“NEVER FEAR… AGENT VAL IS HERE!” Hopefully, by the time you finish reading this page, you’ll feel free of your fears and ready to find your dream home. ~Val~
Here are a few common “Fear Factors” when considering a home purchase. I’ll address each one…
- Do I qualify?
- Will I find the right home?
- When is the right time to buy?
- How do I make an offer?
- What if I change my mind AFTER I make my offer?
- Am I buying a “Money Pit?”
- Am I offering too much for the home of my dreams?
- What if I don’t have thousands of dollars for closing?
Let’s get started!
“DO I QUALIFY?”
One piece of information to remember: if you don’t qualify today, we can help get you qualified soon! So, don’t worry and don’t allow the fear of qualifying keep you from even trying. I’ve partnered with Preferred Lenders who not only offer competitive rates and excellent home loan programs, but they can also create game plans for buyers who need a little more time to qualify.
HOME LOANS AVAILABLE FOR:
- Military Veterans & Active Duty
- First Responders
- First-Time Home Buyers
- Recent College Graduates
- W-2 Employees
- Wage + Tip Earners
- Independent Contractors
- Foreign Nationals
Select a Lender you are comfortable with and get Pre-Approved. The Loan Officer you select will partner with your REALTOR® to get you into your dream home. Finding out if you qualify is easy. We understand that waiting for the “Yes” or “No” can be the gut wrenching part.
BE PREPARED: Here’s what lenders are looking for:
- FICO Credit Score (should be at least a 620* mid-score for the best rates)
- Judgments/Liens/Bankruptcies on your Credit Report (we believe in 2nd chances)
- Income/Employment Verification
- Assets (Savings accounts, 401K, etc…)
Most lenders can issue a pre-qualification or pre-approval within 48 hours.
*Credit Score minimums vary by lender.
WILL I FIND THE RIGHT HOME?
YES YOU WILL! How long will it take you? That depends on how selective you are. There are thousands of homes for sale in and around the Greater San Antonio area. Once you start narrowing down your favorite features, your list of homes will shrink to a manageable size. The more flexible you are about house features, price and/or location, the more options you’ll have.
How much will it cost to hire a REALTOR®? Speaking for myself, I work strictly for commission from Sellers and their Agents. If you are building a home, my commission is paid directly from the Builder! This is all ready pre-arranged and does NOT affect your purchase price. I also do not charge upfront fees to represent a buyer, to show homes, or to negotiate offers.
WHEN IS THE RIGHT TIME TO BUY?
Short and simple: any time is the right time if you’re ready to make the commitment. A successful REALTOR® can help you find the BEST deal in any type of housing market.
HOW DO I MAKE AN OFFER?
X_______________ (just sign here) j/k!
Making a GREAT and APPEALING offer takes some serious strategy. Sure it’s a matter of filling in blanks, but it depends on what’s delicately entered in those blanks that will determine whether or not you get that house you’ve been tossing and turning for.
THE KEY FACTORS IN AN OFFER:
- Offer Price
- Down Payment
- Earnest Money
- Title Policy
- Home Protection Plan
- Closing Costs
- Closing Date
- Financing Type
- Option Period and Option Fee
All of these things, to name a few, can make or break a deal. Having a Buyer’s Agent who knows today’s Real Estate Market, will help you put together “an offer they can’t refuse!”
WHAT IF I CHANGE MY MIND AFTER I MAKE MY OFFER?
If you’re working with a REALTOR® who’s looking out for your best interest, chances are you’ll be offered an “Option Period.” When making an initial offer, be sure to include an Option Period (especially if you are needing a few more days to be certain of your decision).
What’s an Option Period? An option period is a period in which a Buyer is granted the right to terminate a purchase contract for ANY given reason. An option period can be one day, seven days, ten days – it’s completely negotiable. The Buyer offers the Seller a sum of money (about $25 a day or so) for the unrestricted right to walk away. Often, the Option Period is used (by the Buyer) to have inspections, talk to lenders or just to talk with family and/or friends. If the inspection is good, the lender says “you’re qualified,” and parents say “go for it,” the option period expires and the Buyer moves forward toward closing!
AM I BUYING A MONEY PIT?
Most of us have seen that absolutely funny movie with Tom Hanks and Shelley Long… “The Money Pit!” They buy their dream home, and days later it begins to fall apart… piece, by piece, by piece… It’s NOT funny in real life, but the flick is hilarious!
So, how do we avoid money pits? Hire a Home Inspector. During your “Option Period” (as mentioned above), have the home inspected. Within two hours (more or less), you’ll know what works and doesn’t work. Also, during your option period, negotiate repairs with the Sellers so you won’t have to worry about repairs after you move in!
“Should I Inspect New Home Construction?” YES… INSPECT IT! If you hire a private inspector, most builders will address the items “in need of repair” before closing day. Don’t let the builder convince you to settle for their “in-house” property inspector. Oh, and don’t fall for the, “we’ll fix it after you sign” trick. The V.I.P. treatment you get before you close will disappear when you sign and close.
AM I OFFERING TOO MUCH FOR THE HOME OF MY DREAMS?
Everyone wants the BIG bargain and no one wants to pay more than something is worth. How do we avoid overpaying for a home? First, we start with a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA). Once you find that fantastic home, ask your REALTOR® for a CMA. The CMA will help you determine what the Fair Market Value is for the property. If the house you want to buy is over-priced or under-priced, you’ll notice right away.
ACTUAL PROPERTY VALUE is determined with an Appraisal. While you’re under contract, and just before closing, your Mortgage Lender will hire an Appraiser to determine the actual Appraised Value of the property. An Appraisal is a more detailed report than a CMA. The Appraisal is required by the Mortgage Company to make sure they are not lending more than the house is worth.
WHAT IF I DON’T HAVE THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS FOR CLOSING?
If you’re a first-time home buyer, chances are you won’t NEED thousands of dollars for closing. There are first-time home buyer programs that pay for closing costs AND down payments. Don’t get me wrong, you’ll need some cash. You’ll need an amount close to what you’d pay to sign a new lease agreement with an apartment complex. To help give you an idea, here’s a “Guide to Closing Costs.”
HOME-BUYING FEAR FACTORS… It’s not so scary, right? Do the following TWO things ahead of time and your home buying process will be smooth sailing:
- Hire a REALTOR® who will represent YOU during your house hunt, negotiations, and closing.
- Get Pre-Approved before you make any offers. Having a pre-approval letter in your hands is like house-hunting with money in your pocket!
How do you feel? Are you ready? Let’s do this!
Call/text Val to get started right away.
If you have general real estate questions, I’m always on-call. Whether you’re a Home Buyer, Home Seller or a Tenant… I’ll gladly tailor my service to suit your needs. ~Agent Val, Your Trusted Real Estate Advisor~