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Buying a New Home

Buying a home is an important step in anyone’s life. Be sure to evaluate every feature you would want when deciding on a home and think about the right location for you to build your future. Let us know if we can help you find your new dream home. Use the search below to get the ball rolling.

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Home Buying Resources

Buying a home is an exciting but often overwhelming experience, particularly if you are buying your first home. As your REALTOR®, we can help you through the home buying process and assure that you find the right home for you, at the right price for you.

Every homebuyer has a number of concerns, all of which we can help you with:

Setting a Time Frame
There are a lot of variables in the home-buying process, which means the time it takes to find and buy your new home varies too. A typical home search process may take three to four months, including the mortgage approval process, comparing and evaluating properties, making an offer and the closing process. The loan process typically takes 30-45 days.

The Lending Process
Perhaps one of the most intimidating aspects of buying a home is the mortgage approval process. We’ll be here to help guide you through this, but there are many ways you can prepare early to make the process smoother. Start by making sure your budget is under control–make a list of all your monthly expenses, compare it with your income, and see if adjustments need to be made. You should also try to pay off small credit card balances. Start gathering documents you may need, such as W-2 forms, income tax returns for the past few years, pay stubs, records of child support or alimony, bank statements for the past several months, and your credit report. Also, be sure to allow for closing costs. Getting several offers will allow you to compare loans and get the best deal.

Determining How Much You Can Afford
A general guideline to consider is that most buyers purchase a home that costs about one and a half to two and half times their current annual income. For example, someone earning $50,000 a year might purchase a home for $75,000 to $125,000. Mortgage payments should be about 26-28 percent of your gross monthly income. Existing debt is also considered in the mortgage process, and total debt payments (car payments, credit cards, student loans, etc.) should not exceed 40 percent of your gross monthly income.

Finding a Home That Meets Your Needs and Wants
Before you start looking at properties, make a list of “must-have” features along with optional features you’d like to have. “Must-have” features may include the number of bedrooms and bathrooms you’ll need to accommodate your family, location (consider commute to work, which schools your children will attend, etc.), lot size and special needs (handicapped access, etc.). Optional features may include the architectural styling, bay windows, landscaping, etc. Having a clear idea of what you want in a home will help your REALTOR® find the perfect property for you.

Educating yourself about the home-buying process is key to getting a home you love and can afford. As your REALTOR®, we are here to answer any questions you might have and guide you through this process.

There is a lot to consider when buying your new or next home.  You want to make sure that you get the BEST house for YOU. Choosing the right home, the right neighborhood, the perfect layout  – it can become overwhelming.  It doesn’t have to be if you journal your thoughts and think about what the most important factors you want in your new home are.

In your journal, include a list of “needs vs. wants” in a new home. This doesn’t mean you can’t have what you want in your home, but rather that you have a priority list of the most important features.  You may not be able to obtain all the “want” items on your list, within your budget. You may have to compromise on a few items to stay in line with your budget.  Here is a review of “needs vs. wants:”

WANTS

  • Specific carpeting, paint, exterior color
  • Pool
  • Jacuzzi
  • Hardwood floors, tile, carpet
  • Bay windows
  • Built-in entertainment center
  • Brass lighting fixtures
  • Skylights
  • A pretty view

NEEDS

  • Adequate square footage for comfortable living.
  • Sufficient bedrooms for your family
  • Sufficient bathrooms
  • Comfortable eat-in kitchen
  • Backyard for children’s or pet’s play area
  • Easy access to school

When it comes to the loan process, there are several steps that one must go through. By making yourself familiar with it, you will better understand what is required of you and how you need to prepare. After all, the more knowledgeable you become the more comfortable and in control you’ll feel.

1. Organize Your Documents

In order to obtain a mortgage, your lender will require certain documentation from you to make sure that you will have the ability to repay the loan you take out. Such documentation includes proof of employment, credit history, tax returns, pay stubs, bank statements, divorce and child support statements if applicable, and any other information that the lending company feels might be necessary.

2. Qualification

Before you apply for a loan, getting qualified will help you establish how much you can borrow. When purchasing a home, there are two options one may choose from to qualify for a loan. The first option, pre-qualification, is a quick process that usually happens in a matter of minutes. While pre-qualification is helpful, your other option – pre-approval – is more beneficial and gives you better leverage when negotiating with the seller. Getting pre-approved also lets you focus on homes within your price range instead of wasting time looking at homes that you won’t be able to afford. Finally, when it comes time to close, the process will go rather quickly since your loan has already been approved.

3. Find the Right Loan Program

While searching for the right loan program, there are many things to take into consideration. For example, you might want to think about how long you plan on keeping the loan. The length of your residence will determine the type of loan you want to get (i.e. adjustable or fixed). To figure out which loan program is the best, one will need to compare different programs and everything that each one involves such as rates, fees and points. The whole process can be tedious and difficult at times, which is why a qualified loan officer can help you make the right decision.

4. Obtain Loan Approval

The process of obtaining loan approval involves the following steps:

  • Review of loan application (Be sure to fill it out completely).
  • Verification of credit history, employment history, assets such as bank accounts and mutual funds, property value and any additional information that the lender might require.

There are also a few things that you can do to improve your chances of getting the loan approved.

  • For any requests of additional documents and information, respond promptly.
  • Do not make any major purchases such as a car or new furniture until the loan is closed. Increasing your debt can have the opposite affect on your application.
  • Make sure you will be in town for the closing date. If you cannot be there for the closing of the loan, you can carry out a power of attorney to authorize someone to sign on your behalf.

5. Close the Loan

Once the loan is approved, your next step will be to sign the final loan documents, which usually takes place in the presence of a notary public. Be sure to verify the information within the document, especially the interest rate and loan terms. Also check to see if your name and address are correct. Finally, don’t forget to bring a cashier’s check for your down payment and closing costs.

Loan Calculator

Use the mortgage calculator to calculate your mortgage payment for any of the listings on this site. For more in-depth information, contact us directly.

Relocating to a new state, or even just a new neighborhood, is exciting but can also be stressful. Moving by yourself or moving the entire family entails many details like finding good doctors, or schools,  and even a local  gym.

We understand all the pieces involved and want to help. Let us take the guess work out of the process and help put together a package that relates to your lifestyle….your needs.

Let us help you put together a relocation package together built specifically for your needs. Just fill out the form!






Before You Move:

  • Notify post office, charge accounts, credit card companies, utility companies, past employer (for tax return purposes), subscriptions, family and friends, etc. of address change
  • Close out local bank accounts and set up new bank account, if necessary
  • Notify insurance companies of new location for coverage
  • Obtain school records, legal records and other important documents
  • Obtain medical records and history, transfer prescriptions, and research/request referrals for doctors, dentists, specialists, etc. in new town
  • Use up perishables, defrost freezer, clean refrigerator
  • Prepare large appliances and rugs for proper moving
  • Notify and register children in new school
  • Request a relocation package from your REALTOR® or the city’s Chamber of Commerce

On Moving Day:

  • Double check rooms, closets, and cabinets for possible items left behind
  • Make sure children have books and games to keep entertained during travel
  • Prepare pets for transportation
  • Carry jewelry and important documents on your person
  • Leave all old keys needed for new tenant with your REALTOR®

At Your New Address:

  • Check on utility services – gas, electric, water, telephone, etc.
  • If relocating to new state, register car within 5 days of arrival and apply for state driver’s license
  • If staying within state, obtain a driver’s license with your new address on it
  • Register children in school if you haven’t done so already
  • Set up new patient appointments with doctors, dentist, etc.
  • Explore your neighborhood!