Purchasing a home in Austin?

Buying a home can be stressful for many people, but it isn't that complicated with a bit of planning ahead of time. I like to give buyers a road map of the whole deal so they'll understand exactly what they can expect. Here are my nine steps to buying a home. When you're ready to get started, you can contact me here or e-mail me at . I'm happy to answer questions you have about this information.

Step 1 – Get ready to purchase a home
Before you start your home search, there are plenty of things you should do. When you start your search, you'll want to assemble an index of features you want, plan for what school districts and neighborhoods you'd like to live in, and start planning around your budget. A good rule to adhere to is that your mortgage payment should be less than 30 percent of your monthly income.

Step 2 – Speak with a real estate agent in Austin
This is where I can help. I'd be happy to schedule a time to get together with you and talk about your real estate needs and get an idea of your plans for the future. We'll discuss everything from neighborhoods, school districts in the Austin area, the mortgage and housing industries, to any other economic factors that could affect your buying decision today or in the future.

I can also help you get started on your loan. There are some very good mortgage professionals in Austin, and I work with a lot of them, so you're in great hands. They'll assist you with determining which kind of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Begin looking for a home
After our first meeting, I'll start finding available houses on the market that suit your needs. I'll preview most of the houses and throw out the bad ones, and then we'll schedule appointments to tour the homes whenever it's most convenient for you.

When we view the houses, I'll show you the positive features, as well as negative ones. And I'll ask you to talk about things you like and don't like. It's pretty common for buyers to amend their list of must-haves as we tour homes and some things become more important than others. If that's the case, I'll search the listings one more time and trim it down to the home you've been dreaming about.

Step 4 – Understand the market
Your agent's knowledge of the Austin home market is a necessary agent in your home search. And I assure you I'm conscious of all the neighborhoods and schools, and I'll alert you to what areas are "hot" and require prompt action and some that are "cool" and allow for careful consideration.

When we view houses, 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, be careful and make sure you ask a lot of questions. Any real estate agent will claim to comprehend the home market. If it doesn't seem like they know everything, just call me at 512-834-1600 or e-mail me at , and I'll be more than happy to answer your questions. My knowledge of the market will help you stay a step above the rest through the entire process.

Step 5 – Find your dream house
I'm certain we'll find your dream house in the Austin area. When that happens, I'll thoroughly create your home purchase offer. The offer will be tailored keeping your needs in mind and the home, including several contingencies, such as getting financing, carrying out the home inspection, and a clear title.

Upon submitting your offer, you'll need to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit given to a home seller to secure an offer to purchase the property and is typically put towards the closing costs. If your offer is accepted, we should close on the property about 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows plenty of time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
Unfortunately most deals don't close on the first offer – it's extremely common to receive a counter offer. Don't let this intimidate you. We'll talk over whether or not to accept the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and move on.

Market conditions determine how aggressively we negotiate the deal. We'll also work within your financing constraints. And at the end of the day, we'll put together a contract that is best for you.

Step 7 – Secure financing
After we sign the final contract, you'll begin working with your lender to close the loan. If you've been pre-approved, this shouldn't take much time at all, but you'll need to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll take care of all the property information your mortgage lender will need to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
Your lender will send you a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing closing costs within three days of getting your loan application. You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing closing costs from your mortgage lender within three days of getting your application. The estimate is based on the loan amount, and RESPA requirements mandate that it has to include all closing costs and be within a precise range of accuracy. I'll analyze the estimate and let you know if everything looks adequate.

Then it's time to close on your house. This will most often occur at a title company or escrow office and will probably be a smooth and pleasant occasion.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, just call me at 512-834-1600 or e-mail me at .

Looking to Buy?

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