Are you looking to start your Phoenix home search and not sure how to get started or what to expect? It is not as scary or difficult as you think, the best advice I can give you will be to do your homework, learn about what loan programs are out there that will best fit your situation and build on that. If you can qualify for a $350,000 loan but are more comfortable with a payment on a $275,000 loan amount, go with that payment. Find a home that fits in the middle of your budget if you can, you don’t always have to buy at the top of what you qualify for. You want to make sure you get a strong pre-approval before you start looking for a home. 9 times out of 10 people will start looking for homes before they are pre-qualified and will usually find the home they want and cannot make an offer until they get qualified and the home will be gone. With current interest rates rising and the housing market prices continuing to rise, it is best to have all your ducks in a row before you buy. Once you have an idea of how much you can afford, now its time to hire a knowledgeable REALTOR. You can interview who you work with, asking them about certain areas, its best to work with Realtors that know the area, or atleast have a good idea about that area, especially if you are moving to an area that you don’t know much about. You will get a lot of Realtors claiming that they are experts of a particular area, ask them for testimonials or what makes them an expert in that area, GOOGLE THEM. Once you find a Realtor that fits your fancy, use them, they will set you up on a custom MLS Portal based on your criteria and probably an automated email that will send you new listings.
Location, Location, Location, I am sure you have heard of the phrase! Well it’s true!
A majority of the homes in Phoenix old and new were built by the same builders, so as the homes may have similar layouts the parts of town will be totally different. Metro-Phoenix consists of multiple cities or suburbs such as Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Cave Creek, Chandler, Gilbert, etc.. multiple cities with numerous subdivisions and popular communities. Downtown Phoenix has up and coming communities or older areas getting a new fresh facelift. Once you find a lender that has qualified you, a Realtor that knows and has explained the Purchase contract with you that has found you the home of your dreams or just a starter home to build from, your “Expert Realtor” will pull area sales, and you will write an offer based on the sales and what that particular home is worth to you. Once Accepted, this is what you can expect:
Opening Escrow with Title Company: Deposit Earnest Money ASAP
10 Day Inspection Period to perform all home inspections and Research: starts the day after acceptance, you will order a home inspection which you will have to pay for upfront. You will ask for any repairs needed and give the seller the opportunity to correct them with a Buyer Inspection Seller Response Form or (BINSR). The Seller can do them, not do them, or do a couple of them if you request any, you can accept the BINSR or Cancel the Contract if you are not happy with their response. You Have 10 Days to deliver the Buyer Inspection Seller Response Form (Inspection Report Repairs). The Seller has 5 Days to Respond. Then you have 5 Days to respond in turn meaning you may cancel or go forward with their response. Inspection Period can take 20 days if all response times are in affect.
The Seller will provide a Seller Property Disclosure Statement (SPDS):
Which lists everything known by seller that is wrong with the home or that has been repaired or changed.
(Seller Disclosure) You will review and sign.
Title will send you HOA CC&Rs: the rules and regulations of the HOA, if you disapprove or see something you dislike, you can cancel contract. You have 5 days after you receive them.
Your Lender will order Appraisal: if Appraisal comes in you are good, if not we have to renegotiate the sales price and terms.
Doc Signing: 3 Days Prior to the Close of Escrow (COE) You Will Sign your loan documents( Docs) with the Title Company. You will see the Closing Disclosure that will Display the breakdown of numbers, fees, lender & title, credits, etc.
Close of Escrow Date (COE): The Lender will Fund the Loan, send a wire transfer to the title company and they will disburse the funds to the banks and all parties then send it to Maricopa County Recorders Office for recordation.
Once Recorded: You get the Keys from your Realtor and now it’s official you are a New Home Owner!!! YAY
My final words of wisdom ~ This is the basic home buying process, time frames may change based on new real estate contract amendments. Ask questions, no question is a dumb question, especially when you are making one of the most expensive purchases of your life.
Do your homework and your research!!