Six Steps to Buying a Home

Step One

Every journey home is unique.  Start your journey with me today!

The first step in your journey is to determine how you are going to make this home purchase.  There are several options out there.  Are you paying cash?  Are you financing through a private lender or bank?  Are you looking for owner financing options?  No matter how you plan to make your purchase it is very important to have a proof of funds or pre-qualification/pre-approval letter before you do anything else.  

Why is this important?  First, a pre-qualification, if you are financing through a private lender or bank, gives you the appropriate budget to start house shopping.  You don't want to start searching for a home without knowing what you can afford.  You certainly don't want to fall in love with a home just to find out later that you do not qualify to purchase the home.  This simple step will save you some frustration and heartache when it comes to home shopping.  Secondly, a pre-qualification or proof of funds gives the seller confidence that you are able or qualified to purchase their home.  They can enter into a contract to sell their home to you with the peace of mind that you can afford to make this purchase.  This simple statement of your purchase ability can lead to your offer being accepted.   

Step Two

Now that you have your budget determined the next step in your journey is to start searching for your perfect home!  This is where I come in!  I will ask you several questions about what you are looking for, what kind of community amenities you are looking for, and what is most important to you in a home.  From these questions I can start a very focused search for you to find that perfect home for you!  

Ready to get started?  Call me and let's start searching!  239-339-7540

Step Three

Now comes the fun part of your journey!  Let's start looking at houses!  

I will be sending you properties that match your search criteria via email from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).  From this search you can pick out property that you are interested in seeing in person.  You simply let me know what property or properties interest you and I will schedule the showing.  Did you find a property on Zillow that maybe isn't listed in the MLS, or is a For Sale by Owner?  No problem!  I can get us scheduled to see those properties as well.

Beyond the excitement of home shopping, why is it beneficial to see these properties in person?  First, sometimes pictures are not very clear, or they have used wide angle or other camera filters when taking pictures, so the view is a little skewed.  Seeing the interior of the home and the actual size of the rooms in person is always beneficial.  Second, it may interest you to see the condition of the home up close.  Some photos and lighting can cover up or do not show condition very well.  For this reason it may be important to you to be see everything in person.  Lastly, it is always nice to visit the area where the home is located.  This gives you a better idea of things that may be important to you such as the neighborhood, the street where the home is located, the view, the traffic, etc.  All of these things should be considered when you are making such a large and important purchase.

Not a local but still want to see a property in more detail?  No problem!  I provide my non-local clients with video tours of property they are interested in.  This can be done in recorded video that I email to you, or live video feeds through programs such as Skype, Facebook Messenger, or Video Calls.  

Step Four

So far in this journey, you have been pre-qualified for a home, started a focused home search and have been to several showings.  Now comes an exciting step; you have determined which home you are ready to buy!  How exciting!  It's time to write up your offer!  First you will determine what price you want to offer for the home.  I will provide you data about the area that will help you determine your price.  Next you will determine what kind of earnest money deposit you want to accompany your offer.  This is an initial deposit to show that your offer is serious.  If your offer is not accepted you get this money back, if your offer is accepted this money goes towards the purchase at closing.  Next you will determine any terms you want to be part of the offer.  Do you want to negotiate some furnishings or decorations into this purchase?  This is the time to determine if there are any additional items you want included.

We will put all of your terms and your purchase price offer into a sales contract, along with an earnest money deposit, and present it to the listing agent.  The listing agent will then present your offer to the seller.  At this point they might accept your offer right away, or they might make you a counter-offer.  In some cases your offer might get declined altogether.  All of these possibilities are part of the normal negotiation process when purchasing a home.

I am here to help you make the strongest and best offer possible in an effort to reduce the stress of negotiation for you and to get your offer accepted.  I will provide you with everything you need to make a strong offer through my knowledge of the market and data about comparable properties.  It is my goal to help you be confident about your offer and to understand the terms included.  By providing you with these tools it is my hope to get your offer accepted and get you under contract on your future home.    

Step Five

Your journey is moving right along with lots of exciting steps so far.  So what comes next?  Once you are under contract on a home there are several items that will need to be addressed by you, the buyer.  There are timelines and deadlines to meet when you are under contract for the purchase of a home.  I will be there for you to make sure that you are on track for meeting all of these deadlines.  Time is of the essence when under contract for a home purchase in Florida.  

These timeline items include, but are not limited to, Earnest Money Deposit, Inspection period, Mortgage Application, Mortgage Commitment, etc.  Together we will make sure that all of your contractual obligations are met.

Step Six

Your journey home is coming to an exciting end!  Just a couple of things left to do now!  First, it's time for the final walk through of the home.  This is usually done the day before, or the morning of your closing.  Why should you do this?  This is to ensure that all of the terms in the contract have been met and the home is being left to you in good condition.  If the appliances were to be left, are they still there?  Is the home free of the sellers personal belongings and trash?  Are the walls in good condition and not damaged from moving out?  Were the inspection items corrected/repaired, (if applicable)?  All of these things are important to look for and check on now, before you sign the papers.  If there is a problem you still have the ability to ensure that it is corrected or made right.  Once you sign the papers at closing, the home is yours and your recourse for missing or damaged items decreases significantly.

Now that the walk through is complete, this is the moment you have been waiting so anxiously for!  It's time for closing!!  Today you sit down and sign the paperwork and get handed the keys to your new home.  

It is my goal to make this entire process smooth for my customers but in some cases the time leading up to the closing can be very stressful and can leave buyers feeling very anxious.  Now is the time to take a deep breath and smile; you made it!  You are here taking ownership and the keys to your new home and this is a time to celebrate!  

Congratulations and welcome home!  It has been my pleasure to be on this journey with you!

Sara M Skorak, Realtor®

RE/MAX Trend
1715 Cape Coral Pkwy, Cape Coral, FL
239-339-7540 (direct)
239-541-1661 (office)
Sara.Skorak@Remax.net
www.LeeIslandsCoastalLiving.com

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