Advice For Homebuying
WHO PAYS THE AGENT?
Not a single dime comes out of your pocket to be paid to the real estate agent who represents you throughout your purchase of a home. How this works is that whenever a home is listed for sale the seller agrees to pay out a certain percentage, usually 6% of the total purchase price, to real estate agents who represent the buyer and the seller of a transaction. The agent who helps you throughout the process of purchasing a home is paid for by the seller of the home you choose to purchase, and that agent receives half of that 6% commission we mentioned previously. So there you go! Great service, advice, knowledge and negotiating expertise provided to you at no charge to you. Who wouldn’t want that throughout the home purchasing process?
HOW DO I AVOID BUYING A LEMON?
One particular area of stress related to homebuying is knowing whether or not the home is actually safe and sound. Appearances on the surface are not necessarily trustworthy, and everyone fears of buying a home that is a pig with lipstick on it. What’s the condition of the roof? What’s the history on the property concerning termites? How much longer will the heating and air work until I need to replace it? These and many other concerns come to mind when wanting to avoid purchasing a lemon, and that’s why it’s important to have professional, reliable, experts representing you and helping you with the decision making process. Home inspectors like Karl Kordsiemon of InspectOK are a great resource and security to anyone buying a home. Having a trustworthy individual or company who performs inspections for you will allow you to rest assured that your make a smart investment of your money, and not purchasing a money pit. (For additional info about Karl Kordsiemon and InspectOK, see http://www.inspectok.com/about.html)
DON’T FEAR FINANCING
Everyone wants to know for certain that they qualify for a home, and not only that they qualify, but also that they qualify to afford the home they really want. That being said, who doesn’t fear rejection? But here’s a voice of reason chiming in to encourage you to take the necessary steps to move forward toward your goal of purchasing a home you really want: Absolutely every single one of us who purchases a home goes through this potential anxiety at some point in our lives. Don’t let the fear of the unknown keep you from moving forward. If you really want to enjoy the benefits of homeownership, figuring out your financial status is truly harmless and must be done. We’d be happy to get you in contact with a great lender who can provide you with your best available options, and even if they determine you aren’t quite ready to qualify, they’ll be able to provide a time frame and advice as to how you can put yourself in position to qualify for the loan you want later down the road. Don’t fear financing. Take the plunge. The value of homeownership is completely worth it.
WHAT IS A GOOD OFFER?
Making a good offer on a home is extremely simple. Once you check a place out in person and you fall in love it, you don’t want to let those emotions carry you into submitting an offer that’s overpaying for the quality and condition of the home. You want to base your offer on how similar properties have sold within the last year in the area. It’s really as simple as taking 3-4 homes of similar size and condition within a square mile, or in some cases within the same neighborhood of the home you have interest in, seeing what they were purchased for, and submitting an offer based upon that data. Of course some houses don’t have many other examples, and in that case, other strategies can be employed, but for a general rule of thumb, the aforementioned process will remove the guesswork and uncertainty of submitting an offer on a home.
HOW MUCH DOES HOME BUYING COST?
Although many people believe they can’t purchase a home unless they have 20% saved up for a down payment, that couldn’t be further from the truth. The most you will typically be required to put down is 5% of the home’s value, and there are many loan programs available for even lower down payments. Also, there are down payment assistance programs available for qualified buyers, so it is totally possible to do $0 down home purchase deals. And although you will have transaction costs (referred to as closing costs), these can very often be negotiated so that the seller pays them on your behalf. To determine your monthly mortgage payment for homes of different values, check out a mortgage calculator like this one: http://themortgagereports.com/mortgagecalculator. Be sure and include each of the following to get an accurate payment: principal and interest, property taxes, homeowner’s insurance, and PMI (private mortgage insurance). Beware of calculators that don’t include all these parts to your payment!
NOT ALL HOME SEARCH SITES ARE EQUAL
It happens so often where we visit with someone interested in a home, they say “Yes, I love the place listed on 123 Street. When can we go look at it in person?” Come to find out, the home they wanted to see was purchased two months ago but the site they were using had information that wasn’t updated. Think about how many different people are potentially looking for the exact kind of home you want to purchase. You might be looking for a place that 50 other people are looking for in the same area, at the same time. If that’s the case, how important is it that you receive accurate, up-to-date information regarding the best available options as soon as they become available to purchase? Don’t mess around with websites that are extremely limited and often list inaccurate information.
We encourage you to visit with us about what you’re searching for so that we can begin emailing you the best available properties from the OKC MLS (Oklahoma Multiple Listing Service, where all agents in the OKC Metro and surrounding areas list homes for sale).
