Buying or selling a home in Hampton Roads?

Buying a home can be stressful for a lot of people, but it's not too complex with some up-front planning. I like to provide buyers with an outline of the entire deal so they know exactly what to expect. These are my nine steps to buying a home.

When you're ready to get started, just contact me here or send me e-mail. I'm glad to answer questions you have regarding this information.

Step 1 - Get ready to purchase a home
There are several things you should take into account before you look for a home. You'll probably want to form a check list of items you need, plan for what school districts you want to live in, and start planning your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than 30 percent of your net monthly income is a good rule of thumb to follow.

Step 2 - Get in touch with a real estate agent
This is where I come in. I'd like to plan a time to get together with you and speak with you regarding why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your upcoming plans. We'll talk about the mortgage industry, other economic factors that might affect your buying decision today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and schools in the Hampton Roads area.

In addition, I'll assist you in getting started on your loan. RE/MAX Coast & Country works with some of Hampton Roads's finest mortgage professionals, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They can assist you in deciding which type of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 - Begin your home search
After our first meeting, I'll begin looking for homes on the market that are a great fit for you. I'll research many of the homes and exclude the bad ones, and then we'll book appointments to view the homes at a time that's convenient for you.

As we view homes, I'll identify good features and bad ones. And I'll ask you to point out what things you like and dislike. It's pretty common for buyers to update their wish list as we tour homes and some items become more essential than others. If that's the situation, I'll look through all the listings one more time and narrow it down to the house you've been waiting for.

Step 4 - Know the housing market
Your agent's knowledge of the Hampton Roads housing market is a fundamental component in your house search. And I can assure you I'm informed of all the neighborhoods and schools, and I will alert you to which areas are "hot" and call for immediate action and the others that are "cool" and allow for careful examination.

When we view homes, I'll be sure to tell you if the seller's asking price has room for negotiation or if I believe the home is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, trust your instincts and make sure you ask lots of questions. Any real estate agent in Hampton Roads will convince you they know the home market. If it doesn't seem like they know everything, call me at 757-287-2526 or e-mail me at, and I'll be glad to answer any questions you might have. My knowledge of the market will help you stay a step ahead through the entire deal.

Step 5 - Find the home you've been looking for
I know we'll find your dream home in the Hampton Roads area. When we do, I'll thoroughly develop your purchase offer. The offer will be tailored keeping your needs in mind, including many contingencies. A few examples are obtaining financing, finishing the inspection, and a clean title.

Let RE/MAX Coast & Country guide you through finding your dream home in Hampton Roads Upon presenting your purchase offer, you'll probably need to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit made to a seller to secure an offer to buy the property and is typically applied to the closing costs. If your offer is accepted, we should close within 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows sufficient time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 - Negotiate
Unfortunately most deals aren't closed on the beginning offer - it's really common to receive a counter offer. But don't let this discourage you. We'll discuss whether or not to accept the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and go on.

Market conditions will play a big part in how aggressively we negotiate the deal. We'll also work within your financing limits. And when it's all said and done, we'll formulate a deal that is best for you.

Step 7 - Secure a loan
After the deal is complete, you'll begin working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. If you've been pre-qualified, this won't take long at all, but you'll want to stay in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll look after all the property information your lender will need to close the loan.>

Step 8 - Close the deal
Your mortgage lender will send you a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing closing costs within three days of receiving your loan application. The estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements require that it has to contain all closing costs and fall within a tight range of accuracy, and I'll review the estimate and let you know if everything looks adequate.

Then it's time to close on your home. This will probably take place at a title company or escrow office and will likely be a smooth and relaxed occasion.

Step 9 - Move in
Success! Now you can move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything, make sure you call me at 757-287-2526 or send me an e-mail.

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