Key things to know that will make your home buying a fruitful experience.
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A few examples that will give you the edge in your home purchase:
First: The written offer is the foundation of a real estate transaction
-Contingencies (a help or a hindrance) too many can kill the deal but others protect your purchase transaction. Important to know what to include from the start and at what stage you should ask for the flat screen TV to be included.
-Home Inspections (is it a Leverage or Not) Danger, Danger, Will Robinson! (see negotiating tips).
-Negotiating tips (an objective realtor in your corner can keep a deal together if and when Buyer and Seller butt heads over home inspection issues). Left to their own devices buyers and sellers have been known to come to blows and walk away from a deal over a few hundred dollars.
-Pre-approval letter (single family or condo). It is important to know that the amount you are approved for is generally based on a single family home. (The amount a bank will lend for a Condo, as a rule of thumb, can be 10% less than a single family home, as the condo fees are added to your debt ratio, and affect the amount the bank will lend. i.e. A $400K SF loan approval can be a $360K condo approval. Ask your lender. No nasty surprises please.)
-Purchase and Sale agreement. All information pertaining to the transaction are spelled out in this document; if it is not in there don't expect it to happen. The chandelier, the hot tub, the refrigerator etc. all have to be specified. Only an attorney can write language into a P&S so it is important that both buyer and seller have representation.
-Closing Date. Your loan and lock-in rate are important issues to keep in mind. You may want an extended closing for convenience but your rate may not be guaranteed beyond a certain date. (A 45 day rate lock is typical but some lenders offer 60 day rate locks.)
-Withdrawing an offer (protecting your deposit) There are proper procedures that have to be followed if you are withdrawing an offer or the seller can claim the deposit as damages.
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