5 Steps to Buying a House
Buying a house is likely the most expensive purchase of your life. You’re not only buying a place to live, but also making a major investment and commitment. Once you make the decision to buy a house, follow these steps to complete the process:
1. Get prequalified: It is always best to be prequalified for a mortgage so you know how much you can afford, and run a credit check to determine what interest rate you will get. Once your pre-qualification is done, you’ll receive a pre-qualification letter, which you can use to negotiate with sellers later on. Having an official letter will make your offers more legitimate to sellers.
2. Find a realtor: A realtor is very helpful, not only in helping you find a house, but also for making sure you get a fair deal. Your realtor knows the local area and market well and has relationships with sellers’ agents and lenders. Both realtors—the buyer’s and seller’s agent—get paid a percentage of the final sale of the house.
3. Shop around and find a house: Your realtor can suggest houses you might like, and you can also look online at websites such as Trulia.com and Realtor.com. Your realtor can arrange showings for houses you’d like to see. Make sure to look at a good number of houses before making a decision. If you find a house that meets your criteria and fits in your budget, move on to the next step.
4. Begin your mortgage process: The mortgage process is typically 45-60 days and includes the home inspection and mortgage approval. Try to find your own home inspector and be there when the inspection happens. The inspection fees may be included in the closing costs, which the buyer pays for. You will work with your mortgage lender to get your loan approved by providing proof of income and assets for down payment. Once the lender has all the information they will let you know when your loan is approved, and you are ready to purchase the home.
5. Close the deal: If everything goes according to plan, you can move into closing the deal. This involves signing a stack of paperwork, transferring the deed and title to the house and paying both the down payment and the closing costs. Your bank will also pay the sellers the total cost of the house. Once the closing is complete, you’ll be handed the keys and are free to move in.
Buying a house is not a decision to be made hastily. Do your best to understand the process and the contract you sign and see your purchase turn into a profitable investment as well as a place to call home.
For more information contact First National Bank at 515-232-5561 or visit www.FNB247.com.