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HOME BUYING PROCESS

Buying your dream home has never been this easy!

Key with wooden house keychain

10 Steps to Home Buying

Whether you’re purchasing a single-family house, a condo, or a new construction home, here are the 10 steps you need to know about home buying! Although the home buying process can be an exciting time, it can also be overwhelming. Allow an experienced Watson Agent to guide you through this process to ensure the best results!

Step 1

Check your credit!

See if you are financially ready for a new home! By law, you can get a free credit report once a year through annualcreditreport.com. Some banking apps even help you track your credit score throughout the year for free. A credit report pulls data from the three major credit-reporting agencies: Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. You will then receive a FICO credit score ranging from 350-850. The higher your credit score, the lower the interest rate on your mortgage.

Your credit score is based on:

  • Payment History
  • New credit
  • Types of credit
  • Amounts owed
  • Length of credit history
Step 2

Find a real estate agent

You will want to find an agent who is experienced and knowledgeable of today’s market, so they can guide you through the complex real estate process. Your agent is your lifeline and your dream home matchmaker - be sure you find a good one!

Some tips on finding your perfect real estate agent:

  • Ask around! Chances are, someone you know can refer you to an agent who has helped them.
  • Look online! Your best bet is watsonrealty.com/agents , not only because we love our agents, but because we hold them to a high standard, plus they are the highest producing in town!
  • Check social media! An agent who knows the ever-evolving market will most likely have a presence on social media. This can give insight into the clients they’ve helped, homes they’ve sold, and what their personal values are.
  • Read reviews! Just as you would check reviews for a new restaurant or hotel room, read about others’ experiences with a particular agent. Zillow, Realtor.com, and of course watsonrealty.com are great resources for Realtor reviews.
  • Call them up! Get to know your potential Realtor by giving them a call and letting them know your needs. You’ll find your matchmaker in no time
Step 3

Determine your budget

Use a mortgage calculator to determine your price range for your new home. Our most trusted lending company, San Joaquin Valley Mortgage can assist with all of your home financing needs.

Step 4

Get Pre-approved

Before you begin searching for a home, you will want to know the amount of financing for which you qualify, so you are searching in the right price range. Work with your lender and your Realtor to determine your best fit. Contact San Joaquin Valley Mortgage to get started.

Website: sjvalleymortgage.com

Phone Number: 661.847.4800

Step 5

Start looking at homes

Now comes the fun part - house hunting! It helps to make a list of which features you would like to see in your new home and a list of your deal breakers. Once you have a completed list of wants and needs, go over it with your Realtor, so they can gather some properties for you to view. This is your opportunity to explore your options and decide where you want to start making memories.

Step 6

Make an offer

Once you’ve found the one, it’s time to get down to business. Your Realtor will help you evaluate comparable listings in the area to determine the right offer amount. A good rule of thumb is to base your offer on the competitiveness of the market - the more competitive the market, the closer to asking price you should be. This is a reason why you should have a great Realtor by your side.

Step 7

Home inspection

Once your offer has been accepted, we advise you to get a home inspection! A home inspection will educate you about the house and help you decide if you really want to pay for the necessary repairs. It’s also a great way to leverage your offer depending on the results of the inspection report.

Step 8

Have the home appraised

An appraisal is an unbiased professional opinion of a home’s value, and it is used to determine whether the home’s contract price is appropriate given the home’s condition, features, and location. Your lender will arrange this, as they want to make sure you are not over-borrowing.

Step 9

Closing time

The big day is finally here! At closing, you will sign all the paperwork required to complete the purchase of your new home. It will typically take a day or two for your loan to fund after your paperwork has been signed.

Step 10

Welcome Home!

You did it! You’re a homeowner now! Your Realtor will hand you the keys to your new home, and you can begin your new chapter. Be sure to leave a review for your Realtor and/or refer them to friends if you had an exceptional experience working with them. This helps their business tremendously. Also, keep your Realtor in mind if you ever plan to sell your home. Now, go make some memories in your new place!

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