Home Ownership...are YOU ready?

Step - 1 Make the Decision to Buy

It seems obvious, but it's good to note that the first step to buying a house is making the decision to buy. Consider the reasons you want a new house and write them down. Determine how long you want to live in the new house - does buying still make good financial sense? Can you afford a house that will meet your list of requirements? A good rule of thumb is your mortgage payment should not exceed 1/3 of your net monthly income.  Check out the 2009 Housing Incentive For First Time Home Buyers!

Step 2 - Seek Professional Guidance

A Kay's trained associate can meet with you to hear the reasons you want to buy a house and your plans for the future. We'll talk about economic factors liable to affect the market today and tomorrow, as well as how you would like your new house and neighborhood to grow with you.

At this time, we will also help you get pre-qualified for a mortgage loan. Pre-qualification is a written statement from a loan officer indicating his or her opinion that you will be approved for a mortgage loan up to a certain amount. The fact that you are pre-qualified will help you when negotiating for your new home.

Step 3 - Begin the Hunt

After our initial meeting, we will search all resources for houses on the market that fit your criteria. If time is a factor we will preview these houses to eliminate the duds. Then, we will schedule appointments to tour the houses at times convenient to you.

As we tour houses, we will ask you what you like and what you don't like. You'll probably amend your "wish list" as we tour houses, some things will become more important and others less important. With this new information, the Kay's associate will be able to refine your search criteria to narrow in on the house of your dreams.

Step 4 - Know the Market

We know the Stephens County Market!  Our knowledge of the local market is an essential factor in the house search.

In a "seller's market". It is not unusual to see multiple offers on a property, full-price offers and even above-price offers. On the flip side, during a "buyer's market" there are more houses for sale than buyers. This gives you more negotiating room as houses are taking longer to sell.

Step 5 - Find Your Dream House

 When we do find your dream home, we'll put together the purchase offer tailored for your needs.

The offer is normally presented with "earnest money". This is a cash deposit made to a home seller to secure an offer to buy the property. The amount is applied to closing costs. If the seller accepts the offer, generally closing is held 30 to 60 days from the offer date (generally dependent on the turn around time of your mortgage financing).

Step 6 - Negotiate the Deal

It is not uncommon to receive a counter offer when the initial purchase offer is submitted. Don't let this discourage you. We will discuss the counter offer and you can then decide whether or not to accept the counter offer, submit a counter offer, or reject the counter offer and move on.

Market conditions will play a role in how aggressively we negotiate the deal. We will also work within your limits. Emotions can lead to buyer's remorse. It is better to set limits prior to negotiating an offer and stick to these limits.

Step 7 - Get a Loan

During the closing period, you will be working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. Since you pre-qualified for the loan before starting your home search, you will be that much closer to the end. I'll gather the necessary property information your lender will need to close the loan.

Step 8 - Close the Deal

You will receive a "Good Faith Estimate" of closing costs at the time the loan application is submitted to the lender. The estimate is based on the loan officer's past experience and may not include all the closing costs. I will be glad to review the "Good Faith Estimate," answering questions and highlighting missing costs and estimates I believe to be low.

Step 9 - Move In

Congratulations! It's time to move into your new house and make it your home. Enjoy this exciting time of the American Dream.