Timely Home Buying Tips Part 3
10. Get the appraisal
A home appraisal will show you how the home you’re interested in compares to similar properties in the same neighborhood, and provide you with peace of mind in the final negotiation process. An Arizona Licensed Real Estate Appraiser completes 150 education hours and is qualified to provide you a Fair Market Value. Appraisals are based on physical appearance evidence of structural soundness.
Your Appraiser is not looking at your furnishings or décor. They are looking at whether the property had been well maintained and updated in the years since it has been built. A Home Appraiser will look to see that the roof is in good repair, that the walls, windows and doors are sound and the mechanical systems are in good working order. They use some of the same factors as an inspector, but perhaps don’t go into the same fine tooth level of detail.
The home appraisal report is shared directly with the lender to confirm that the property meets the standards of the loan to be issued. You, the buyer, and the seller will also receive copies of the appraisal report.
10. Get a home inspection
Your Real Estate Agent can provide you with the contact information of a trusted Home Inspector. You’ll want to get an experienced Home Inspector who meets national home inspection standards. Both the National Association of Home Inspectors and the American Society of Home Inspectors require that home inspectors complete 250 fee-paid home inspections, before they can be affiliated members.
Obtaining a timely home inspection is an essential step in your home buying process. The cost is minimal for the reassurance that everything is working as it should. The home inspection provides you with an overall view of the property’s structural soundness, and alert you to mechanical concerns. It will show where repairs are needed and provide insight into the level of care the property has had.
Your home inspection should be completed within 14 days of your offer being accepted. You aren’t required to be there when the inspection is completed, though you’ll want to speak with your home inspector about their findings. This report will help you in the final negotiation process.
For more information on obtaining a home inspection, check out this great article on Angie’s List.
12. Negotiate purchase price, repairs and credits
Once your offer is accepted, you will write up a purchase agreement for the property. This agreement includes the price of the home. However, if the inspection or appraisal comes back with unexpected information or discrepancies, you may be able to renegotiate the purchase price.
With reliable reports, your agent can return to the seller and ask for an adjustment in the price, repairs to be completed, or compensation for you to complete the repairs. Negotiation can save you thousands of dollars in expensive repairs down the line and will put you in a better position to get the price you want.
13. Complete a final walk through
Your final walk through is your opportunity to view the home before you take ownership of it. Plan your walk through a few days prior to closing and bring your agent with you.
Your agent can provide you with a checklist of items that you need to be addressed during your walk through. Bring your inspection report, in order to address any concerns. Also be sure to bring your camera, to take any necessary photos.
The final walk through can also be a time where you can plan your move, by making note of entrances and available storage space. You can take measurements for items like window coverings, as well.
14. Buying tips for closing on your home
This is the time you’ve been waiting for!
Your home has passed the inspections and the loan has finally been approved to close. You will be given a closing date and location where you will sign the paperwork.
Three days prior to closing, your lender will provide you with a copy of the loan disclosure. This disclosure details the type of loan you will be receiving, the purchase price of your home, your interest rate, monthly payment, and any additional loan fees.
You will also be told how much money you need to bring to closing and if any money needs to be wired in advance. Be sure to ask your lender any questions about the disclosure, prior to the closing date.
Check with your agent to make sure all the paperwork is in order. Bring the loan disclosure document with you to your closing appointment and use it to compare to the closing documents, to be certain that everything matches and is according to your expectations.
Take your time in going over the documents and ask the closing agent, a representative of the title company, any questions you may have. You can have them explain any terms you don’t understand. This is a legally binding contract, so make sure you have a full understanding of what you are signing.
Your loan will fund shortly after the paperwork is signed. Please be aware that this funding process can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. Once your loan is funded, you will be given the keys to your new home!