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Buying a home is one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences you can have. It’s a chance to put down roots, build equity, and create a space that truly feels like your own. But it can also be a daunting process, especially if you’re a first-time homebuyer. That’s why working with a trusted Realtor is so important.
A Realtor is more than just a real estate agent – they’re a licensed professional who is committed to ethical and professional behavior, and who has a deep understanding of the local real estate market. They can help you navigate the complex process of buying a home, from finding the right property to negotiating the best deal.
Working with a Realtor to buy a home is an investment in your future. It gives you access to a wealth of knowledge and experience, and it ensures that you have an advocate in your corner every step of the way. So if you’re a new homebuyer, don’t hesitate to reach out to any of Hummel Group’s trusted team of Realtors.
Quick Homebuyers Checklist
Hummel Group is making it easier than ever for present and future homebuyers to navigate the process of buying and owning a home. When in doubt, just give us a call and we will work with you to clarify any next steps for you.
In a buyer’s consultation, you’ll discuss your goals and what you want most out of a new home. You will discuss with your Realtor any questions or concerns you have, and determine the needs you want to prioritize in your search, such as the number of bedrooms or bathrooms, your budget, and location.
After becoming familiar with your goals, your Realtor will then review the home buying process with you, so that you are completely clear on the steps involved in finding and purchasing a home. You will also be provided with an accurate timeline on how long the process is likely to take.
Before buying a home, it is important to first get pre-qualified for a mortgage. Getting pre-qualified means meeting with a lender to first provide pertinent information, such as your income, assets, and debts. Then, based on this information, the lender will give you an estimate on exactly how much you can afford to borrow.
Getting pre-qualified is important, because it lets you realistically understand your budget and how much you can afford. This tends to also make the home buying process much easier, because it narrows down your search for properties to within your acceptable price range. The result is a savings in time and effort, by avoiding properties that are outside your budget and which you cannot afford.
It’s important to note that pre-qualification is different from pre-approval. While pre-qualification is necessary preliminary step that gives you an estimate on how much you can afford to borrow, pre-approval, on the other hand, involves filling out a mortgage application and going through a hard credit check.
To get pre-qualified, you have several options and can either go online or meet with a lender in person. There are many pre-qualification tools available online which are convenient, but meeting in person will offer you a more accurate and personalized approach. In this case, expect to provide documentation, such as pay stubs, tax returns, or bank statements which can verify your income and assets.
It’s also a good idea to shop around, possibly even getting pre-qualified by multiple lenders in order to compare rates and find the better option among them. This can help you save money on your mortgage in the long run and make your home buying process smoother and more successful.
When searching for a new home, it’s important to consider the amenities that you want or need in your new living space. Here’s a list of amenities to consider when buying a home:
- Number of bedrooms and bathrooms
- Square footage and floor plan
- Outdoor space, such as a backyard, balcony, or patio
- Garage or designated parking space
- Storage space, such as a basement or attic
- Energy-efficient appliances and HVAC system
- Upgraded features, such as granite countertops and hardwood floors
- Home office or study area
- Laundry room or designated laundry space
- Security system or gated community
When creating your amenities list, consider what’s important to you and your lifestyle. Make a list of must-haves and nice-to-haves to help you prioritize your search and find the perfect home for you. Remember to also consider your future needs and how your home might accommodate changes in your lifestyle over time.
Touring homes is an exciting part of the home buying process. Here’s what you can expect during the home touring process:
Schedule Appointments: Your Realtor will schedule appointments for you to tour homes that fit your criteria. They’ll coordinate with the sellers’ Realtor to find a convenient time for you to visit the homes.
Drive-by Inspections: Before your scheduled appointments, you can drive by the homes to get a feel for the neighborhood and the exterior of the property. This can help you narrow down your list of homes to tour.
Walkthrough: When you arrive at each home, your Realtor will give you a tour of the property, pointing out the features and answering any questions you may have. Take your time to look around and imagine yourself living in the space.
Take Notes: Take notes about each home you visit, including the address, features you liked, and any potential issues or concerns. This will help you remember each property and compare them later.
Time to Follow Up: After touring each home, it’s important to follow up with your Realtor to discuss your thoughts and any questions about the property you may have. This can help clarify for you many points and concerns, while also giving you a deeper insight into how real estate professionals think on the matter.
Repeat: It may be necessary to tour multiple properties before settling on what you feel is the right one for you. Remember not to get discouraged if you don’t find your ideal home straight away. Keep touring and searching, until you find the perfect match.
