[schema type="organization" orgtype="LocalBusiness" url="http://4salebydonna.com" name="Real Estate Agent Donna Baker" description="Real Estate Agent showing homes for sale and available real estate in Monrovia, Pasadena, Arcadia the San Gabriel Valley in Southern California." city="Monrovia" state="Ca" postalcode="91016" email="donna@4salebydonna.com " phone="(626) 408-7766 "]
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Buying a home at the right price

Planning and timely, accurate information go a long way toward making the home buying process easier. Here are twelve key steps you can follow to make sure the purchase of your next home goes smoothly:

  • Prepare financially by checking your credit report/score and paying off or closing accounts, as needed.
  • Find out what you can afford – Work with a lender you trust and make sure you know the difference between what you can afford and what you’re comfortable paying for a monthly mortgage payment.
  • Pick the right loan based on how long you will own the home and how quickly you want to build equity. Your lender can assist you on what loan programs are available to you.
  • Get pre-approved for your mortgage to make your purchase offer more attractive to sellers. Go beyond just the pre-qualification process.
  • Identify needs and wants, including the particulars of the home and type of neighborhood you want to live in. Prioritize those things you absolutely have to have along with things that you’d like to have, but can live without.
  • Work with the right agent to make sure your interests are represented in the transaction. Look for an agent with experience, a solid track record, knowledge of the area, and good listening and negotiating skills. During the home buying process, you will become very close to your agent. Make sure it’s someone you feel comfortable with from the beginning.
  • Research market trends and local plans to make certain the neighborhood will stay the way you like it.
  • Take a close look at home condition, as well as utility and maintenance costs.
  • ALWAYS include an inspection contingency in your contract to protect your interests in case the home you want has major problems. In a competitive market, many buyers are tempted or sometimes even required to remove that contingency in order to get their offer accepted. I would never advise on proceeding with a purchase without an inspection contingency.
  • Be flexible about the “little things” when negotiating with sellers. Don’t nickel and dime them asking for repairs of small items such as switch-plates and nicked paint.
  • Offer a substantial deposit to convince sellers you’re serious about buying. Many sellers are advised by their listing agents to require a 3% deposit on all offers submitted for consideration.

Make sure you understand the purchase agreement before you sign it. Your agent should walk you through each item to be sure it meets with your approval.

Buying a home is a major, life-changing decision. Be sure you’re prepared!

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