- Market homes aggressively
- Recommend staging techniques for best marketability
- Qualify potential buyers
- Negotiate counter-offers, track the paperwork, and critical deadlines
- Have a proven track record of selling homes quickly for the highest sales prices
7 Steps to Buying a Home
Buying a home can get quite detailed. There are 75-100 action items in the process. Many homes listed online have already been sold. Your best bet is to hire a real estate professional with up-to-date information as your best resource to find the home of your dreams. Here are 5 steps to take to ensure you’re prepared for birthing your homeownership dream.
1. Choose a REALTOR®
Why? A REALTOR® will help you with all the following steps. He or she will save you valuable time and money by researching properties based on your criteria, helping you secure the best mortgage rates, counseling you on the offer amount and terms most favorable to you, and negotiating on your behalf. Ask an experience sales agents at Arbrook Realty.
2. Know What You Can Afford (Prequalify)
Consider these factors:
- Downpayment: Most loans require a downpayment. If you’re a first-time buyer or fall below certain income thresholds, you may qualify for affordable-housing programs.
- Pre-Qualifying for a loan: A lender will determine how much he thinks you can afford based on your income, employment history, education, assets (e.g., bank account balances, other property, insurance policies, pension funds), and debt. Check your credit report before the lender does to clear up any problems.
- Your comfort level: You don’t have to spend $500,000 on a home just because the lender says you can afford a $500,000 home. Do some math and determine what you’re comfortable spending.
3. Secure Financing (Loan Approval)
- Unless you’re paying cash for the home, you’ll need a loan. Keep in mind the true price of financing goes beyond the interest rate alone. Consider items such as points, total lender fees, term of the loan, and penalties for early payment. The lender will require an appraisal to verify that the home is worth the cost of the loan as well as a physical survey. Repairs may be required. Insurance must be purchased. All these conditions and others must be satisfied before a transaction can close.
4. Tour Homes with Your REALTOR®
Before you start looking, make a list of what you want. Then assign each item a priority. Some areas to consider are:
- Location: How close do you want to be to your job, shopping, the kid’s schools, or entertainment?
- Type of home: A single-family house typically provides the most space and gives you fewer restrictions on customizing your home. But a condo offers amenities without yard work—for a price.
- Age of the home: Existing homes have mature yards and established neighborhoods; however, they require more maintenance. Although new homes aren’t always without problems, they usually require less maintenance initially. Of course, you may have to put in landscaping and endure nearby construction.
- When you find that home, buy it! Here’s how you’ll know you’ve found the right home:
- Within a Few Seconds, the Home Embraces you the Moment you Enter
- You Are Possessive About the House despite its flaws
- You Begin Decorate and Arrange Furniture in Your Mind
- The House Fits Your Basic Needs
- You Want to Stop Looking at Other Homes
- You Want to Write an Offer Immediately
5. Make an Offer
Your REALTOR® is invaluable in this part of the process that involves many steps, including:
- Preparing a contract and the myriad details on it
- Handling negotiations with your best interests in mind
- Juggling inspections and option periods
6. Close the Deal
After weeks of research and decision-making, you close the transaction, at the title company’s office. The title agent will ask you to sign many, many documents and will explain each one. You’ll present a cashier’s check or wire, sign another document that itemizes closing costs (the lender will have given you an estimate in advance), and pay your share of the closing costs. In return, you will receive a deed, transferring ownership rights to you and your keys!
7. Move In!
Why Use Abrook Realty for Your Next Home Purchase? WE HAVE:
- Loads of experience. Hear what other buyer’s are saying about their ultimate home buying experience.
- Supercharged with searching power and can help you find those hidden gems
- Elite negotiating skills to seal the best deal for you
- Connected to everyone and everything you’ll need. Use our professional network
- Adhere to a strict code of ethics. Not every real estate agent is a Realtor, who is a licensed real estate salesperson who belongs to the National Association of Realtors®, the largest trade group in the country.
- Are waiting on your call!
7 Steps to Selling My Home
There’s a reason nearly 90% of homeowners use a Realtor when selling their home. Selling a home takes time, expert knowledge of neighborhood trends, and ninja negotiating skills. The agent’s chief task is to get buyers in the door, the contract sign, deal sealed, and your cash/keys – delivered! Here are 7 Steps to selling your home:
1. Determine Motivation for Selling
What are your reasons for selling? Everybody has a reason to sell. Compare the pros and cons in a written list to determine if you are making the right move. Talk to trusted professionals and decide if it’s the right time to sell.
2. Find a Realtor®
In the maze & craze of legal forms, financing, inspections, repairs, staging, strategic marketing, pricing, and negotiating, it makes sense to work with professionals who know the community and much more. Those professionals are the local Realtors who serve your area than can help walk you through 75-100 action items to get your home sold!
