Part Two: Finding a home and making an offer

In Part One I discussed developing a plan, if you missed that blog it’s probably important to go back and read that first before proceeding. Once you’ve read the whole thing you will understand why.

If you had a Buyers consultation with me we would have gone over astep by step bubble chart of the entire buying process but once we are in the process of viewing homes and making decisions you will have lots and lots of questions it’s okay! Ask away! Ask and ask and ask again. I have done this hundreds of times you have never done it or maybe once or twice. And guess what Real Estate changes daily and the rules change and we add things every day. 10 years ago the contract was 6 pages long now it can be up to 25 pages long depending on which addendums we need for your particular transactions. You’ve hired an expert; it’s my job to know the answers so please just ask and ask twelve times if that is what you need to understand what we are doing. My hope is by the time we get to closing you will be showing me what needs to be done because I trained you so well. =) If I don’t know the answer (it happens once in a while) I certainly will know who to ask to find the answer, so ask away.

So we have started the process of viewing homes, (come on keep up we are viewing homes now) and I will ask you to rate each property and let me know if it is on the list or off the list. After viewing 5 or 6 (that’s about all I do in a day) we will rate each one to determine a #1, #2, #3 etc., that way the next time we go out to see properties we know we have a list of favorites and those new homes we find get compared to the list. We keep this going until only 1 or2 remain on the list and then its decision time. We sit down pull all the comps to those specific properties and determine fair market value and the price we are willing to offer for the homes. You decide based on all that which home you want. (Honestly most times you have already decided before we get to this point).

Once we sit down with pen and paper we will need a preapproval letter to go along with the offer. A copy of the earnest money check also goes with all the paperwork.

Now at this time it is important to point out that your initial upfront costs for purchasing a home are 1) earnest money typical 1% of purchase price. 2) Home inspection, $300-$400 depending on the square footage. Your lender may also require an application and appraisal fee.  Those are your upfront costs.

Sometimes depending on the circumstances I will ask you to write the seller a personal letter it can really help get the offer accepted if we have a private owner. Bank owned or Short sale it’s of little help as the Bank simply looks at the bottom line price we are offering and accepts the highest bidder.

I then take it to the Sellers agent and present the offer we either get it, 1) signed around which means we have mutual acceptance,2) a counteroffer or 3) Rejected. Usually we only get a rejection if there was another higher offer as the case with many Bank owned and Short sale properties or we offered too low and the owner rejects the offer out of hand.  Look for: Part Three Mutual Acceptance and the Pitfalls of Home Inspection in my upcoming blogs.

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