Buying or selling a home?

With some up-front planning, buying a home isn't too complex, but the event can be stressful for a lot of people. I like to furnish buyers with an overview of the whole deal so they'll know exactly what they can expect. These are my nine steps to buying a home. If you have questions about this information or if you're prepared to get started, you can contact me here or e-mail me at .

Step 1 – Get ready to buy
There are a lot of things you need to take into account before you look for a home. When you start your search, you'll probably want to form a check list of features you want to have, get a feel for what school districts and neighborhoods you want to live in, and start planning around your budget. Keeping your mortgage payment around a third of your net monthly income is a good rule to adhere to.

Step 2 – Communicate with a real estate agent
That's where I can help. We can plan a time to meet so we can talk about your real estate needs and get an idea of your plans for the future. We'll discuss the mortgage and housing industries, other economic factors that might affect your purchase today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and schools in the Albuquerque area.

I'll also help you begin the loan process. Qmetro Realtors Inc works with some of Albuquerque's finest mortgage professionals, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They can assist you with choosing which kind of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Begin looking
After we meet, I'll begin searching for homes on the market that are good for you. I'll preview most of the houses and eliminate the bad ones, and then we'll schedule appointments to view the houses at a time that's convenient for you.

When we view the homes, I'll call attention to positive features, as well as bad ones. And I'll ask you to talk about things you like and dislike. For the most part, buyers revise their list of must-haves as we view houses and some things become far more important than others. If that's the situation, I'll search the listings one more time and narrow it down to the home you've been wishing for.

Step 4 – Get a grasp of the market
Your agent's knowledge of the Albuquerque home market is an essential factor in your home search. And I can assure you I'm familiar with all the schools and neighborhoods, and I'll communicate which areas are "hot" and demand immediate action and others that are "cool" and allow for more consideration.

As we tour homes, I'll let you know if the list price has room for bargaining or if I believe the house is "priced to sell." Every real estate agent in Albuquerque will tell you they truly know the housing market, but keep an eye out, and be sure to ask lots of questions. If it appears they don't know everything, call me at 505.615.0436 or e-mail me at , and I'll be happy to answer any questions you might have. My understanding of the market will keep you a step ahead throughout the entire process.

Step 5 – Find the home you've been looking for
I'm certain we'll find your dream house in the Albuquerque area. When that happens, I'll precisely create your purchase offer. The offer will be tailored with your needs in mind and the home, including a lot of contingencies. A few examples are obtaining financing, completing the home inspection, and a clean title.

When submitting your purchase offer, you'll likely need to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit given to the home seller to secure the offer to buy the property, and it's typically applied to the closing costs. If the seller accepts your offer, we should close on the home within 30 to 60 days after. This allows ample time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
Most contracts don't close on the first offer, and it's very common to receive a counter offer. But don't let it discourage you. We'll talk over whether or not to accept the counter offer, submit our own counter offer, or refuse the seller's offer and go on.

The state of the market determines how aggressively we negotiate the contract. We'll also work within your financing budget. And when it's all said and done, we'll formulate a contract that is best for you.

Step 7 – Secure your loan
Once the deal is finalized, you'll start working with your lender to close the loan. If you're pre-approved, it won't be a long process at all. But you need to keep in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll handle all the property information your mortgage lender will need to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) outlining your closing costs from your mortgage lender within three days of receiving your application. This estimate is formed from the loan amount, and RESPA requirements require that it has to involve all closing costs and fall within a tight range of accuracy. I'll examine the estimate and let you know if everything looks adequate.

Then we'll close on your home. This will most likely happen at a title company or escrow office and will probably be a smooth and hassle-free occasion.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! It's time to move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything, just call me at 505.615.0436 or e-mail me at .

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