Buying a house is an exciting, but very detailed process. There are several steps involved that will take time, effort, and a budget. At Armstrong, our agents want to ensure that you have everything you need to make a smooth transition into buying a new home. Here are the seven essential steps to buying a new home.
Step One: Check Your Credit Score
When buying a home, you will need to take out a mortgage or comparable loan. Credit scores range from approximately 300 to 850, and the higher your score, the better the loan you’ll qualify for. A credit score of 700 or above is considered “good;” most credit scores fall between 600 and 750. There are several websites where you can check your credit for free, such as Annual Credit Report or Credit Karma. If there are any outstanding bills holding you back, pay them off or make payments where you can to help improve your credit.
Step Two: Know How Much You Can Afford
Lenders recommend that the search for homes be narrowed to those that cost no more than three to five times their annual household income, with a 20% down payment. When making this decision you should consider your current financial situation and any debt that you have. The average down payment ranges from 3%-20%, based on the type of home loan you choose, as well as the type of property you are buying.
Step Three: Find the Right Real Estate Agent
A real estate agent will be able to answer all of your questions, as well as guide you through the entire process. Real estate agents are trained professionals who can assist with marketing, pricing, negotiation, inspections, property community, and much more. At Armstrong, our team is familiar with the best areas in Nashville and will ensure you find your dream house without breaking the bank.
Step Four: Look for the Perfect Home
Choose the neighborhood that is best for you and start looking at homes for sale. Our website lets you conveniently browse homes in specific neighborhoods, and even create your own search area. Our experienced agents will also assist your search for the perfect home. While looking at homes, prepare a list of your “must-haves” in a house: number of bedrooms/bathrooms, big backyard for pets, cabinet/closet space – the list goes on. Check out the neighborhood and surroundings as well. How long is the commute to work? Is there a grocery store near by? Is there residential parking? Your real estate agent will be able to answer these questions and more.
Step Five: Make an Offer
Once you have chosen your perfect home, the next step is to make an offer. Sellers typically price their homes high knowing that there will be negotiating involved. It is best to start at about 5% below the asking price. Your real estate agent can also provide you a list of what comparable homes in the area have sold for to better assist with the negotiating process. Once you receive an offer, this is not necessarily the final price. The buyer and seller are both allowed to make a counter-offer. However, it is best not to go back and forth too much. After the negotiation is complete and you have both agreed on a price, you will make a deposit on the home.
Step Six: Close on Your Home
At closing, you will complete the purchase of your new home. This will include the paperwork, signing documents, and finalizing your loans. It might take up to a week for your loan to be funded and to finalize your paperwork. Closing will also include some fees, such as: your down payment, title fees, appraisal fees, attorney fees, and inspection fees. Once the check is received and processed, you will receive the keys to your new home!
Step Seven: Move in to Your New Home
Congratulations, you are now a homeowner! Once you have closed the deal, it is time for you to move in. Start unpacking boxes and turning your house into a home. This is an exciting new chapter, so be sure to celebrate your new journey!
As realtors in Nashville, we want to help you with this exciting process; we don’t want you to feel overwhelmed. One of our real estate experts will help you through this checklist to find your dream home.
Our Armstrong Real Estate agents want to help you with the process of buying a home in Nashville. Click HERE to find the latest offerings in the hip neighborhood of Germantown. You will love this beautiful, scenic section of Nashville. Give us a call @ 615.807.0579 for questions!