Are you looking to buy your new home in Durham? Seagroves Realty can help.

Purchasing a home intimidates many people, but it isn't very difficult with some planning ahead of time. I like to give buyers a road map of the whole deal so they'll understand exactly what to expect. These are my nine steps to buying a home. Should you have questions regarding this information or if you're prepared to get started, just contact me here or e-mail me at .

Step 1 – Prepare to buy
There are several things you should consider prior to starting your home search. You'll probably want to form a list of items you need, plan for what school districts and neighborhoods you want to live in, and start working on your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than or close to a third of your monthly income is a good rule to follow.

Step 2 – Connect with a real estate agent in Durham
This is where Seagroves Realty comes in. I'd be more than happy to set up a time to get together with you and speak with you regarding why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your plans for the future. We'll talk about everything from neighborhoods, schools in the Durham area, the mortgage industry, to any other economic factors that might affect your buying decision today or in the future.

I'll also help you begin the loan process. Seagroves Realty partners with some of the best mortgage professionals in Durham, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They can assist you in deciding which type of loan is best for you and help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Begin house-hunting
Following our first meeting, I'll begin finding available houses on the market that are a good fit for you. I'll research most of the homes and reject the bad ones, and then we'll book appointments to view the homes when it's convenient for you.

When we tour houses, I'll point out good features and bad ones. I'll even ask you to talk about things you like and dislike. Most often, buyers change their must-have list as we view houses and some items become far more important than others. If that's the situation, I'll search the listings again and trim it down to the home you've been dreaming about.

Step 4 – Comprehend the housing market
An agent's understanding of the Durham home market is an imperative element in your home search. And I assure you I'm conscious of all the schools and neighborhoods, and I'll let you know some areas are "hot" and call for immediate action and the ones that are "cold" and allow for cautiousness.

When we tour houses, I'll be sure to tell you if the asking price has room for bargaining or if I believe the home is "priced to sell." Any REALTOR will claim to understand the market, but trust your instincts, and make sure you ask lots of questions. If things don't add up, call me at 919-317-1115 or e-mail me at , and I'll be happy to answer your questions. My understanding of the market will help you stay a step ahead throughout the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find the home you've been waiting for
I'm sure we'll find your dream home in the Durham area. When that happens, I'll meticulously create your purchase offer. The offer will be made to fit your needs and the home. We'll include some contingencies, such as getting financing, finishing the inspection, and a clear title.

Upon sending in your offer, you'll need to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit given to a home seller to secure the offer to buy the property. The amount is most often applied to the closing costs. If the offer is accepted, we should close about 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows ample time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
Most contracts don't close on the initial offer. It's very common to receive a counter offer. But don't let this discourage you. We'll discuss whether or not to take the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or refuse the seller's offer and move on.

Market conditions will play a role in how aggressively we negotiate the deal. We'll also work within your financing budget. And when it's all said and done, we'll put together a contract that is best for you.

Step 7 – Get financing
Upon finalizing the contract, you'll begin working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. It shouldn't take very long at all if you've been pre-qualified, but you should to keep in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll handle all the property information your lender will need to close the loan.

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

Then we'll close on your house. This should take place at a title company or escrow office and will most often be a smooth and calm occurrence.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you need anything or have any questions, make sure you call me at 919-317-1115 or e-mail me at .

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