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The Home Buying Process: Start to Finish

David Bartels

Meet David Bartels - Selected as one of America's Top 100 Real Estate Agents, he is among the Top 1% of of all agents nationwide and leader of the #1 ...

Meet David Bartels - Selected as one of America's Top 100 Real Estate Agents, he is among the Top 1% of of all agents nationwide and leader of the #1 ...

Sep 30 7 minutes read

While buying a home can be an intimidating process, the Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty team is here to help. From developing a customized home buying strategy and finding your dream home, to crafting and negotiating an offer, and providing value-added services such as a free move and unlimited free legal consultations, we are your trusted partner in the homebuying process. If you are thinking about buying a house, but aren’t exactly sure what's involved, here's a rundown of the Home Buying Process, from Start to Finish:

  1. Home Buying Strategy - Meet with your Help-U-Sell Full Service Buyers Agent to discuss the home buying process and help you develop a strategy by reviewing your life situation, and recommending one or more lenders.

  2. Get Pre-Approved for a Home Loan  - Meet with your Lender and get pre-qualified in order to understand how much home you’re qualified to buy, the monthly payment you’re able to afford, plus determining how much you’ll need for a down payment and closing costs.

  3. Find Your Dream Home - Work with your HUS Help-U-Sell Full Service Buyers Agent to identify properties that meet your home search criteria and tour those homes.

    Your Help-U-Sell Full Service Buyers Agent can provide with you exclusive and early access to properties that are not available anywhere else. You get everything other Realtors can show you, PLUS homes that cannot be found on the MLS, including For Sale By Owners, short sales, bank owned properties, and exclusive listings.

    Your Help-U-Sell Full Service Buyers Agent can also give you real time access to the Multiple Listing Service so you receive instant listing alerts the moment properties become available.

  4. Prepare & Write An Offer - By comparing list price, market value & market conditions (i.e. sellers market), your Help-U-Sell Full Service Buyers Agent will assist you with defining the contingencies that protect you as a buyer (inspection, appraisal, loan, sale of your current property, etc.).  Sometimes it helps to write a letter of introduction to the seller, with a picture and why you’re the ideal buyer.

  5. Present the Offer - Your Help-U-Sell Full Service Buyers Agent will present the offer on your behalf, with a cover letter that summarizes the offer and provide important terms that the seller needs to understand, as well as information about the buyer to try to present the most positive impression to the seller, especially when there are multiple offers.

  6. Counteroffer - Usually the seller would counter and we would counter back. We are expert negotiators, who will mediate offers in a way that protects you and gets accepted by the seller.

  7. Escrow - When your offer is accepted, you enter the escrow phase and there’s several steps to complete. Your earnest money (~3% of the down payment) is deposited into the escrow account.

  8. Loan Application – Your loan application should be started immediately after your offer is accepted or the process could be delayed. You submit a completed loan application, as well as providing all necessary paperwork to your Lender.

  9. Contingency period – There are specific time frames that have to be met in order to clear the following (typical) contingencies:

    - Home Inspection & Termite Inspection – Your Help-U-Sell Full Service Buyers Agent can recommend several certified inspectors, but it’s your choice as to whom to use. If there are repairs or damage, a Request for Repairs could be issued to the Seller, who can respond in several ways (agree to repair, decline to repair, offer a credit, etc.).

    - Appraisal - Your Lender chooses an appraiser to determine the market value of the home and the appraisal report has to demonstrate that the market value equals or exceeds the purchase price. The loan cannot be approved if the purchase price exceeds the value reported by the appraiser.

    - Loan - During the escrow process, the loan processor and the underwriter make sure the property (and the buyer) meet the requirements of the lender, and if so, they’ll give a final approval.

    - Sale of Buyers house – This can complicate the buying process, but in general, when the contingency is removed from the sale of your current property, then the contingency can be removed on your new home purchase.

  10. Proof of Homeowners Insurance – You’ll need to choose a homeowners insurance agent and send the necessary paperwork to the escrow company.

  11. Signing Documents – Once the loan is approved, a closing disclosure is required. After a 3-day waiting period, your Lender can prepare the loan documents for signature. Usually these are sent to the escrow company and arrangements are made to sign these, either in person or electronically.

  12. Down Payment and Closing Costs – These funds are sent to the escrow company. The escrow company creates a Settlement Statement that includes an estimated itemization of all of the costs you will need to provide at closing. Your earnest money is usually applied to these closing costs.

  13. Loan is Funded – Your Lender sends the money to the escrow company and they distribute the various funds to the appropriate people or companies. The Title company confirms that the amounts and receivers are correct.

  14. Close of Escrow – The day after the funding, the deed will be recorded at the County Recorder’s office.

  15. Move In - After the recording of the deed is confirmed, you, the buyer officially become the owner, you receive the keys and can take possession of the property!

In addition to expertly guiding you through though the home buying process, we provide "Better Than Full Service" benefits you can't find anywhere else:

  • We Will Pay for your Move When you Buy with Us!
  • We Guarantee a Home Warranty!
  • We will provide free handyman services!
  • We provide free legal consultations!
  • We will even guarantee your satisfaction, by agreeing to sell your home for free and help you buy another one if you do not love your new house!

The Home Buying Process is somewhat complicated, but Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty is here to guide you, every step of the way. With expert agents and array of value-added services not offered by other realtors, Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty is the smartest way to buy the home of your dreams. 

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