Are you contemplating buying your new home?

Purchasing a home can be stressful for a lot of people, but with some planning ahead of time, it isn't too difficult. So you know exactly what to expect, I like to furnish my buyers with an outline of the entire deal. Below are my nine steps to buying a home.

Step 1 – Prepare to buy a home
There are several things you need to do prior to beginning your home search. You'll want to assemble a check list of features you need, plan for what neighborhoods you'd like to live in, and start planning around your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than or around 1/3 of your net monthly income is a good rule to adhere to.

Step 2 – Talk to Rich Riley, Your Real Estate Agent
This is where I can help. We'll plan a time to meet so we can talk about why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your upcoming plans. We'll discuss the mortgage industry, other economic factors that could potentially affect your buying decision today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and schools in area.

I'll also help you start the loan process. There are some great mortgage professionals, and I partner with a lot of them, so you're in great hands. They can help you determine which type of loan is best for you, as well as help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Start looking for a house
After we meet, I'll begin finding available homes on the market that suit your needs. I'll preview many of the houses and eliminate the duds, and then we'll schedule appointments to view the houses whenever it's convenient for you.

When we tour houses, I'll show you the positive features and bad ones. I'll even ask you to point out what things you like and dislike. It's pretty common for buyers to amend their wish list as we view homes and some items become more necessary than others. If that's the case, I'll look through all the listings once more and trim it down to the home you've been wishing for.

Step 4 – Get a grasp of the market
Your agent's awareness of the Raleigh home market is an imperative agent in your home search. And I assure you I'm mindful of all the neighborhoods and schools, and I can alert you to some neighborhoods are "hot" and warrant immediate action and the ones that are "cool" and allow for careful consideration.

As we view houses, I'll make sure to communicate when the seller's asking price has room for negotiation and also when I believe the house is "priced to sell." Be mindful and make sure you ask your agent plenty of questions, as any real estate agent will claim to know the housing market. If it seems like they don't know everything, just call me at (919)889-3789 or e-mail me at, and I'll be happy to answer any questions you have. My understanding of the market will help you stay a step above the rest through the entire process.

Step 5 – Find the home you've been waiting for
I'm sure we'll find the home of your dreams, and when we do, I'll precisely develop your purchase offer. The offer will be written keeping your needs in mind. Whenever necessary, I never forget to make contracts contingent upon items like obtaining financing and the results of the home inspection.

Let First Place Real Estate Group guide you through finding your dream home in Raleigh Upon submitting your purchase offer, most likely you'll want to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit submitted to the home seller to secure an offer to purchase the property, and it's usually applied to the closing costs. If the seller accepts your offer, we should close on the property within 30 to 60 days after. This allows plenty of time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
Unfortunately most contracts aren't closed on the first offer, and it's pretty common to receive a counter offer. Don't let this alarm you. We'll talk over whether or not to take the counter offer, present our own counter offer, or reject the seller's offer and move on.

Market conditions determine how aggressively we negotiate the deal. We'll also work within your financing constraints. And at the end of the day, we'll formulate a deal that's best for you.

Step 7 – Get your loan
Upon completing the contract, you'll begin working with your lender to close the loan. It shouldn't take very long at all if you're pre-approved, but you'll want to keep in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll look after all the property information your mortgage lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) detailing your closing costs from your mortgage lender within three days of taking your application. This estimate rests on the loan amount, and RESPA requirements require that it has to contain all closing costs and fall within a precise range of accuracy. I'll review the estimate and let you know if it all looks good.

Then we'll close on your home. This will most likely take place at a title company or escrow office and will probably be a smooth and pleasant event.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! It's time to move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything or have any questions, make sure you call me at (919)889-3789