Buying or selling a home? Big Bear Real Estate can help.

Purchasing a home is stressful for most people. However, with a little up-front planning, it isn't all that difficult. I like to supply buyers with a road map of the entire deal so they know exactly what to expect. Here are my nine steps to buying a home. If you have any questions about this information or if you're ready to get started, you can contact me here or e-mail me at .

Step 1 – Prepare to buy a home
Prior to starting your home search, there are many things you'll want to contemplate. You'll probably want to create an index of features you need to have, get a feeling for what school districts and neighborhoods you'd like to live in, and begin planning your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than or around a third of your net monthly income is a good guideline to go by.

Step 2 – Contact a real estate agent in Troy
That's where I come in. We can plan a time to meet so we can talk about why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your future plans. We'll talk about everything from neighborhoods, school districts in the Troy area, the mortgage industry, to any other economic factors that may potentially affect your purchase today or in the future.

I can also help you start the loan process. Big Bear Real Estate partners with some of the best mortgage professionals in Troy, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They can help you determine which type of loan is best for you, as well as help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Start looking for a home
After our initial meeting, I'll begin looking for available homes on the market that meet your needs. I'll preview many of the houses and eliminate the duds, and then we'll set up appointments to tour the houses when it's convenient for you.

When we tour the houses, I'll identify positive features and negative ones. I'll also ask you to tell us about things you like and dislike. It's widely common for buyers to amend their must-have list as we view houses and some things become more important than others. If that's the case, I'll search all the listings once again and trim it down to the house of your dreams.

Step 4 – Get a grasp of the market
My awareness of the Troy home market is an imperative aspect in your house search. I'm informed of all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I'll communicate some districts are "hot" and call for prompt action and the ones that are "cold" and allow for thoughtful consideration.

As we tour houses, I'll let you know if the asking price has room for bargaining or if I believe the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be on guard and be sure to ask plenty of questions, as any real estate agent will tell you they truly know the market. If things don't add up, just call me at 802-744-6844 or e-mail me at , and I'd be more than happy to answer any questions you may have. My knowledge of the market will help you stay a step ahead throughout the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find the home you've been waiting for
We'll find the home of your dreams in Troy, and when that happens, I'll thoroughly develop your home purchase offer. The offer will be made to fit your needs and the home. We'll include many contingencies, such as acquiring financing, completing the home inspection, and a clear title.

When submitting your offer, you'll want to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit submitted to a seller to secure an offer to buy the property, and it's often put towards the closing costs. If the seller accepts the offer, we should close on the home about 30 to 60 days after. This allows ample time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
Unfortunately most deals aren't closed on the initial offer – it's widely common to receive a counter offer. But don't let it intimidate you. We'll talk over whether or not to take the counter offer, present our own counter offer, or reject the seller's offer and move on.

How aggressively we negotiate the deal depends on the state of the market. In addition, we'll work within your budget. And at the end of the day, we'll formulate a deal that's best for you.

Step 7 – Obtain your loan
Once we sign the final contract, you'll begin working with your lender to close the loan. If you've been pre-approved, this won't take very long at all, but you need to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll handle all the property information your lender will need to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
Your mortgage lender will supply you with a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) of your closing costs within three days of taking your application. You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) detailing your closing costs from your mortgage lender within three days of receiving your application. The estimate is formed from the loan amount, and RESPA requirements require that it has to involve all closing costs and fall within a narrow range of accuracy. I'll review the estimate and let you know if everything looks adequate.

Then we'll close on your house. This should occur at a title company or escrow office and is often a smooth and pleasant occurrence.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, just call me at 802-744-6844 or e-mail me at .

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