Steps to a Successful Home Purchase
Step 1: Find an experienced and trustworthy Boston, MA Realtor - Did you know the top 20% of agents sell 80% of all real estate? An amazing statistic, but really demonstrates how important experience is when buying what is most likely your largest investment. Choose a full time agent that knows the market and is a market leader working for a reputable company. You don’t want someone ‘learning’ from their mistakes when it’s your wallet!
Step 2: Talk to a mortgage banker about your pre-approval – A pre-approval is an essential step in the home buying process in the Back Bay and needs to be done as one of the first steps. No Back Bay seller will look at any offer without a pre-approval letter and some sellers will not even allow scheduled showings! Talking to a mortgage banker for a pre-approval does not lock you in to using them so don’t worry about mortgage rates or closing costs at this point. Once you go under contract for your Back Bay home, then that is when it is time to compare rates and closing costs as banks rates change on a daily basis.
Step 3: Calculate your down payment – As part of the pre-approval process, you will need to start to think about how much you are looking to put down. You can purchase a home for as little as 3.5% down (Or 0% for Veterans) and the down payment can come from many sources including gifts from family. You can even borrow against a 401k for your down payment. An important percentage to keep in mind is 20%. With a down payment of 20% a home owner does not have to pay for Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) and can make a difference in the monthly mortgage payment.
Step 4: Figure out your comfort range & Narrow down your search area(s) – It is a mortgage banker’s job to tell you want you can afford, but it is your job to figure out what you are comfortable affording when purchasing a Back Bay home. Remember to factor in insurance, property taxes and condo fees into your estimate. Figuring out your comfort range will help you narrow down the areas and neighborhoods that are available to you. Keep an open mind is some of the best advice that can be given!
Step 5: Go house shopping – This is the fun part! If you like HGTV then you are going to love this. In 2011, according the National Association of Realtors, the average home buyer looked at 12 homes over 12 weeks before finding their dream home. Figure out what your ‘must have’s’ are, but more importantly figure out what the ‘absolute no’s’ are. Some buyer’s find their home the first time they are out and others it can take a month to year. There is no ‘right’ amount of time when it comes to your home search.
Step 6: Making an offer – This is when it gets very real… It is when ‘pen hits paper’. Remember that the offer price is not the only thing to be considering in the offer phase. Other aspects of the offer that will need to be considered are: The amount of down payments put into escrow, how long the offer will be good for, the Purchase and Sale completion date, when you would like to take ownership of the home (closing date) and whether you are planning on doing a Home, Pest, Radon and Lead Paint Inspection. If you are purchasing a condo then you will also want your offer contingent upon a review of condo docs and condo budget. It is important to discuss all of these issues with your Back Bay Realtor as different situations (multiple offer situations) can impact an offer dramatically in order to make it more attractive.
To read the rest of this article and see all the steps of a home purchase, visit www.MoveWithChubb.com/Blog/A-Successful-Home-Purchase .
Step 7’: Home Inspections
Step 8: Choose Your Financing
Step 9: Purchase & Sale Agreement
Step 10: Closing on Your Home
If you are thinking about buying or selling a home in the Back Bay or looking to move up to a bigger home, then it would be a true pleasure to have the opportunity to sit down with you. Give me a call at 617-480-2600 or contact me by email at Jeff@MoveWithChubb.com.
Give the #1 RE/MAX Agent in Boston a call at 617-480-2600 or visit him online at www.MoveWithChubb.com.