The Complete Home Buying Process
We understand that real estate transactions are probably the biggest monetary transactions that most people make in their entire lives. Buying a home can be stressful, time consuming, and sometimes confusing. It makes sense to employ the best agent and the best company to assist you. With North Beach Realty you have over 30 years of experience at your disposal. We have agents on duty daily to serve you. Our full-time real estate agents are devoted to making your Myrtle Beach Real Estate dreams come true. Follow these steps to a successful purchase:
1) Hire a Buyer’s Agent
- A buyer’s agent will represent only you and have a fiduciary responsibility to look out for your best interests.
- Buyer’s agents may ask you to sign a buyer’s broker agreement, but it is the seller who pays the commission.
- Interview agents until you find an agent you trust and with whom you feel comfortable.
2) Get Prequalified / Preapproved
- Order a free credit report online and correct mistakes, if any.
- Ask your agent for a referral to a mortgage broker, but also compare rates offered by your own bank and / or credit union.
- Ask the lender to give you a loan preapproval letter, which means it will verify your income and pull a credit report.
- Determine your maximum loan amount, but choose only a mortgage type that you understand and a payment level with which you feel comfortable, which may very well be less than the maximum for which you are approved.
3) Look at Homes for Sale
- Narrow your search to those homes that fit your exact parameters to find that perfect home.
- Ask your agent to give you MLS print-outs of comparable sales in your targeted neighborhood.
- Observe open house etiquette.
- Tell your agent which online home listings you are interested in previewing and ask for additional input.
4) Write a Purchase Offer
- Select a home offer price based on the amount you feel a seller will accept or counter.
- If you are considering a lowball offer, ask your agent to substantiate this price for you.
- Prepare for multiple offers if the home is considered desirable in a hot location.
- If your offer is rejected, ask your agent to explain why and don’t repeat that mistake with your next offer.
5) Negotiate and Write Counter Offers
- Expect the seller to issue a counter offer.
- If the seller counters at full price, continue to negotiate.
6) Make an Earnest Money Deposit
- When your offer is accepted, deposit your earnest money check with the appropriate party.
- Do not ever make your check payable to the seller.
- Your offer should contain contingencies that will return your earnest money deposit to you if you cancel the contract.
7) Comply With Lender Requirements
- Lenders may ask for additional information.
- Do not make home buying mistakes such as altering your financial situation just before and during this process.
- When the file is complete, the lender will submit it for final underwriter approval.
8) Approve Seller Disclosures
- Read and question items you do not understand on the Seller Property Questionnaire, natural hazard report, pest inspection, and other documents such as a preliminary title policy.
- Realize you have 10 days to cancel if lead paint is a health hazard.
- Read every document in its entirety; ask questions about all seller disclosures.
9) Order Homeowner’s Insurance Policy
- Order your homeowner’s insurance early.
- Sometimes previous claims by a home owner can make it difficult to get insurance.
- Get replacement coverage.
10) Conduct Home Inspection
- Hire a reputable home inspector.
- Review the inspection report and ask questions if anything is unclear.
11) Issue Request for Repair
- If the home inspection turns up health and safety issues, issue a request for repair by asking the seller to address those issues or give you a credit for them.
- Realize no home is perfect, and the inspector will find faults.
- Be reasonable.
12) Remove Contingencies
- Make sure your loan is firm and the appraisal is acceptable before removing your loan contingency.
- If you do not remove contingencies, the seller can issue a request to perform and then cancel the contract, on top of demanding your deposit.
13) Do Final Walk-Through
- Do not pass up doing a final walk-through.
- Inspect the property to make sure it’s in the same condition as when you agreed to buy it.
- If you find a serious issue, address it now before you close.
- Bring a valid picture ID.
- Bring a certified check.
- Consider asking your bank to wire the funds, saving you the hassle of waiting in line at the bank.
- Your property deed will be recorded in the public records.
- The Attorney will notify you and your agent when it records.
- After recordation, unless your contract specifies otherwise, the property is yours — change the locks immediately.