1. First, you must obtain approval from a lender. Benita can provide you with lender information if you do not already have a lender.

2. You will begin your “dream” phase of looking for your new home. We will provide you with up to date listings in your price range, area(s) that you are interested in and the type of home that you are searching for.

3. Upon finding a home that you and your family are interested in – We will write an offer for the home. The contract is lengthy and often times confusing but we will explain all of the documents and information in the offer to you upon reviewing and signing.

4. When you are putting an offer in on a home that you and your family are interested in – you will need to provide the lender approval letter and a check (amount is negotiable but traditionally $1,000 in our area) for earnest money deposit (EMD). These funds can be returned to you at closing or can be used for extra items that are required during the buying process. Your lender will provide that information for you and talk to you about using your escrow of $1000.00.

5. Once an offer is written – We will send your offer to the listing agent of the seller and he/she will present your offer to the owner of the home. The owner can do one of three things – they can accept your offer, counter offer (different amount or different extras that you have asked for) or they can reject your offer.

6. If a counter is sent back, We will meet with you to go over what the seller has proposed. Here again – you can accept, counter back to the seller or reject their counter offer.

7. Upon accepting (either by the seller or you) the contract becomes “ratified”. Once a contract is “ratified” there are only three (3) ways that you can get out of the contract without being in default. First (1st) is if the home is in a HOA (Home Owner’s Association) community and you do not agree with the terms of the HOA, which will provided to you upon being ratified within a 10 day range – you can back out of the contract without being in default. The second (2nd) way is when the home inspection is preformed (which we will provide you with home inspectors in our area if you do not know of one) and this will cost between $350-450 out of pocket at the time of the inspection. If the home inspector finds something wrong with the home and you decide that the problem is too big, you can get out of your contract without being in default. The third (3rd) way is not being able to get funding from your lender. Your lender will review your file a few days prior to closing it is always a good idea to hold off on any large purchases until AFTER settlement as making a large purchase BEFORE settlement may cause you to no longer qualify for your loan.

8. Once the appraisal is completed you will be notified by your lender of the value. If the value is at sales price or higher then the contract will proceed to closing. However if the value is less than the sales price then the following options will apply: (1) the seller agrees to reduce the sales price to match the appraised value, (b) you agree to pay any difference out of pocket between the appraised value and sales price, or (c) the contract becomes void.

9. Your loan can take anywhere from 30-45 days to close after being “ratified”.

10. We will give you names of settlement companies in our area that you can choose for your closing location.

11. Your lender will provide a Settlement statement, typically a few days prior to the day of closing, that will show ALL aspects of your loan. It will show you where your money is going and where the seller’s money is going as well. The settlement agent will go over this with you in detail at the time of closing. Your settlement company will have all closing documentation and we will be present with you during closing to answer any and all questions you may have pertaining to your closing packet.

12. You will need to get all utilities transferred to your name effective the day of settlement.

13. We will conduct a final walk thru, typically the day of settlement, to ensure that the property is still in the condition you saw at the time of contract, plus to ensure any repairs which were agreed upon at the home inspection have been completed.

14. At the conclusion of settlement, you will be given the keys to your new home (it is always a good idea to have locks changed if you are purchasing a “resale” home.