Touring homes is an essential part of the home buying process, that when done with a Realtor will give you greater insight into each property than you could have realized alone. Touring allows you to see each property in person which you will want to do before committing to any home. By following this outline, you can streamline your home touring experience and get more out of your time investment here.
For some, making an offer on a home can be the most stress-inducing part of the home buying process. Before you start, consider these steps which can help you better understand what to expect:
Determine Your Offer Price: This will be primarily based on the market value of your home, as well as your budget and any repairs or upgrades which are needed. From this, you and your Realtor can determine the best offer price to make. They can also provide you with comparable home prices in the area so you can make an accurate and fair offer.
Draft Your Offer: After consulting on the various factors that will affect your offer price, it’s time to draft the offer itself. Your Realtor will do this for you on a standard real estate contract, which will include factors like the offer price, down payment, contingencies, and terms of sale. They will review the contact with you, clarifying any and all points and answering any questions you have during the process.
Submit Your Offer: With your offer drafted, and the contract reviewed and signed, your Realtor will submit your offer to the seller who will then have the option of accepting, rejecting, or countering your proposed offer.
Negotiation: If the seller counters your offer, you and your Realtor will review the counteroffer and decide if you want to accept, reject, or counter it again. You may go back and forth with the seller until you reach a mutually acceptable agreement.
Home Inspection: Once your offer is accepted, you’ll need to schedule a home inspection. The inspector will look for any issues or repairs needed and provide you with a report.
Closing: After the inspection and any necessary repairs are made, you’ll attend the closing to sign the final paperwork and transfer ownership of the home.
Making an offer on a home can be a complex process, but your Realtor can guide you through each step and help you make an informed decision. By following these steps, you can submit a strong offer and increase your chances of getting your dream home.
Closing is the final step in the home buying process. It’s important to understand what happens here and what to expect, especially if you’re a first-time home buyer.
- Review the Closing Disclosure: You will be provided with a Closing Disclosure by your lender, which will outline the final terms of your loan. You will need to review this document carefully, preferably with your Realtor, to ensure that everything is accurate and all factors known.
- Schedule the Closing: Your Realtor will coordinate with the seller and title company to schedule the closing on your behalf. For your part, you will need to bring a government-issued ID and cashier’s check or wire transfer in order to cover the down payment and closing costs.
- Review the Settlement Statement: The title company will also be providing you with a Settlement Statement. This statement will detail all the expenses incurred and related to the purchase of the home. Review this document carefully to ensure everything is accurate.
- Sign the Documents: During the Closing, you’ll sign several documents, including the mortgage agreement, promissory note, and deed of trust. Your Realtor will be present with you and can answer any and all questions you may have here.
- Pay Closing Costs: Paying the closing costs is a necessary step in the process, which includes any loan origination fees, title insurance, and appraisal fees. Your lender will breakdown these and any other costs for you so you can clearly see how it adds up.
- Receive the Keys: After all your paperwork has been signed and funds transferred, it’s time to receive the keys and move in to your new home!
Closing is naturally a complicated process with a lot of paperwork that needs to be signed and ensured accuracy on, but when you work with a Realtor like Hummel Group then every detail will be verified for you and you will have complete transparency on the process with insight on how to make the most of it along the way.
Ready to buy your dream home
or next big real estate investment?
Why work with Hummel Group Realtors?
Home Selection Tailored to You
By taking the time to better understand exactly what you want in a home, we can then offer you the best most personalized recommendations for the area.
Negotiate the best price
Realtors at Hummel Group have a great track record of negotiating prices below their market price.
Best Advocates for You
As we are working on behalf of you, we will always act in your best interest, even when it goes against ours.
Deep Insider Knowledge
Decades of combined experience amongst our Realtor team means a lot of insider knowledge you can leverage on your next investment.
Most loan programs require a FICO score of 620 or better. Borrowers with higher credit scores represent less risk to the lender, often resulting in a lower down payment requirement and better interest rate. Conversely, home shoppers with lower credit scores may need to bring more money to the table (or accept a higher interest rate) to offset the lender’s risk.
Yes, you should have a home inspection completed during your due diligence period. A home inspection is one of the most vital steps when purchasing a property. A professional inspector has a keen eye for how well the house has been taken care of. The inspectors can comment on structural and cosmetic issues, along with any local code issues.