Are you buying your home in Lancaster?

For many people, buying a home is a stressful event. But with a little planning ahead of time, it's not that complex. So they know exactly what to expect, I like to furnish buyers with an outline of the entire deal. Below are my nine steps to purchasing a home. When you're ready to get started, you can contact me here or e-mail me at . I'm glad to address questions you have about this information.

Step 1 – Get ready to purchase
Before you start looking for a home, there are plenty of things you should consider. You'll want to make an outline of features you want to have, get a feel for what neighborhoods and school districts you'd like to live in, and start working on your budget. Keeping your mortgage payment less than a third of your monthly income is a good rule of thumb to go by.

Step 2 – Get in touch with a real estate agent in Lancaster
This is where I can help. We'll schedule a time to get together so we can talk about your real estate needs and get an idea of your upcoming plans. We'll talk about everything from neighborhoods, school districts in the Lancaster area, the mortgage industry, to any other economic factors that may affect your buying decision today or in the future.

I can also help you start the loan process. I partner with some of the finest mortgage professionals in Lancaster, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They can assist you in figuring out which kind of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Begin house hunting
Following our first meeting, I'll begin searching for homes on the market that are good for you. I'll preview most of the houses and throw out the duds, and then we'll book appointments to tour the homes whenever it's convenient for you.

When we tour the houses, I'll call attention to positive features and negative ones. I'll even ask you about things you like and don't like. Most often, buyers update their must-have list as we tour houses and some features become more important than others. If that's the case, I'll look through all the listings once more and trim it down to the house you've been wishing for.

Step 4 – Comprehend the market
My awareness of the Lancaster home market is an imperative agent in your house search. I'm familiar with all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I can communicate some neighborhoods are "hot" and warrant immediate action and some that are "cold" and allow for more examination.

As we tour houses, I'll be sure to tell you if the asking price has room for negotiation or if I believe the home is "priced to sell." Be mindful and be sure to ask plenty of questions, as every REALTOR will tell you they comprehend the home market. If it appears they don't know everything, call me at (740)681-1463 or e-mail me at , and I'll be more than happy to answer any questions you may have. My understanding of the market will help you stay a step ahead throughout the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find the house you've been waiting for
We'll find the house of your dreams in the Lancaster area, and when that happens, I'll carefully create your home purchase offer. The offer will be tailored to suit your needs and the home, including several contingencies. A few examples are getting financing, completing the home inspection, and a clear title.

Upon submitting your purchase offer, you'll want to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit made to the seller to secure the offer to buy the property, and it's typically applied to the closing costs. If the seller accepts the offer, we should close on the property within 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows necessary time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
A lot of contracts 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 about whether or not to agree to the counter offer, submit our own counter offer, or reject the seller's offer and go on.

Market conditions will play a role in how aggressively we negotiate the deal. We'll also work within your budget. And at the end of the day, we'll create a contract that works well for you.

Step 7 – Get a loan
Once the contract is signed, you'll start working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. It shouldn't take much time at all if you've been pre-approved, but you'll need to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll sort out all the property information your lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) of your closing costs from your mortgage lender within three days of accepting your application. The estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements order that it has to include all closing costs and be within a close range of accuracy, and I'll review the estimate and let you know if everything looks adequate.

Then we'll close on your house. This will most likely occur at a title company or escrow office and should be a smooth and relaxing occasion.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! It's time to move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, simply contact me at (740)681-1463 or e-mail me at .

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