Buying with 616 REALTY


Achieving Homeownership: Your Step-by-Step Guide

Buying a home, whether your first or tenth, is a monumental life decision. Navigating the process can feel overwhelming, but fear not! This comprehensive guide breaks down the essential steps, empowering you to make informed choices and find your perfect haven.

Step 1

Laying the Groundwork

  1. Define your needs & budget: Assess your lifestyle, family size, and financial situation to determine your ideal home type and price range.
  2. Get pre-approved for a mortgage: This critical step solidifies your budget and strengthens your position as a serious buyer. We always suggest working with a local lender. In fact our agents work with the best and would love to help connect you with a lender who will work for you!
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Step 2

Find a Professional REALTOR®

Buying or selling a home can be overwhelming, from navigating a competitive market to understanding complicated contracts. At 616 REALTY our agents use their expertise to guide you through the search, negotiations, and legalities, ensuring a smooth transaction. Ready to make your move with confidence? Contact 616 REALTY today and discover the difference a trusted REALTOR® can make!

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Step 3

Embarking on the Search

  1. Craft your wish list: Prioritize must-have features and desired amenities to streamline your search. Our agents will create a personalized home search that sends houses right to your inbox.
  2. Leverage agent expertise: Explore listings during private showings and let your agent curate options that best match your criteria.
Step 4

Making an Offer

Your agent will research comparable properties and use their understanding of market value to help you make a competitive and informed offer. Once sent to the listing agent the sellers can accept, negotiate, or turn down your offer. If negotiations are necessary, our agents will empower you and navigate this crucial step, securing the best price and terms.

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Step 5

Your Offer is Accepted

During this period, the home inspection, appraisal, title insurance, and loan approval will be completed:

  • Home inspection: Home inspections help identify any potential issues and gain peace of mind before finalizing the purchase.
  • Appraisal: During the appraisal, a qualified appraiser will create a report based on an in-person inspection, research into recent sales of similar properties, current market trends, and the details of the home, including its size, condition, floor plan, and amenities.
  • Title insurance: Think of it as protection against hidden ownership claims on your dream home. Title insurance companies research the property's history to ensure you receive clear title.
  • Loan approval: Once your full loan application has been submitted, the mortgage processing stage begins. For you, the buyer, this is mostly a waiting period.
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Step 6

You’ve Made it to Closing

Congratulations on reaching the finish line of your home-buying journey! Closing day can be exciting and slightly overwhelming, so here's a breakdown of what to expect at closing:

  • Closing costs: Be prepared with an itemized list of your closing costs, typically around 3% of the purchase price if you're escrowing your taxes. 
  • Official statement: You'll receive an official statement outlining all charges before your appointment.
  • Cashier's check: Ensure you have a cashier's check for the exact closing cost amount, payable to the title company.
  • Valid ID: Don't forget your driver's license, passport, or other government-issued identification.

The typical timeline from offer to closing is approximately 30-40 days.

Buying a home is an exciting yet complex process, filled with crucial decisions that impact your future. While independent research is key, remember: you don't have to navigate this journey alone! Your real estate agent is your trusted partner and valuable resource throughout every step. Stay connected with your agent, ask questions, and leverage their expertise throughout the process.


Common Questions

Determining your affordability depends on your income, debts, credit score, and desired down payment. We recommend securing pre-approval from a mortgage lender to understand your budget.

We have a comprehensive listings database that you can search by location, price range, property type, and other criteria. We also offer personalized home search alerts to notify you when new listings matching your preferences become available.

Absolutely! We can discuss your needs and preferences, such as desired location, number of bedrooms, size, and amenities. We can also provide you with valuable resources like neighborhood guides and market reports to help you make an informed decision.

Earnest deposit: Be prepared for a good faith deposit upon offer acceptance. This amount, typically 1-3% of the purchase price, demonstrates your seriousness and secures the property during the inspection period. If you back out without justified reason after the inspection period, you forfeit the deposit. However, you have the right to cancel based on major issues discovered during the inspection, with the deposit refunded.

Home inspection: Invest in a professional home inspection. Expect costs ranging from $400 to $500 or more, depending on the property size and complexity. This crucial step unveils potential issues and empowers you to negotiate repairs or adjust your offer.

Additional Costs:

Closing costs: Factor in these, covering title insurance, appraisals, taxes, and other fees, typically amounting to 2-3% of the purchase price.

Moving expenses: Budget for packing, transportation, and potential temporary housing needs.

Homeownership costs: Remember ongoing expenses like property taxes, insurance, and maintenance.

Buying a home with bad credit may seem daunting, akin to scaling Mount Everest. But fear not! Here's a practical guide to help you on your journey:

  1. Face the challenge: Bad credit is a hurdle, not a roadblock. Understand there are alternative financing options available, though no quick fixes exist.

  2. Aim for improvement: While a perfect score isn't mandatory, targeting a credit score of 630+ expands your loan choices and improves interest rates. Time is key—efforts to boost your score, even over a year, can yield significant results.

  3. Seek guidance: Work with a lender or credit counselor to craft a personalized credit repair plan. They'll assist in disputing errors, managing debt, and establishing positive payment history.

  4. Explore options: FHA loans, tailored for lower credit scores (minimum 580), offer more flexibility. Veterans and active-duty military personnel may benefit from VA loans, featuring no down payment requirement and flexible credit thresholds.

  5. Be honest: Transparency with your lender builds trust and enables them to explore suitable options for you.

  6. Stay connected: Communication is vital. Stay engaged with your lender, ask questions, and actively participate in finding solutions.

  7. Plan for the unexpected: Have contingencies in place for unforeseen expenses or delays in credit score improvement.

Buying a home with bad credit demands proactive effort and informed choices. This guide equips you to navigate the process confidently, explore realistic options, and realize your dream of homeownership.

A down payment is a portion of the purchase price paid upfront. While a larger down payment reduces monthly mortgage payments and closing costs, it's not always mandatory. We can discuss your options and recommend the best approach for your situation.

Earnest money is a deposit made by the buyer to demonstrate their commitment to purchasing the property. The amount varies but is typically around 1% to 3% of the purchase price. Offering earnest money shows sellers that you're serious about the transaction.

Closing costs are fees associated with the purchase of a home, typically including loan origination fees, title insurance, and property taxes. We can provide you with an estimated closing cost statement to help you plan your finances.

 The timeline for buying a home can vary depending on factors such as market conditions, financing, and the complexity of the transaction. On average, it takes about 30 to 45 days from the time an offer is accepted to closing, but it can be shorter or longer depending on circumstances.


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