Do you have questions about real estate? Check out these 6 real estate tips for you, then contact our Buffalo lawyers to get started today.
1) The First Steps to Purchasing a Home
- As soon as you decide to purchase a home, reach out to a lender and obtain a preapproval or prequalification letter. The lender will perform a cursory analysis of your finances and draft a letter which generally states that you qualify for a mortgage up to a certain dollar amount. When you are ready to make an offer on a specific home, you will use that document to offer the seller a certain level of security that you’re able to afford that home.
- After you get your prequalification letter, you should ask the loan officer about the additional documents you’ll need to complete the application process and when you should get those documents to your lender.
- Next, select a realtor with whom you feel comfortable to assist you in viewing various homes, choosing a home on which to make an offer, and preparation of a real estate purchase contract on your behalf – at a price with which you are comfortable, and tendering that offer to the seller’s listing agent.
- Once you have entered into a contract, you will retain a real estate lawyer to assist you in completing the transaction. The attorney should speak with you about the details of your transaction and your needs, gather information about where you’re presently residing and whether you need to meet any specific deadlines for vacating those premises – and just make sure to protect you throughout the transaction. He will examine the property’s title, all sale documents, and all lender documents on your behalf, and then attend the closing with you to complete the real estate transaction.
2) The Mortgage Application Process
- As soon as a home inspection is conducted and the rider is executed, a property inspection addendum is completed. That is when the buyer can officially apply for their loan.
- Traditionally, the contract for sale and purchase specifies a number of days after completion of the required home inspection within which the buyer must apply for the loan – often, five days after the home inspection is satisfied.
- The buyer should immediately bring the application and any supporting documents to the loan officer.
3) The Mortgage Commitment Stage
- A mortgage commitment stage is a preliminary stage that follows the application and initial review by the bank through which they promise to lend you money under certain conditions, including a commitment to provide your financial information to the lender.
- The appraisal may still be outstanding– and that appraisal must be satisfactory. It will require proof that the seller is tendering a clear title to the buyer.
- The commitment letter, signed by the buyer, is sent back to the bank as a contract between the buyer and the bank.
4) Ready to Sell Your House? Here’s What You Need to Know
- When you consider selling your house, the first and foremost, thing to do is select a realtor with whom you are comfortable and discuss the necessary steps to begin the process.
- That realtor will gather information about recent comparable sales for you to consider as you and the realtor set an appropriate price at which to list your house.
- You should gather such important legal documents as the title search, survey, tax receipts, and mortgage statement you may have. Assemble a year’s worth of utility bills and give the information to your realtor. During open houses, that gives people an idea of what those costs might be associated if they decide to purchase your home.
- Determine if there are repairs to be completed before listing the house. You may want to put a fresh coat of paint on something or do other things to add curb appeal and maximize your home’s perceived value.
- You may also choose to speak with your attorney and gain an understanding of the real estate transaction itself before entering into a contract, during the contract, and what happens at the end of the transaction.
5) Buying and Selling a Home at the Same Time
- Selling one home and buying another creates a set of complexities that goes beyond those of a regular real estate transaction because two transactions must take place concurrently, following a mirrored path that allows both to close on the same day.
- It will be necessary to involve additional people because you now need to coordinate the efforts of attorneys for the seller and buyer involved with your sale, as well as those involved with your purchase.
- If that is impossible, you may have to consider obtaining early entry into the home you’re purchasing and completing that transaction on a separate day, or delaying your purchaser’s occupancy of the home you’re selling so that you can move out a day or two after closing.
- Early entry and post-closing occupancy can be tricky because everyone involved must agree. You essentially enter into a short-term lease agreement to cover the days of post-closing occupancy during which you no longer own the home.
6) The Appraisal Process
- Following your loan application, the lender will evaluate your finances to make sure you can repay the amount you’re borrowing, and make sure the property value meshes with the agreed-upon purchase price.
- If the house doesn’t appraise at a value high enough to correspond with the purchase price, the lender may not lend you the money to complete your purchase.
- Appraisals are undertaken by third party contractors retained by the bank to provide an honest assessment of the property’s value to support the bank in analyzing the value of the property and the cost of the loan.
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Do you have questions about real estate? Check out these 6 real estate tips for you, then contact our Buffalo Real Estate Lawyer Richard H. Cole for guidance. If you have questions about buying or selling real estate, please contact us to schedule a consultation with an experienced real estate attorney today. We welcome the opportunity to serve you.
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