Real Estate from Start to Finish

Buying or selling real estate (your home, condo, or land) is a long and intricate process.  Most people only do it a few times in their lives, and so they are nervous when it’s time to buy or sell again.

Don’t worry – we’ll come to your rescue!

The Real Estate Outline

Here is a list of what happens as you proceed through buying and selling real estate, so that you know what to expect.

Buyers

Sellers

Decide they want to buy a home Decide to sell their home
Review finances:

  • Contact lenders for information on how much you can borrow?
  • What can you can afford per month?
  • Save money for a down payment.
  • Get pre-approved for a loan.
  • Arrange debts to increase your credit scores.
Prepare Your Home:

  • Complete deferred maintenance
  • Update or remodel problem areas of the home
  • Stage the home for best showings
  • Maintain landscaping for curb appeal
Start your search for a home. Determine the location & features you want & need. Determine pricing and other points of negotiation, complete legal requirements for disclosure of defects, deed restrictions, etc.
Collect information on the top homes to determine the best fit and best pricing. Market the property to attract buyers.
Make an offer and negotiate terms. Receive an offer and negotiate terms.
Bring in professional home inspectors. Choose a closing agent.
Do not make any other large purchases that may affect your credit until after closing!(Don’t put a new living room set on your credit card) Wait…
Follow time line defined in contract:

  • Loan application
  • Inspections
  • Appraisal
  • Survey
  • Property Insurance
  • Other items as defined by your contract
  • Final walk-through
Keep an eye on the contract timeline and help keep things on track as needed…

  • Pack up your stuff.
  • Make any necessary repairs & touch-ups. (read your contract!)
  • Move out.
  • Leave property ‘swept clean’.
Review the closing statement to be sure the contract terms are reflected there correctly. Review the closing statement to be sure the contract terms are reflected there correctly.
Bring a bank or cashier’s check to closing to cover the balance due. Collect all house keys, garage door openers, manuals, and codes for access or security systems.DO NOT PACK THESE!
Sign paperwork – if you are getting a mortgage this will take a while.

  • HUD-1
  • Verification of identity
  • Mortgage (pledging the property to cover the loan)
  • Note (your personal guarantee to repay the loan)
  • Tax info
  • Disclosures
Sign paperwork – there are only a few papers to sign.

  • HUD-1
  • Verification of identity
  • Tax info (especially for a homesteaded property)
  • Deed (actual transfer of ownership)
  • Disclosures
Collect all house keys, garage door openers, manuals, and codes for access or security systems. Wait and wait while the buyer signs a mountain of paperwork and their lender approves it.
Be prepared to feel some anxiety before or after signing the paperwork. This is normal for many people. Be prepared to feel some anxiety before or after signing the paperwork. This is normal for many people.
Congratulations! Pop open the bubbly & celebrate. Congratulations! Go put the check in the bank, then celebrate.

After closing:

Be sure to apply for your homestead exemption with the county tax office. Also apply for Save Our Homes portability if you qualify. These can save you a lot of money in taxes each year. If this was your homestead you may qualify for Save Our Homes portability, which can give you be a significant tax savings each year. This moves your SOH deduction from your old home to your next home, but you have to file the right paperwork – talk to the local property appraiser.
Make sure the home owner’s association knows you own the home now.
Re-key the doors, and change any access codes.

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About Kathleen Seide

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