Buying or selling a home in Oil City?

With some up-front planning, buying a home isn't all that hard, but the event can be stressful for many people. I like to supply buyers with an outline of the entire deal so they'll know exactly what to expect. Here are my nine steps to buying a home. When you're ready to get started, simply contact me here or e-mail me at . I'm glad to address questions you have regarding this information.

Step 1 – Get ready to purchase a home
Prior to starting your home search, there are many things you need to do. You'll want to put together a checklist of must-have features, get a feel for what neighborhoods you want to live in, and begin planning your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than 1/3 of your monthly income is a good rule of thumb to adhere to.

Step 2 – Communicate with a real estate agent in Oil City
This is where I come in. I'd be more than happy to plan a time to get together with you and communicate with you about your real estate needs and get an idea of your future plans. We'll talk about neighborhoods, school districts in the Oil City area, the mortgage industry, and any other economic factors that may affect your buying decision today or in the future.

I can also assist you in getting started on your loan. There are some excellent mortgage professionals in Oil City, and I partner with a lot of them, so you're in great hands. They'll assist you with choosing which type of loan is best for you and help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Start your home search
After we meet for the first time, I'll begin searching for available homes on the market that are great for you. I'll research many of the houses and remove the bad ones, and then we'll set up appointments to tour the houses when it's convenient for you.

As we view homes, I'll call attention to positive features, as well as bad ones. And I'll ask you to point out what things you like and dislike. It's pretty common for buyers to amend their must-have list as we view houses and some things become far more substantial than others. If such is the case, I'll go back through the listings another time and narrow it down to the house you've been wishing for.

Step 4 – Know the market
An agent's knowledge of the Oil City home market is an essential aspect in your house search. And I assure you I'm informed of all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I will communicate which areas are "hot" and demand immediate action and others that are "cold" and allow for thoughtful analysis.

As we view houses, I'll let you know if the seller's asking price has room for negotiation or if I believe the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be on guard and make sure you ask plenty of questions, as any real estate agent in Oil City will claim to understand the housing market. If it doesn't seem like they know everything, contact me at (814) 677-2326 or e-mail me at , and I'll be happy to answer any questions you may have. My market expertise will help you stay a step ahead through the entire process.

Step 5 – Find the house you've been looking for
I'm positive we'll find your dream house in the Oil City area. When we do, I'll thoroughly develop your purchase offer. The offer will be made to fit your needs and the home. We'll include a lot of contingencies, such as acquiring financing, completing the home inspection, and a clean title.

When sending in your offer, you'll probably need to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit made to the seller to secure the offer to buy the property and is most often applied to the cost of closing. If the offer is accepted, we should close on the home within 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows ample time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
Unfortunately most deals aren't closed on the initial offer – it's widely common to receive a counter offer. Don't let it discourage you. We'll figure out whether or not to consent to the counter offer, submit our own counter offer, or refuse the seller's offer and go on.

How aggressively we negotiate the deal depends on market conditions. We'll also work within your budget. And at the end of the day, we'll create a contract that's best for you.

Step 7 – Obtain your loan
Upon completing the deal, you'll begin working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. This won't be a long process at all if you're already pre-qualified, but you need to stay 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 Loan Estimate (LE) of your closing costs from your lender within three days of accepting your loan application. This estimate is formed from the loan amount. RESPA requirements dictate that it has to include all closing costs and be within a tight range of accuracy, and I'll analyze the estimate and let you know if it all looks adequate.

Then it's time to close on your home. This will likely take place at a title company or escrow office and will most likely be a smooth and relaxed event.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, just call me at (814) 677-2326 or e-mail me at .

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