By Kalista Mefford – Keller Williams Realty
Step 1: Get Pre-Approved
Before you begin your home search you it is important to get pre-approved for a mortgage loan. As an international buyer this process means finding the right loan product. The International Investors Mortgage team can help you select the right mortgage program from among their 7 mortgage options. Once you have a loan program determined you can move on to step 2.
Step 2: Find a Real Estate Agent
It is important to have a representative when you purchase a home. Your agent will help you to locate property, negotiate a contract, and arrange closing. Because buying a home is an extremely personal experience, it is important that there is a comfort level between you and your agent. Your agent should be someone you like, trust, and respect, and who has a deep knowledge of the real estate market. At IIM we like to have full service, so if you would like we can arrange for you to be partnered with a qualified agent at Keller Williams. Once you have been partnered with an agent you are ready for step 3.
Step 3: Find your home or Investment
At this stage of the game, you are ready to begin your home search. Here’s what you can expect to do: Review Listings – Your agent will present you with available listings. Beyond price and property attributes, pay close attention to data like property taxes, market time, and home owner association fees.
View Properties – Your agent will schedule showings and accompany you during this process. Open Houses – If you’re attending open houses without your agent, be sure to mention that you are represented by an agent. This will save you from being inundated with calls from other agents trying to represent you.
Compare Properties – Provide candid feedback to your agent after every listing you see so he or she will be able to adjust their parameters in order to present you with alternatives. When you find a home that suits your needs, your agent will prepare a Comparative Market Analysis (or CMA) to help you formulate your offer.
Once you have seen a home that meets all your needs your ready for step 4.
Step 4: Making an Offer to Buy
When you find a home, it’s important to act quickly and make an educated offer based on the strategy you and your agent have discussed. Your agent will draw up a contract that includes your offer price and other terms and contingencies.
Step 5: Contract to Close
Once your offer has been officially accepted by the seller, there are many timelines to be met during the contract to close period. Your agent will guide you through the process to ensure all timelines are met. Home inspection: The inspection period is your time to evaluate the home without the influence of anyone who benefits financially from the purchase. Your licensed home inspector is the unbiased expert on the condition of the property.
Loan Obligations: There are a number of loan obligations that you will work on with your lender during this period from making an application for the loan to securing homeowners insurance.
Appraisal: Your lender must know whether the house you are interested in buying is worth the amount you are willing to spend. They will hire an independent third-party appraiser to provide a written estimate of a property’s market value.
Step 6: Closing Day
Closing day marks the end of your home-buying process and the beginning of a new journey! To make sure your closing goes smoothly, you should bring proof of wire transfer for closing costs and down payment, photo IDs, and your citizenship paperwork. Transfer of title moves ownership of the property from the seller to you. The two events that make this happen are:
Delivery of the buyer’s funds – These are the funds provided by your lender in the amount of the loan. Delivery of the deed – A deed is the document that transfers ownership of real estate. The deed names the seller and buyer, gives a legal description of the property, and contains the notarized signatures of the seller and witnesses.
Step 7: After Closing
After closing, it’s a good idea to keep an eye on interest rates and your credit report. If rates go down, and you have established credit in the united states you may be able to save money by refinancing. International Investors Mortgage will be happy to answer any questions you have about refinancing or investing in more properties.
If you have any questions about real estate, reach out to Kalista Mefford with Keller Williams Realty.