The Homebuyer’s Guide

11 steps to buy a house

The Home Buying Process

Many people think you need to find your house before you get approved for your loan. In that past that may have been how it was done, and that’s how the Homebuyer’s Guide outlines it – but it’s not necessarily the most thoughtful way to go about it. Below are 11 more productive steps to buy a house.

Get Pre-Approved

Homebuyer’s Guide

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau of the U.S. government issues an extensive booklet called a Homebuyer’s Guide that lenders must give to borrowers. While it explains the process of getting and closing a mortgage to buy a home, it’s not the most straightforward document to read and digest. To help you understand the complex processes described in the booklet, the vital information from that document is listed below.

If you have additional questions, call me at 828-348-1907, and I’d be happy to help break it down for you.

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According to the Homebuyer’s Guide, finding the right mortgage is an essential step in the process, even more so than finding the house. The type of mortgage you choose affects every other aspect of your purchase, from the closing costs to your monthly payment. Work with a lender — such as an independent mortgage lender — to sort through your options to find your match.

11 Productive Steps Toward Owning a Home

Understanding the Process

In most states, including North Carolina, you’ll find many types of mortgage loans to choose from. Some, like VA loans and USDA loans, don’t require down payments. Others, like renovation and FHA 203k loans, have special requirements. Once you choose the loan that works for you, you’ll have a much better idea of how much money you’ll need up-front to purchase your new home.

1. Decide when you are ready to buy a home. Whether it’s your first home, a second home, or an investment property, weigh the pros and cons before deciding what you’re looking for.

2. Shop for a mortgage lender. Find someone who speaks your language and offers you alternatives. With their help, determine the loan that fits your situation.

3. Pre-apply for a mortgage — or pre-qualify with GoPrime Mortgage, Inc. This step will let you know exactly how much house you can afford. During this process, determine how much you’re willing to spend per month on your mortgage.

4. Find a real estate agent. Find an agent who listens to what you want before showing you any houses. Make sure you tell the agent that you’ve been pre-approved (or preapproved) to move the process along.

5. Choose a house and negotiate a price. When you know how much you can borrow, you can confidently make an offer. Sellers understand that you’re serious if you’ve been pre-approved. If your bid is contingent on selling your current home, make sure that process is underway.

6. Apply for a mortgage loan. If your lender has done their work, there should be no surprises in this step.

7. Have the house inspected. The home inspection is necessary to feel assured that everything works, and there are no surprises (such as mold, structural damage, or insect infestation).

8. Hire needed services. When buying a home, you may need to find an attorney, an escrow company, insurance company, and or services. If you are paying for these services yourself, you can choose whom to hire. At this point, take steps to learn how much your closing costs will be.

9. Do a final walk-through. Once your loan is approved, and you’ve lined up all the services you’ll need, walk through the house one final time, looking for problems and imagining what it will look like after you move in.

10. Close on the purchase. The closing is an exciting time and a trying time, as you’ll have to sign many documents. Please make sure you understand everything you’re signing, but remember when it’s over, you’ll be the proud owners of a new home.

11. Move into your new home. Most of the time, you get the keys and can move in right after closing, but sometimes you agree to wait, either for the seller or for yourself.

Don’t Forget to Consider Additional Costs

The Homebuyer’s Guide reminds you that you’ll have other costs to consider besides your monthly mortgage payment, including the principal and interest. You’ll also be responsible for your real estate taxes, which can vary wildly depending on the state and city you are moving into. Typically, those taxes are included in your monthly payment.

Another cost to include is insurance. Some mortgage loan types require that you carry (and pay for) mortgage insurance, which protects the lender if you were to ever default on the loan. Then there’s homeowner’s insurance, which protects you in case of an accident or other damage to the home. Mortgage lenders require you to carry homeowner’s insurance, although you can choose to obtain it from your agent.

The Loan Estimate (LE)

Your independent mortgage lender must give you a Loan Estimate within three business days of receiving your mortgage application. The LE replaces the Good Faith Estimate (GFE) and Truth in Lending disclosure. It specifies the loan amount, interest rate, loan term, closing cost estimate, and much more information. It doesn’t require you to do business with that lender.

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What Our Clients Are Saying

Zachery Adam at GoPrime Mortgage made my first time home purchase as seamless and easy as possible. Not only is he very diligent and effective in his work, but he also genuinely cares about supporting you through the process of a home purchase. You can’t find such great service anywhere else! I highly recommend him and GoPrime as a whole.

Sharlette W.

I am a younger first-time home buyer and Zachery made the home mortgage process very easy and stress-free for me. I received a very competitive interest rate considering my age and younger credit history during a time of rising interest rates. Zach and Aaron were very communicative and helped me feel confident in the process. They are calm, trustworthy people you can trust to quickly answer any questions you will have. Overall, securing the mortgage and obtaining the appraisal was very easy, and I am very grateful for Zach’s help throughout the process. Since the home buying process was as stress-free as possible, I am sure I will be using GoPrime again in a few years if I want to purchase another home.

Caitlin

As first time home buyers, my wife and I were so thrilled to work with Zack and his team at GoPrime Mortgage. He was patient, thorough, and made it very easy for us to get through the process. I would not hesitate to recommend Zack & GoPrime Mortgage at all, especially if the thought of buying a house seems overwhelming. After putting in an offer just 30 days ago, we closed today—on time, and with no hassles. Many thanks Zack & co!

Kevin W.

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