The Home Buying Process can sometimes feel a bit overwhelming. Will I find the house I am looking for? Will I qualify for a loan? Is now the right time to buy? Have I saved up enough money for a down payment? When It comes to finding your dream home the team at Apache Wells Realty has the answers you are looking for. As an Arizona Real Estate Buyer’s Agent, our team will walk you through the 6-step buying process and have you in your new home in no time. It all starts with the first step: Making a Decision to Buy.
Step 1: Deciding to Buy
For most people the decision to buy a home is the biggest financial decision of their lifetime. Buying a home can be complex and requires a lot of paperwork. That is why it is important to clarify the reasons for buying a home, and to ensure that this is the right decision for you. Once you have made the decision to move forward you can have peace of mind knowing you made the right decision.
Step 2: Prepare to Buy
Once you have made the decision to buy a home, the next step is to prepare yourself for the home buying experience. Before you look for a new home you should take some time to identify what the “perfect home” looks like to you, and obtain a loan pre-qualification from a licensed mortgage professional. Knowing both of these things will help you to not only choose a great agent to represent you, it will make your buying experience more enjoyable.
Identifying your “perfect home”: From a Home Owner’s perspective; the criteria for what makes a home the “perfect” home varies from buyer to buyer. Our tastes are as varied as our personalities. From a Real Estate Investor’s perspective; owning real estate is one of the best & least risky ways to secure equity or receive a greater return on your investment.
Whether you are looking for your dream home, or an investment property; the real estate buying decision, while similar, is uniquely different. That is why it is important to have a clear idea about why you are looking to buy,
and what kind of property you are looking for.
- Are you tired of paying rent?
- Do you want to start paying for your own mortgage instead of your landlord’s?
- Are you seeking to start building an investment portfolio?
- Are you looking for a property to rent out?
- Have you simply outgrown your current home?
At Apache Wells Realty we help our buyers to identify which properties, neighborhoods, and builders are right for them. With over 25 years of real estate sales and property development experience within the Arizona real estate markets, we save our buyers time by matching them with the homes to fit their needs.
Get Pre-approved: Before you begin looking at property, you should have an idea of what you can afford to buy. The easiest way to accomplish this is by speaking with a licensed mortgage professional and obtaining a letter of pre-approval. This will help to ensure that you are not wasting your time with properties outside of you budget, and will show your agent that you are serious about buying.
Whether you have your own lender or use our preferred lender, at Apache Wells Realty we work with our buyers to help them understand the loan approval process from start to finish. The pre-approval process is the first step in securing financing, and it all starts with preparing your green file.
Your green file contains all of the important financial documents you need in order to secure financing for your home or property. A lender will need to identify your ability to borrow and pay back a loan, the green file is the information they will need to determine this.
Your green file should contain:
- Financial statements
- Bank Accounts
- Credit Cards
- Auto loans
- Pay stubs
- Two years of Tax Returns
- 401k statements, stocks, bonds, life insurance, and mutual account information
- Request a copy of your most recent credit reports [Transunion, Equifax, Experian] and review them yourself for any inaccuracies. You can obtain a free copy of your report here.
It is important that you are approaching your purchase from a place of financial stability. Understanding your personal budget, the amount of your pre-approval, your down payment costs, and the availability of grants or other down payment assistance programs are just some of the ways Apache Wells Realty can help. Knowing your financing options is instrumental in the next step, deciding what to buy.
Step 3: Choosing a Real Estate Agent
The home buying experience should be one of the happiest and most enjoyable experiences of your life. Selecting a professional to represent you in this process should not be taken lightly. The best way to select an agent is through reputation and experience. Having a licensed professional to offer guidance and direction along the way will get you through the process with ease. You need someone who will listen to your wants and needs, and who will work to negotiate terms you are happy with
Apache Wells Realty Agents are highly experienced Arizona Realtors specializing in Gilbert, Chandler, Queen Creek, Mesa, Tempe and Scottsdale Arizona real estate. With over 25 years of Arizona real estate experience, our background in east valley land development, real estate market cycles, land valuations, and our network of preferred partners; we are committed to working extensively to help you find a home that suits your needs and that you can afford.
Step 4: Shopping for a Home
Perhaps the most enjoyable part of the process! Once you have identified your budget & financing options, and have an understanding of what criteria your dream home must meet, its time to go shopping. During this step, we will prepare a property list of the properties that best fit your needs.
Next we will take a look at all the available properties. We will go out for a drive in the area and complete a buyer’s tour.
At Apache Wells Realty we advise our clients on builder reputation, short term and long term market trends, and resale values; as well as resources for local school ratings and urban development plans. Once we have identified the properties you are most interested in we will set up appointments with the seller for you to complete the next step in the buying process: Making a Qualified Offer.
Step 5: Making a Qualified Offer
When submitting a qualified offer, there are several factors to be considered. The size of your offer should be based on 1) The seller’s asking price 2) Comparative Market Analysis of sold homes in the area 3) The qualified advice of your Real Estate Agent.
At Apache Wells Realty we listen to your wants and needs carefully. We advise our clients on true market value of the home before the offer is made so that you have piece of mind knowing that you have offered the most reasonable price possible. Our agents will prepare several different options, and we will work to negotiate terms you are happy with. Whether your offer is accepted, countered, or rejected; our agents will prepare a plan for all possible outcomes. Our agents will guide you every step of the way to reaching a successfully accepted offer.
Step 6: Closing the Purchase/Finalizing the Deal
Inspections, Appraisals, and Escrow: Once you have an accepted offer, you will begin the escrow period. At Apache Wells Realty, we work continually with the lender, the title company, and the listing agent to ensure that we meet the close of escrow date.
We will help you choose a closing agent who will hold your initial deposit until the time of final closing between you and the seller. The closing agent will also research your property to ensure that it is free of debts and encumbrances.
We will assist with selecting a qualified home inspector who can provide all necessary and required surveys and reports. We attend all home inspections with the buyer and provide important insight regarding the inspection findings. If the inspection is positive, the process goes ahead without hindrance. If the inspection is negative, you may have some leverage to bargain for a lower price on the property.
Our agents will negotiate on your behalf for any repairs and/or seller credits at closing. We also provide concierge service access to construction contractors that can assist with any repairs, upgrades, or remodeling you may choose to do after the close of escrow. Our preferred partners are trusted professionals and work to the highest standards.
If the purchase is dependent on financing of the property, a licensed appraiser will determine the value of the home for the bank. If it is deemed valuable enough for the loan, you will receive the go ahead for the purchase of your property.
Before you can officially move in, be sure to tie up loose ends. Before you proceed to closing you will need to perform a final walk-through of the home. The primary purpose of the walk-through inspection is to verify that the condition of the home has not changed since you first saw it, and to follow up on all inspection items the seller was supposed to correct.
Loan Closing: The closing is the last step in getting your mortgage and actually taking ownership of your new home. Closing is the process of transferring ownership form one owner to another. The closing process is where all papers and official documents will be signed. This is usually conducted in an escrow office and involves signing documents related to the purchase property and the mortgage agreement. Several things occur at the closing, among them are:
- Confirmation or terms between the you and your mortgage lender
- Your loan goes into effect and you receive your mortgage
- Confirmation of buyer and seller contract agreement
- Transfer of ownership from seller to buyer is completed.
The closing process does require a lot of paperwork, settling of outstanding fees or costs, and the transfer of ownership. Our agents will accompany you to your closing to answer any questions you might have. At the end of the closing you will receive the deed to the property, and you will get your keys to your new house.
Congratulations, you are a home owner!