Are you contemplating purchasing your new home in Durham? Seagroves Realty can help.

For most people, purchasing a home can be a stressful event. But with a little up-front planning, it isn't all that complex. I like to provide buyers with an overview of the whole deal so they'll know exactly what they can expect. Here are my nine steps to buying a home. When you're ready to get started, just contact me here or e-mail me at . I'm glad to address any questions you have about this information.

Step 1 – Get ready to buy a home
There are a lot of things you should consider prior to starting your home search. When you start your search, you'll want to create a check list of features you want to have, get an idea of what neighborhoods and school districts you'd like to live in, and begin working on your budget. A good guideline to follow is that your mortgage payment should be less than 1/3 of your monthly income.

Step 2 – Communicate with a real estate agent in Durham
That's where I come in. We'll schedule a time to meet so we can talk about your real estate needs and get an idea of your upcoming plans. We'll discuss everything from neighborhoods, schools in the Durham area, the mortgage and housing industries, to any other economic factors that could affect your purchase today or in the future.

I can also help you facilitate the loan process. There are some excellent mortgage professionals in Durham, and I work with a lot of them, so you're in great hands. They'll assist you with determining which kind of loan is best for you and help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Begin your search
After our first meeting, I'll begin finding homes on the market that are great for you. I'll get a sneak peek of many of the houses and exclude the duds, and then we'll schedule appointments to view the houses when it's most convenient for you.

When we tour the houses, I'll identify positive features and bad ones. And I'll ask you to talk about things you like and don't like. Oftentimes, buyers revise their list of must-haves as we tour houses and some features become far more necessary than others. If that's the case, I'll go back through all the listings once again and narrow it down to the house of your dreams.

Step 4 – Know the market
An agent's knowledge of the Durham housing market is an essential agent in your home search. And I assure you I'm informed of all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I can alert you to what neighborhoods are "hot" and call for immediate action and the ones that are "cool" and allow for more consideration.

As we view homes, I'll be sure to tell you if the seller's asking price has room for negotiation or if I believe the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be mindful and be sure to ask a lot of questions. Any real estate agent will convince you they truly understand the home market. If it seems like they don't know everything, just call me at 919-317-1115 or e-mail me at , and I'll be happy to answer your questions. My market expertise will keep you a step above the rest through the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find the home you've been waiting for
We'll find the home of your dreams in the Durham area, and when we do, I'll meticulously develop your home purchase offer. The offer will be tailored keeping your needs in mind and the home, including some contingencies, such as acquiring financing, finishing the inspection, and a clean title.

When we turn in your purchase offer, you'll probably need to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit submitted to the seller to secure an offer to purchase the property. The amount is typically put towards the cost of closing. If the offer is accepted, we should close on the property about 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows necessary time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
Unfortunately most contracts aren't closed on the beginning offer – it's pretty common to receive a counter offer. Don't let this alarm you. We'll figure out whether or not to accept the counter offer, submit our own counter offer, or refuse the seller's offer and go on.

How aggressively we negotiate the contract depends on the state of the market. We'll also work within your financing limits. And when it's all said and done, we'll assemble a deal that works well for you.

Step 7 – Get a loan
After we sign the final sales contract, you'll begin working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. If you're already pre-qualified, it won't be a long process at all. However, you need to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll manage all the property information your mortgage lender will need to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
Your mortgage lender will supply you with a Loan Estimate (LE) of closing costs within three days of getting your loan application. You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing closing costs from your lender within three days of taking your loan application. This estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements mandate that it has to involve all closing costs and be within a close range of accuracy, and I'll analyze the estimate and let you know if everything looks okay.

Then we'll close on your home. This will most likely take place at a title company or escrow office and will most often be a smooth and comfortable event.

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 919-317-1115 or e-mail me at .

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