estate agent?
This is a question I hear from people trying to sell their home every day. Studies show that home sellers who use a real estate agent to represent them generally get a better price than those who sell their home themselves. That is because agents stay up to date on critical processes, and can keep your home sale to the letter of the law.
I can help you get your home sold at the best price possible, in the right time frame, by marketing your home locally and online, and by making myself available to interested buyers whenever they call.
Working with a real estate agent also adds objectivity to the inherently emotional transaction that is selling your home.
Before Your Home Is Listed
It’s important to have your home in good showing condition before buyers start going through it. Here are some steps to take:
- Spot Paint
Touch up interior and exterior paint as needed.
- Update Carpet
Install new carpeting and flooring if it appears worn or dated.
- Curb Appeal
Make sure the front is clean and spruced up – curb appeal will create a favorable first impression.
- Trim and Rake
Trim bushes and plants as needed, and make sure the lawn is kept mowed and trimmed. In autumn, rake the leaves; in winter, keep the snow shoveled.
- Extra Cleaning
Keep the interior clean, uncluttered and odor-free. Eliminate evidence of pets.
- Minimize You to Maximize Them
Minimize personal items such as family photos. You want buyers to see themselves living in the home
- Start Packing
Consider putting excess furniture and belongings in storage. Now’s the time to clean out the garage and basement and sell, give away or throw away items you don’t need any more.
- Find Potential Problems Early
Consider having a pre-listing inspection performed. Buyers will be hiring professional inspectors; here’s your chance to address problems in advance.
- Professional Stager
Consider engaging a professional stager to give your home the right emotional appeal.
During the Listing Period
When potential buyers visit your home, either find something to do away from your home for a couple hours, or make yourself as inconspicuous as possible.
Have fresh flowers in the entryway. It makes for a friendly introduction into your home.
If offers are made that don’t match your hoped-for price, don’t reject them offhand. Pay attention to your agent’s advice.
Consider dropping the price if several months go by with few or no offers, but if you and your agent have priced your home properly from the start, this shouldn’t be necessary.
Don’t get discouraged. In buyer’s markets, homes can take time to sell.