Before the internet existed, the process would have occurred in a different order. You would have first sought out your real estate professional, then you would have begun searching for a home. This is still happening today, but now you have the ability to find the home you love on your own. There’s no substitute, however, for seeing the home in person, and that’s what you’ll need a licensed real estate agent for.
Let’s say that you did find that dream home on the internet. You drove by it a few times, maybe even had the opportunity to talk with the owner when you saw them outside. You’re ready to buy that home, so now what do you do?
Step 1: Assess your financial situation. Do you currently own a home that must sell before you can purchase the new one? Will you need a bridge loan to give you time to switch from one mortgage to the next? Are you a first time home buyer looking for a way to get into a home with as little money out of pocket as possible? Do you have enough money for a downpayment? You may need as much as 30% down in today’s market to qualify for jumbo loans. Do you know what a jumbo loan is? Are you aware that you’ll need to offer up an “earnest deposit” when you make your offer?
These are all things that you need to know about before you take the next step. Being prepared with your information before you approach the lender is going to speed up the process of buying your home.
Step 2: Find a reputable lender and get pre-qualified. The purchase contract in Arizona requires the inclusion of a document called the LSR (Loan Status Report.) Without this document, the contract is incomplete. This is a document that the lender will complete that shows the seller that you are in fact qualified to purchase their home. Why is this important to the seller? If and when the seller accepts your offer, their home will be taken off the market and will only be eligible to receive backup offers in the event that your offer falls through. The seller wants to know that the valuable time spent working with you, the potential buyer, is not wasted, and that is why they want to see that you have a lender who is prepared to fund the loan at close of escrow. The next step in your home-buying process is quite possibly the most important step. Stay tuned for part 2 of “So You Found The Right House, Now What?”