You dreamed it. You pictured it. You planned for it. You believed it, and now the time has come. You are buying a new house, and you have made an offer on a home. Now what?! What action is required next? How long do you have before the possibility of the offer being withdrawn? I’m going to share with you the process of what needs to happen after you make an offer on a home.
Making Your Offer
Once your offer has been made, the seller has a few options to respond.
1. Accept your proposition with the existing circumstances
2. Decline your offer and respond with a counteroffer
3. Reject your offer, in written form or by not responding at all
Hopefully the seller of the home will accept your first offer, but this isn’t always the case. Many times when a counter-offer is received, it is a great time to come to a deal since the seller is willing to negotiate. If their counter is appealing enough, it could be a great time to accept the deal and move on to the next step.
Deciding on Financing
If you are planning on using a mortgage or other borrowing product, your next step would be to apply for that loan. Depending on your credit, you may be pre-approved! If not, meet with a few other lenders and examine their loan options. Think about your optimal monthly payment when discussing your purchase with the lenders, and have them help you achieve that payment. Be vigilant with finding the right lender, it can save you thousands.
Purchasing a home will most likely big your biggest investment. Hiring a competent individual for a couple of hundred dollars or a little more to investigate your future residence may save you thousands of dollars on unnecessary and unexpected repairs in the long run. Seek a certified home inspector of your choice. An inspector may be recommended to you if you are working with a buyer’s agent. The inspector will arrange an appointment that fits into your schedule. Within 10 days after your offer was accepted is the inspection period and the inspection must be done during this time frame. Depending on the inspection report, the potential buyer will need to make some decisions. You must determine if the repairs are worth the value of the home or will it be a loss in the end? Will the repairs maintain long enough for the duration of your planned residency?
If during the home inspection you find damages that are unacceptable, you may request that the seller fix specific items. You must notify in writing your requests for the repairs along with a copy of the inspector’s report. The seller may or may not agree to fix the requested repairs, depending on the original agreement. This can be a good time to negotiate some of the worst issues (if there are any) so that the seller can repair them before you move in.
During the Contract Period
Once you have obtained your preferred financing all parties involved must be prepared with their end of things by the closing date. This is a time to finish any other tasks such as lead or mold inspections, appraisals, insurance inspections, etc. It also gives the seller a limited amount of time to complete any repairs necessary to the agreement and pack their things to move out. This can become a frustrating time if you are not patient. Though you have found your dream home and had an offer accepted, it’s important to be cooperative with all parties involved. This way you can ensure that you move in on time.
When do you receive the keys? Each transaction is different when a buyer closes a home. Unfortunately, signing papers doesn’t necessarily establish the closing. There are many individuals working behind the scenes scanning over every form to make sure all is set into place for the sale to be finalized. With some states, it’s not official until the county has entered the title. Your realtor should be up-to-date with the laws and can walk you through this process. All-in-all, have patience throughout this exhausting experience because your hard work will be an accomplishment that you will remember from years on.
Enjoy your new home!