Buying a Central Mass Home usually represents your single biggest investment – and debt.
The home buying process in Central Mass is one of the most exciting, and frequently stressful, experiences you’ll ever go through. This holds true whether you’ve bought many homes in Central Mass or you’re looking to buy your first, whether you’re in the market for a new primary residence, an investment property or that perfect vacation getaway.
Today’s real estate market in Central Mass can offer more opportunities, yet can be filled with more risks than ever before. There are a multitude of factors to consider and decisions to make. When buying a home in Central Mass it’s crucial to have all the available resources necessary to make a well-informed decision, together with the time required to make use of them. It’s important to enlist the help of a trusted real estate professional who’ll be able to provide expert guidance at each step of the buying process. Using a Central Mass Realtor specialist will give you the confidence you need to feel like you are not only getting the best home for you but also the at the best possible price.
Finding and purchasing a Central Mass home includes the following steps, which will be examined in more detail throughout this booklet:
1.) Define your Goals, Research your Options, Make your Plans
Given that buying a Central Mass home is such a big step, it’s very important to educate and prepare yourself as much as possible. This means clearly determining the reasons you’re buying and what kind of Central Mass home you’re looking for. Is a single family home the best option for you, or would having a condo be better so you dont have to worry about maintenance issues? Maybe buying a 2 family with the added help of rental income could be the easiest way to afford your first home. Since buying and financing a Central Mass home are so closely related, it also means examining your current financial situation and projecting how much you can afford with the help of a local Central Mass lender.
Once you’ve answered these questions, even tentatively, you’ll be in a better position to research housing and mortgage options in Central Mass and create an action plan and timelines for moving forward. Although it is possible to do this yourself, you will save time and money by consulting an experienced, full time real estate professional right from the start.
2.) Contact a Full Time Realtor
Buying real estate in Central Mass is a complex matter with so many factors to consider since no two homes or transactions are alike. There are also many unique opportunities and potential pitfalls in the current market you may not be aware of and really need help sorting through all the choices and options. Once you’ve decided to buy, finding the right Central Mass Realtor who will explain all this to you and answer all your questions is really critical. And the best part is that a buyer’s agent costs you nothing in most cases. The seller of the home in Central Mass that you purchase is the one that pays their commission even though they have a fiduciary responsibility to protect you in the transaction. Its really a win win situation for buyers!!
When choosing a real estate professional to guide you through the property search, financing, negotiation and transaction processes, you should consider their local market knowledge, experience, and online reviews. This field has many people come and go and work part time while doing another full time job so do your research to make sure you hire the right person for the job!
3.) Get Pre-Approved for a Loan
It is recommended that you get pre-approved for a loan before you start viewing Central Mass homes with the serious intention of buying, because sellers and seller agents will only consider your offer if you have proof that you can actually afford it. Right now with so many Central Mass buyers out there, to be competetive, you need to have all your ducks lined up. The pre-approval process involves meeting with a lender and authorizing them to examine your current financial situation and credit history. Sometimes this can be done online to save time. On the basis of this examination, the lender may provide you with a document detailing the amount you can borrow to buy a home. Your Realtor is an excellent source of lenders that can get you quick, dependable answers.
The Benefits of Pre-approval include:
You’ll know what you are eligible to receive and be able to plan accordingly . As a qualified, motivated buyer you’ll be taken more seriously when you make an offer. Lenders can tell you if you qualify for special programs that will help you afford a better home (particularly if you’re a first-time buyer).
Real estate financing is available from many sources, and an experienced real estate professional will be able to suggest lenders with a history of offering excellent mortgage products and services. For more information about the benefits of pre-approval and the loan process in general, see - The Loan Process – Financing Your Home Purchase, on page 14 of attached guide.
4.) View Homes and Select THE ONE
Simply put, the key to theCentral Mass home search process is knowing what you’re looking for. Among other things, that means distinguishing between “must-haves” and “like-to-haves”. To help you to target your search and define your home preference priorities, this guide includes a Home Search Worksheet on page 23.
That said, here are a few recent facts about the search process that might put your experience in perspective:
92% of buyers use the internet or mobile apps to search for homes. The typical buyer searches for 12 weeks and views 12 homes, 2 97% of buyers view real estate agents as important in the home search process.
There are many benefits to starting the search process at a local real estate website like ERA Key Realty. You can view many homes and their details, take video tours and access neighborhood info.
However, it’s also important to view homes in person. While the property details may seem similar online, homes can be very different in terms of layout, design, workmanship and other aspects. When you view homes with the help of an experienced real estate professional, they will notice things you might miss, provide expert analysis, and act as an impartial sounding board, to help you make the best decision for yourself and your family.
5.) Make an Offer and Negotiate with the Seller
Once you’ve found the Central Mass home you’d like to buy, it’s time to make an offer. Your buyers agent will write this up for you using contracts from the Mass Realtors board usually. These contracts enable you to specify a sale price and also allow the inclusion of clauses specifying various terms of purchase, such as the closing and possession dates, your deposit amount, and other conditions.
You should carefully review these clauses with your Central Mass Realtor to be sure that they accurately express your intended offer. In addition to drawing up the contract, your real estate professional will be happy to address all of your questions about the offer process.*
Once you’ve written the offer, your Central Mass Realtor will present it to the seller and/or the seller’s representative. At that point, the process will vary somewhat depending on the market you’re in.
Generally speaking, the seller can accept your offer, reject it, or counter it to initiate the negotiation process.
Successive counter-offers, with deadlines for responding and meeting conditions, may be exchanged between you and the seller until a mutual pending agreement is reached or the negotiations breakdown.
Negotiations involve many factors specifically relating to different market conditions, homes and sellers, some of which are examined in – Successfully Negotiating The Deal – on page 18 of the Realtor.com guide attached below.
6.) Secure Your Financing
Once you have a pending agreement, it’s time to return to your chosen lender to finalize mortgage details in order to close the deal. This means finalizing your down payment, interest rate, regular payment schedule and all other financial conditions associated with the closing.
As the saying goes, ‘let the buyer beware’. Unfortunately, too many buyers suffer negative consequences from not fully understanding their financing decisions. Thus, it’s crucial for you to work with people you TRUST. In this regard, a good real estate professional can become a true friend for life! For more information on the loan process, see – The Loan Process – Financing Your Home Purchase, on page 14 of the guide enclosed at the bottom.
Close the deal- If you’ve efficiently taken care of everything connected with purchasing your new home, taking ownership should be a positive joy with no surprises. Key steps to the closing, also referred to as the “escrow” or “settlement”, include:
Getting a title search – you will need a historical review of all legal documents relating to ownership of the property – to ensure that there are no claims against the title of the property. It’s also necessary to purchase Title Insurance for protection in the event of errors in the records or mistakes in the review process.
The final walkthrough – you will be given the chance to look at the home one last time to make sure it’s in the same condition as when you signed the sale agreement.
The settlement – typically, on the Closing Date you’ll meet with a lawyer, real estate professional, or escrow agent to verify and sign all the paperwork required to complete the transaction. The settlement will include paying your closing costs, legal fees, property adjustments and transfer taxes. At that point, you’ll receive the property title and copies of all documentation pertaining to the purchase.
Oh, and of course the BEST part – you’ll get the keys! Within a few hours it should be recorded with the local registry of deeds and you are free to move in!