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BUYING A HOME IN THE SOUTH BAY
The home buying process can be intimidating, even if you’ve bought a home before, but especially if this is your first home purchase. Our website is a great place to start because it is always up to date, unlike many of the national real estate portals that offer outdated or inaccurate information. It also is hyper-focused on our local real estate market. You can search for homes confidently because our website is updated every 15 minutes, directly from the same source that Realtors use, the California Regional Multiple Listing Service.
SEARCHING FOR HOMES
Our website is easy to use which means you can find the perfect home with the least amount of effort. You can create your own customized searches with specific criteria that are important to you. Price range, neighborhoods, bedrooms, baths, square footage are just a few of the parameters you can set. You’ll get regular updates by email as new homes on the market. Use the Advanced Search feature to create a custom search. If you are new to the South Bay and need help getting started, just contact us, we can recommend the best neighborhoods in your price range. We’ve been helping families buy and sell their homes for decades, we are here to help.
When you are ready, you’ll want to view the homes that interest you in person. With a few mouse clicks or a phone call you can schedule an appointment with one of our experienced agents to view any home that looks promising. Based on your search criteria, we will also be able recommend other homes that you might like.
An essential first step in the home buying process is talking with an experienced loan broker. We can connect you with a mortgage professional who will be able to determine how much you can borrow based on your income level, current debts, occupation, and credit history. They will answer all your questions about loan options and get you prequalified. With a preapproval letter in hand, you will be able to search for homes with confidence and be ready to submit an offer once you have found the right home.
NEGOTIATING YOUR OFFER
You’ve found the perfect home! Now what? Prior to writing an offer on that home, we can provide an analysis of similar homes that have recently sold in the same neighborhood. Based on these “comps” we can formulate a strategy to submit a successful bid. It isn’t always the highest price that gets accepted by a seller, we know how to make your offer more appealing to sellers. The reputation we have earned over many years as capable, honest and cooperative agents will also influence sellers and their agents to want to work with us.
Once your offer is accepted we’ll “open escrow”. An escrow officer will manage the paperwork involved in buying a home. They are the neutral third party that handles the many details involved in purchasing a home. Recording the deed, managing the payoff of existing loans on the property and coordinating with the title company to record the deed are just a few of their responsibilities. They will also help you sign the loan documents for your new loan and manage your deposit and down payment.
You’ll have a period of time after your offer is accepted, usually 17 days, to investigate the condition of the property. We can recommend several qualified inspectors who will spend several hours going over the home to determine its current condition. It is also common to have even more detailed inspections of the roof, fireplace, sewer line and foundation. We can help you decide whether these additional inspections are warranted. Sometimes there are issues identified by the inspections that need to be repaired. You’ll have four options at this point, you can accept the home in its current condition, ask the seller to repair the items, receive a credit from the seller for the estimated cost of the repair or cancel the transaction and look for another home.
The home inspection will give you assurance that there are no hidden defects that will surprise you once you move in. But it is still possible that something will go wrong with your new home. A home warranty is a type of insurance policy that will protect you against many repair issues experienced by home owners. The policy is in force in the first year of your home ownership. Frequently we can negotiate that the seller include this policy in the purchase price of the home.
Once all the paperwork is done, all the inspections are performed, your loan is approved and the deed is recorded you will then be a homeowner! The home buying process is interesting and complicated but ultimately very exciting. We’ll shepherd you through the details, explaining the process as it unfolds and happily hand you the keys to your new home when it’s all done. Contact us today, we are ready to help.