If you need financing, it is in your best interest to get pre-approved for your mortgage loan. Your sales contract will be contingent upon your final loan approval, which typically takes about 30 days. Because the seller is assuming the risk by agreeing to this contingency, it is customary to accompany your offer with a pre-approval letter from your lender in order to show the seller that you are qualified to obtain the financing within the parameters specified in the contingency.
It is important to choose a lender who is experienced and trustworthy, as the loan approval process can be complicated. Work with an experienced lender that will guide you through the process from application through approval, and will keep you posted throughout the process, including your credit report, the property appraisal, final underwriting and conditions. Here are some experienced lenders who can help you that I have worked with for many years.
An easy way to educate yourself on current inventory is to attend weekend open houses. This is a convenient way to see many properties in a short amount of time. You can view the property as quickly or for as long as you like. I can email a complete list of open houses to you for any weekend. When you attend, please tell the hosting agent that you are working with me, and/or sign in as 'Client of Ed Watts'.
Searching for and viewing properties.
You can search for properties on the Multiple Listing Service. I can set up an account for you so that you see the same property details and photos that I see. You will also get automatic updates with any new listings and/or price changes within your search parameters. You may also prefer to search on other real estate websites as well. These websites download their information from the MLS, so by looking at listings on the MLS, you will see the information direct from the source.
If you want to see a property, just send me an email with the property addresses and some possible times and dates that you are available. It is very helpful to me if you give me 2 or 3 dates and time ranges that you are available, as well as at least two day's advance notice.
Representation and compensation.
Because I am compensated only in the event of a successful transaction I would greatly appreciate your cooperation and loyalty. I can provide information on any property, so instead of contacting another agent, please make inquiries only through me.
There is no fee to you, the buyer, for my services. The commission is typically divided four ways: between the seller’s agent and real estate comapny, and the buyer’s agent and real estate company. The seller pays a commission to their real estate company, who pays my company, who pays me. Even though I am compensated indirectly from the seller, I will represent you exclusively and I will be working only in your best interest.
The home inspection.
A professional inspection is a visual analysis of the building and its internal components to find potential problems. An inspection is an in depth look at the home and mechanical components. The inspection covers the physical structure as well as plumbing, heating, electrical, appliances, and other items.
The inspection should be done by a licensed professional home inspector who can spot potential problems that may not be apparent to the non-professional. The buyer hires and pays the inspector. Remember that you are buying used housing and it is to be expected that some components show signs of daily wear.
If problems are found, your inspector can often give you a rough estimate of the cost of repairs. The inspector can also advise you about the life expectancy of specific items so you can be prepared to cover replacement or repair costs, even though they may not be immediately necessary. You should accompany the inspector in order to learn more about your new home. Typically you will receive a detailed inspection report with photos within a day or two after the inspection takes place.
You are welcome to find a home inspector on your own, or feel free to contact one of the inspectors listed below. These are home inspectors that past clients of mine have hired and have been very satisfied with.