SUMMARY OF THE HOME BUYING PROCESS
The best place to start is by sitting down with someone from our office here at Maven Real Estate to discuss the ins and outs of the entire process. This will help you understand how everything in the transaction should work. If you’re ready to go ahead and get started, we suggest you begin with financing by visiting with a couple lenders in order to figure out what your best available options are for financing the purchase of a home. From there you can determine the monthly payment you would be most comfortable with, as well as what price range you want to search within.
You can then begin determining features and aspects of a home you require or desire. Put a list together of “must haves” and “things that aren’t a must, but I would like.” Then visit with Maven Real Estate! Call us at 405-835-3434 and tell us what you want to find. We’ll begin searching for you immediately and email you the best results. We can then go look at 5-10 of them together and submit an offer as soon as we find the one that’s right for you!
Once we submit an offer you can anticipate anywhere between 24-48 hours of negotiations until an agreement is reached. Once an agreement is made we’ll make arrangements with you to get your earnest money check to the appropriate title company (most earnest money checks are $500, but some can be as much as $2000, depending on the value of the home being purchased).
Once we have signatures on the agreed upon terms the inspection period will begin, and we’ll have between 10-15 days to inspect the home and make sure it’s in a condition that is satisfactory to you the buyer. If within the inspection period you discover issues that lead you to back out of the deal, no problem. You will receive your earnest money back and just be responsible for paying for the inspections that took place on the home (most general and termite inspections will cost a combined approximate $500). We will take the results of our inspections and begin negotiating with the seller regarding treatments, replacements, and repairs we would like them to perform on the property in order to continue in the deal.
Once an agreement is reached concerning the necessary repairs, the seller will take responsibility to see to it that the repairs are done correctly. We will be checking in with the progress of the repairs being made, do a walk through as we get closer to closing and make sure all requested repairs were performed correctly. There’s not much to it after that final walk through, and the closing (when you finally get the keys) will take place shortly after. In total, the time frame between the original offer being agreed upon and the closing on the home is usually between 30 and 45 days.
Josh was the most patient and understanding person to work with. I went back and forth on my decisions on the property I was looking for. Josh helped me along the way and was very helpful, could not ask for a more professional Realtor.
Could not have had a better experience! I was super picky about what I was looking for! Not to mention, I was shopping for a home for both my mother and myself to live in together. The problem was, I was the one choosing the property without my mom ever seeing it because she was still living in CA…and she was paying for it…CASH! Talk about pressure!!! The point is, Aaron met with me on several occasions and showed me many properties and listened to me find fault about how small the bedrooms were…
My wife and I met Jeremy when we were looking for a house to buy. He is one of the most humble, respectful and professional realtors we have ever met. He found us a house that we closed on and we really love it. Jeremy, we appreciate everything you’ve done for us. You are a member of our family. God bless.
My husband and I had a amazing experience with Jeremy Brown ! He helped us find the house we absolutely love! He was very compassionate to make sure we were 100% happy with the house we chose and made sure to answer every question we had. He walked us through the process as this was our very first home! Thank you so much Jeremy!
Aaron did a great job helping us buy a home No pressure to choose a house. We were very particular about the house we wanted and he made it happen. Thanks Aaron!
When I was going through a difficult time in my life, these guys were there to help me through every step of buying a first home. Customer service is what these guys do. Not only did they show me close to 20 homes, but they would let me know truthfully if there were any issues with the home. Even when the final negotiations were getting stressful for me, these guys handled everything and got me a really great deal. I highly recommend if you are looking for guys who love their job, they are truly…
Aaron was our top choice for realtor and he was above and beyond. He listens to his clients, takes time out of his own personal life to go above and beyond his duties to make sure his clients are well taken care of. Not only is he a great realtor but he’s a wonderful friend. We will hire him in the future.. Highly recommended!!!!
Our experience with Maven Real Estate was phenomenal! We appreciated the time and expertise they dedicated to our house-hunting mission. They answered innumerable questions and patiently explained each step of the process, as needed. Josh and the others could be counted on to respond promptly and provide invaluable insight. It was wonderful to work with them! We’d do it again!
I highly recommend this amazing group of professionals. Their contacts got my place from rental into selling condition at very low cost and got it listed and sold quickly for higher price than the final appraisal value. I would definitely use them again for any type of transaction in the OKC area. And if you are thinking about trying to “save” by doing things yourself and not involving a Realtor, DON’T. You will do this two or three times in your life, so get a professional who does this several…
I was introduced to Jeremy Brown when he was helping a young couple look for their first home and we had just put our house on the market to see if we could sell it without a realtor. Jeremy quickly became acquainted with not only the buyers needs, but our needs as well. There were a couple of hiccups along the way and Jeremy guided both parties through those and presented options for the best outcome of all involved, going the extra mile when he didn’t necessarily have to. Through this proces…
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