|Call us to find out
about $8,000 income tax credit. It expires on December 1, 2009
| You start the home buying process in one of
two ways: you see a home you are interested in buying or you consult a lender to figure
out how much money you can borrow before you find a home (pre-qualifying). The next
step is to sign an agreement of sale with the seller, followed by applying for a loan to
purchase your new home, and home inspection. The final step is called
"closing" where the legal title to the property is transferred to you.
Real Estate Agent
| Frequently, the first person you consult about buying
a home is a real estate agent. The common practice is for the seller to hire the
broker to find someone who will be willing to buy the home on terms and conditions that
are acceptable to him/her. Therefore, the real estate broker you are dealing
with may also represent the seller. However, you can hire me as your own real estate
broker (buyers broker) to represent your interests and provide you with the best
service possible using the latest technology. Also some agents may represent both
buyer and seller in the same transaction.
| Even if the real estate agent represents the seller,
state real estate licensing laws require that the agent treat the buyer fairly. I
will offer to help you obtain a mortgage loan. I may also recommend a particular lender or
attorney. You are not required to follow my recommendations. You should
compare the costs and services offered by other providers with those recommended by me.
| Before you sign an agreement of sale, you might
consider asking an attorney to look it over and tell you if it protects your interests.
If you have already signed your agreement of sale, you might still consider having
an attorney review it. An attorney will also prepare you for the closing. An
attorney who does represent your interests, may also represent the lender in the same
| If choosing an attorney, you should shop around and
ask what services will be performed for what fee. You may ask these questions:
- What is the charge for
- negotiating the agreement of sale
- reviewing documents and giving advice concerning transaction documents
- preparing and recording the closing records
Agreement of Sale
| Here are some important points to consider before you
sign an agreement of sale. I will give you a preprinted form of agreement of sale.
You may make changes and additions to the form agreement, but the seller must agree
to every change. You should also agree with the seller on when you will move in and
what appliances and personal property will be sold with the home.
- Sales Price. For most home purchasers, the sales price is the most
important term. Recognize that other non-monetary terms of the agreement are also
- Mortgage Clause. The agreement of sale provides that your deposit will be
refunded if the sale has to be canceled because you are unable to get a mortgage loan.
For example, your agreement of sale could allow the purchase to be canceled if you
cannot obtain mortgage financing at prevailing interest rates.
- Title. "Title" refers to the legal ownership of your new
property. The seller should provide title, free and clear of all claims by others
against your new home. Claims by others against your new home are sometimes known as
- Home Inspection. I recommend to have the home inspected. An
inspection will determine the condition of the plumbing, heating, cooling and electrical
systems. The structure also will be examined to determine the condition of the roof,
siding and windows. Most buyers pay for these inspections so that the inspector is
working for them, not the seller. If you are not satisfied with the inspection
results, you may want to re-negotiate for a lower sale price or require the seller to make
- Pests. Some lender may require a certificate from a qualified inspector
stating that the home is free from termites and other pests. You may want to reserve
the right to cancel the agreement or seek immediate treatment and repairs by the seller if
pests, and pest damage is found.
- Lead-Based Paint Hazards in Housing Built Before 1978. If you buy a home
built before 1978, you have certain rights concerning lead-based paint and lead poisoning
hazards. I will give you the EPA pamphlet "Protect Your Family From Lead in
Your Home" and other EPA-approved lead hazard information. I must find out and
tell you what the seller actually knows about the home´s lead-based paint or lead-based
paint hazards and give you any relevant records. The seller must attach a disclosure
form to the agreement of sale which will include a Lead Warning Statement. You, the
seller, and I will sign an acknowledgment that these notification requirements have been