Welcome to my Buyer's Guide. This is a lengthy page of information but I tried to include most aspects of the the Buying Process to give you a good idea of what you might expect to encounter. Of course not all transactions are the same so it may differ in your case but this will serve as a good guide line. If you have other specific questions, please just contact me and I will get back to you as soon as possible with an answer.
The Buying Process
If you’re thinking about buying a home, the first thing you should do is focus on exactly what you're looking for. Start by establishing your priorities in these three areas:
There is also the question of whether or not to buy a new home. New homes tend to have more spacious living and family rooms, and they’re generally easier to maintain. However, many homes built years ago offer more total space for the money and larger yards. Taxes may also be lower.
Many people are charmed by the character of an older home, but deterred by potential maintenance costs. Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage's Home Protection Plan gives you a safety net for unexpected repairs on many home systems and appliances for a full year or more after you move in.
If you’re thinking of buying a new construction home, there are other matters to take into account.
This mortgage calculator below will help you estimate your monthly mortgage payment. Simply enter the price of the home, your down payment and loan details to calculate your monthly payment.
While you’re thinking everything through, do a little research by conducting a property search and reviewing our neighborhood info. Use the mortgage calculator at the bottom of this page or contact our mortgage experts to get an idea of what your costs will be.
Once you have a sense of what you want in a home, contact me and I'll help you find neighborhoods and properties that appeal to you. Provide as many details as possible about what you have in mind. This will help them determine which properties you should see. With our experts at your side, you can rest assured you will find the right one.
When you go out to look at homes, we suggest bringing the following items along:
Your real estate agent will likely provide detailed information about each home you see. That said, don’t be afraid to snoop around a little. You will want to find out as much as possible. Sellers understand that because their home is on the market, it will be looked over pretty thoroughly.
Also, don’t hesitate to ask any questions you may have – about specific rooms, features or functions. Pay particular attention to areas that could become problematic, such as additions, defects and areas that have been repaired. As a potential buyer, you have the right to know.
If you want to go back to a home for another look, your agent will be happy to schedule an appointment.
People buy homes for many reasons: to be closer to their jobs, get extra space for a growing family, downsize, or other lifestyle changes. With your own reasons in mind, consider the following questions:
There is no set number of homes you should look at before you decide to make an offer on one. The perfect home may be waiting for you on your first visit. If it isn't, the house-hunting process will help you get a feel for the homes in the community and create your “short list.”
If you're looking in more than one community, try to make the most of each house-hunting trip. Stop by the local chamber of commerce to pick up promotional literature. You can also ask your agent for welcome kits, maps and information about schools, churches and recreational facilities.
The mortgage calculator below will help you estimate your monthly mortgage payment. Simply enter the price of the home, your down payment and loan details to calculate your monthly payment.
Finding The Right Neighborhood
If you’re unsure what to expect from a new neighborhood, your agent can help.
If you have children, your real estate agent can show you where the schools are, and provide information about school districts, including test scores, extracurricular activities, bus service and more. If you're relocating, your agent may be able to put you in touch with teachers and principals when you visit.
Your agent can also give you pointers on where to shop, eat, and find the kind of lifestyle you’re seeking. These types of local amenities should weigh into your decision-making – and of course, you can always find out more about an area by searching online.
As they say, location, location, location. The neighborhood where a home is located will have a big impact on its price (and on its resale value). You’ll want to be well-informed.
To find out if a home you’re looking at is priced well for the area, we suggest:
You’ve found the right home. Your offer has been accepted. Now it’s time to close.
You “close” on a home when the seller is satisfied that you meet all conditions of the purchase contract. This clears the way for the deed to the property to be recorded in your name.
In most cases, you'll be given the opportunity to inspect the home immediately prior to closing. When you do, check on any work the seller agreed to have done in response to your initial inspection. You should also check the condition of walls and ceilings from which window treatments, pictures or any other attached furnishings have been removed. If you find any problems, don't hesitate to bring them up at the closing. It is the seller's responsibility to correct them.
Once you have the keys, you'll want to have the locks changed. Also, put your deed and other important paperwork from the closing in a secure place, preferably a safe deposit box. Even though it's all on file with the county, it's smart to know where your copies are and have access to them at all times.