So, are you ready to buy a house? Let’s talk today about what you need to know and do to be prepared to buy when you find your dream home. There’s more to buying than falling in love with a home, and I’m here to guide you through every step of the process. 


Step one is to get pre qualified. You’ll want a reputable lender, preferably a local one. Listing agents like to see a pre qualification from a lender that they are familiar with. This letter says that you have done all your pre-home buying home work, and that your loan is looking good. You know your price range and your required downpayment. You are a Qualified Buyer.  


Just a quick side note here- with interest rates changing make sure that you know what your budget is according to the rate. If you get qualified today and the rates change in the next 30/45 days, your budget could change as well. This is another reason to work with a reputable lender. They can answer all your questions about rates and their effects on your budget.


Next, start talking to your agent about how your offer needs to look. Are we in a competitive offer situation, or is there room for some negotiation? How much earnest money should you put up?  Most sellers really like to see about one percent of the sales price, and as a buyer's agent that's what I like to recommend to my buyers. 


I always recommend my buyers do a home inspection on a pre-existing home. In a highly competitive market, you might consider a pass/fail inspection.  Sellers really get nervous about inspections and the inspector is going to find every loose toilet and drippy faucet. These items are typically not a very big deal, but we still want the inspector to let us know about them. While we don’t want the seller to feel like we are picking their home apart, we do want to make sure that the big items like structural concerns, roof concerns, HVAC,  heavy mechanicals that are expensive to repair or replace are addressed. With a pass/fail inspection, essentially we're going to look at it and inspect it and if it's major we have the right to terminate and walk away but if it's not we're going to accept the property in its current condition.


What about occupancy? In our area, it’s customary that buyer’s take possession (occupancy ) of the home on closing day.  This can be very stressful for sellers, so you might consider giving them a few extra days in the home AFTER closing to reduce that stress, as well as “sweeten the deal.” For example, if we close on Friday, let them have the weekend to move out. 


I can help you with these concerns, as well as all things Real Estate. I know when there is room in the market for negotiations, as well as when we need to come in with a strong offer-sometimes even above asking price. 


We can work together to help you purchase the home of your dreams! 



If you have any questions about this or anything else in the real estate process just give me a call. I’m Alan Castleman with Hickman Realty Group, and I’m here to help you!







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