Are you looking to purchase a home in Gloucester? Southern Trade Realty, Inc. can help.

Buying a home can be stressful for many people. However, with a bit of up-front planning, it isn't all that hard. I like to supply buyers with a road map of the entire deal so they understand exactly what to expect. Here are my nine steps to purchasing a home. Should you have any questions about any of this information or if you're ready to get started, just contact me here or e-mail me at .

Step 1 – Prepare to buy
There are a lot of things you need to contemplate before you look for a home. You'll probably want to make an index of items you want, get a feeling for what school districts and neighborhoods you want to live in, and begin planning around your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is less than or close to 30 percent of your monthly income is a good rule of thumb to adhere to.

Step 2 – Get in touch with a real estate agent in Gloucester
This is where I can help. I'd love to schedule a time to get together with you and speak with you about why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your future plans. We'll discuss everything from neighborhoods, schools in the Gloucester area, the mortgage and housing industries, to any other economic factors that could affect your purchase today or in the future.

In addition, I'll help you facilitate the loan process. Southern Trade Realty, Inc. partners with some of Gloucester's finest mortgage professionals, so you'll be in great hands. They'll assist you with deciding which kind of loan is best for you and help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Start house hunting
Following our initial meeting, I'll start searching for houses on the market that are a great fit for you. I'll research most of the houses and eliminate the duds, and then we'll set up appointments to view the houses when it's convenient for you.

As we view the homes, I'll point out positive features, as well as bad ones. I'll even ask you to talk about things you like and dislike. Oftentimes, buyers amend their must-have list as we view houses and some items become far more important than others. If that's the case, I'll look through the listings another time and trim it down to the house you've been waiting for.

Step 4 – Understand the housing market
My understanding of the Gloucester housing market is a crucial component in your house search. I'm mindful of all the schools and neighborhoods, and I can alert you to what districts are "hot" and call for prompt action and the ones that are "cool" and allow for careful analysis.

As we tour houses, I'll let you know when the seller's list price has room for negotiation and also when I know the home is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be mindful and make sure you ask lots of questions. Any REALTOR in Gloucester will convince you they comprehend the market. If it seems like they don't know everything, contact me at (804) 694-3113 or e-mail me at , and I'd be happy to answer any questions you have. My understanding of the market will keep you a step above the rest throughout the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find your dream home
I'm sure we'll find your dream home in Gloucester. When we do, I'll thoroughly develop your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be made to suit your needs and the home. We'll include several contingencies, such as acquiring financing, carrying out the inspection, and a clear title.

When we send in your purchase offer, you'll want to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit made to a home seller to secure the offer to purchase the property. The amount is typically applied to the closing costs. If your offer is accepted by the seller, we should close within 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows plenty of time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
Most deals aren't closed on the first offer, and it's widely common to receive a counter offer. But don't let it alarm you. We'll talk about whether or not to agree to the counter offer, submit our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and go on.

Market circumstances determine how aggressively we negotiate the contract. We'll also work within your financing limits. And at the end of the day, we'll formulate a deal that works well for you.

Step 7 – Secure a loan
Upon completion of the contract, you'll start working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. If you're pre-approved, this shouldn't take much time at all. But you should to keep in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll deal with all the property information your mortgage lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing your closing costs from your mortgage lender within three days of accepting your loan application. The estimate depends on the loan amount, and RESPA requirements require that it has to involve all closing costs and be within a close range of accuracy. I'll examine the estimate and let you know if everything looks adequate.

Then we'll close on your house. This should occur at a title company or escrow office and will probably be a smooth and hassle-free affair.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, be sure to call me at (804) 694-3113 or e-mail me at .

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