The Buying Process
- Get Pre=Qualified
Austin is one of the most competitive housing markets in the country, so its essential that you are prepared before you start looking at homes. We will connect you with trusted local lenders that will provide you with the best loan program available for you and they will provide you with a “pre-qualified letter” that lets sellers know that you can buy their home. Now if you decide to make an offer, you’ll be taken seriously as a buyer!
2. Narrow It Down
There are thousands of homes on the market at any given time in Austin, so it can be very frustrating, as a buyer, not to have a clear idea of what you’re looking for. Your Realtor will discuss with you all of your wants and needs in a home, along with your budget, to determine what areas of Austin to focus the home search. This will save a lot of time and allow you to take advantage of the best opportunities out there.
After narrowing it down, your Realtor will put together a list of homes and schedule showings for you. This is the fun part! After viewing your options, you’ll have a much better idea of what your money can buy and know what a good deal looks like in the current market. Hopefully, you’ll find a home you want!
Your Realtor will research the market, comparable properties, and the specific details of the home you want to buy to determine the best way to move forward with an offer. In Austin, it’s very common for a desirable home to have multiple offers from several buyers, so you’ll need to rely on your Realtor to put together a competitive offer without you paying too much. Experienced Realtors are expert negotiators and represent your best interest in the transaction, so its important to work with one you trust.
5. Inspection & Appraisal
After your offer is accepted, your Realtor will schedule a home inspection for you. The inspection is intended to reveal any major issues with the home’s appliances, roofing, foundation, electrical system, plumbing, windows, and many other parts of the home the inspector finds that may require repairs or servicing. You can use the inspection report to determine if you would like to move forward with the purchase and/or possibly negotiate further with the seller on some of the inspection items. After the inspection period, the next hurdle before closing is the appraisal. Your lender will use the appraised value determined by a licensed appraiser for your maximum loan amount. If the appraised value meets the contract sales price amount, then you’re ready to close!
Your Realtor will schedule a closing time for you with the title company and will have been communicating with your lender for over month, at this point, to ensure a smooth closing. At closing, the title company will collect your cash-to-close amount, which is the total amount you are required to pay (i.e. down payment, closing costs) and you will sign several closing documents that will be explained in detail by your closing officer. After you finish signing, the final step will be funding. The lender must deliver your loan funds to the title company, then the title co will distribute the funds to the seller and you’ll be able to pick up the keys to your new home!
Do you need a Realtor to buy a home in Austin?
Absolutely. Buying a home without a professional Realtor is not a good idea at all. Although attempts have been made to simplify the home buying process, the fact is that it just isn’t that simple and never will be. The information and assistance that a Realtor provides you during the process is invaluable. He/she will streamline the search by saving you time, provide you with useful intel on the neighborhoods (like upcoming developments) that may affect the home’s value, save you thousands by negotiating the best price possible, oversee the inspection and negotiate repairs or concessions, represent your interests in the transaction, handle the contract for you, connect you with good lenders to get the best loan program and rates available, communicate with the title company on your behalf, walk you through the closing process, and then be available after closing for all of your questions about homeownership. Buyers that don’t use a Realtor are at a disadvantage, spend more money and time, expose themselves to more risk, and have a more frustrating experience overall than buyers who use one.. A Realtor is absolutely necessary in every real estate transaction and you are in expert hands at Ford Shanley Real Estate.