3. Find a Lender
Call your existing lender to find out your mortgage payoff balance by ordering a payoff statement. Then apply for a new mortgage loan. Ask for an estimate of costs. Compare rates and fees of other lending institutions. Make sure your are comfortable with your loan officer, and that the person has plenty of experience. Get a loan preapproval letter, so you know how much of a mortgage you will qualify to obtain.
4. Pricing Your Home Right
Several factors, including market, home’s condition, and interest rates, will determine how much you can get for your home. In other words, home selling is an art: part science, part marketing, and part negotiation.
5. Market Your Home for Maximum Exposure
Your Realtor should share a marketing plan with you, but the more you know about the process of selling your home the easier it is to support your Realtor’s efforts. Make your home sell fast with these tips.
6. Negotiate the Offer
Perhaps the most complex moment in the sales process comes when you receive an offer for your home. Whether you have one offer or several to consider, your Realtor is an expert to help navigate you throughout this process.
When you have a signed contract with the buyer for your home, you may feel as if you can breathe a sigh of relief. But before you can completely relax you need to get to the closing settlement table. Your Realtor’s ultimate goal is get you SOLD and CLOSED.
Arbrook Realty has a proven track record of selling homes quicker, for the highest prices using our strategic digital, marketing & media plans. Give us a call today to begin your successful home-selling experience.
Rent or Buy a Home?
Rent or buy? In reality, the level of equity you can build in a home keeps the drive to be a homeowner very strong. It’s about freedom: The ability to paint the walls whatever color you want, or know that a landlord is not going to raise your rent or ask you to leave. Also, owning a home is like having a personal savings account. You get to invest in your financial future each month by making monthly balance as you lower your mortgage payoff balance.
Here are a few points to consider when deciding whether homeownership or renting makes better sense for you.
Reasons to rent:
- Flexibility. Renting allows you to explore an area before making the longer-term commitment to homeownership. Unless you are certain about a specific neighborhood, renting allows time for research and discovery.
- Career uncertainty. If you think you might need to move in the near future, or are mulling job changes that span several areas of town or are located elsewhere in the country, you might want to rent. Buying ties you down to a greater extent.
- Income uncertainty. If you expect a pay hike or cut in the near future, that can change your borrowing ability as well as impact your ability to pay a mortgage.
- Bad credit. Creating a history of on-time rental payments can help you build the sort of credit you’ll need to qualify for a mortgage.
- No maintenance expenses. When a pipe leaks, you don’t head to the store; you head for the telephone and call the landlord.
- Utilities (sometimes) included. In some instances, the landlord may pay for many utilities such as water, sewer, garbage, and, in some cases, even heat and hot water.
But there is a downside, too: You may have no control over the fluctuation of your rent, a big-budget item that can change often. Long-term budgeting becomes more difficult.
Reasons to buy:
- Equity. When you pay rent, you are paying your landlord’s mortgage or adding equity to his or her bank account. However, when you have a home mortgage, you increase your degree of ownership in your home with every payment. A general rule is that if you intend to stay in your property for at least five to seven years, the costs of purchasing the home are more likely to be offset by accrued equity and increased housing value. In the event that equity in the home grows to more than a 20-to-80 percent loan-to-value ratio, you will be able to borrow against your equity in the home. This can be cautiously used should you need capital to pay for major purchases. If interest rates drop, you can refinance your mortgage at more favorable rates, or, once you’ve paid the entire mortgage off, borrow against the equity in your home to fund major purchases such as a second home or your child’s education.
- Tax deductions. You can deduct mortgage interest as well as your property taxes. Uncle Sam doesn’t give renters this bonus. Not only that, but if you meet certain requirements the IRS won’t apply a “capital gains” tax on your profits from the sale of your home. You can keep the first $250,000 in profit you make when selling the home if you’re single, or the first $500,000 if married. In addition, those who work from home may be eligible to take deductions for their home office and portions of utilities. Consult with your tax advisor for insight on the most current tax laws.
- Creative control. You like dozens of pictures on the wall? Well, hammer away — they are your walls now. Go ahead and paint them mango! Wish you had another room? Go ahead and add one.
- Maintenance choices. If you live in a house, you can decide how to approach maintenance, either doing it yourself or picking your own contractor. If you live in a condominium or homeowners’ association, you may pay a monthly fee to have maintenance work covered by the association’s contractors.
Making the shift from being a rent-paying tenant to a mortgage-paying homeowner can be a big step. Practically speaking, buying a home is still a good investment. Arbrook Realty is here to serve your real estate needs. Ask Roz Booker (RozB,) your Negotiating Ninjaneer of Real Estate, for a complimentary homebuying consultation.
Arbrook Realty Group, LLC offers a complete range of services to meet clients’ real estate needs. Arbrook Realty boasts qualified competence and technology to effectively handle Residential Sales, Relocation, REO & Short Sales, Leasing Services, BPO Valuations, Facilities Maintenance & Commercial Property Management. Whether you’re a homeowner, buyer, investor, financial services firm, or a commercial real estate company, contact us today to find out how we can put our expertise to work for you!