Buying a home can be stressful! It is my job to make that stress go away. You can help with that, too, by entering into this situation with as much knowledge and understanding as possible. There are multiple steps which comprise the typical real estate transaction. The exact process is not the same for all transactions; however, the following steps are common and/or required:


Step 1: Know your buying power by contacting a mortgage lender

A very important initial step in the home buying process is to contact a lender for the purpose of determining your buying power. This will give you an idea of what you are qualified to purchase and help guide your property search to homes which are a good fit for your situation.


Step 2: Search for the right property

You and I will search for the perfect property based on your desired criteria.


Step 3: Make an offer on the right property

We will submit a written offer and negotiations will occur between you and the Seller regarding the price and/or terms of the contract.


Step 4: Ratified Contract and Earnest Money Deposit

Once the terms and conditions are agreed upon, we will have a ratified contract. At this time, you will be required to submit your earnest money deposit to my firm, Roy Wheeler Realty Co.


Step 5: Selecting a Closing Attorney/Agent

You will need to select a Closing Attorney/Agent. I strongly recommend selecting a local Closing Attorney rather than simply an agent should any legal issues become present during the closing process. These problems include things such as title issues or should a party to the transaction attempt to terminate the contract without just cause. A Closing Attorney is able to provide legal assistance without you having to seek outside representation from a party not familiar with the transaction. Once you choose a Closing Attorney, I am able to forward copies of all contracts and documents to them. This will allow them to avoid any delays in the closing process.


Step 6: Review the HOA Disclosure Packet

Should the property be located in a community with a Homeowner’s Association (HOA) and/or condominium association, the Seller is required to provide the Buyer with a disclosure packet from the community’s HOA and/or condominium association. It is required by law that the Seller provide these packets to the potential Buyer. Typically, the cost of these packets will be the responsibility of the Seller. You will have an opportunity to terminate the contract based on these packets, which are independent of one another from a termination perspective. Once these packets are delivered to you and/or me, you will have a 3-day period of rescission based upon information included in each separate packet. These are two separate parts of the transaction and should not be considered to be dependent upon one another.


Step 7: Conduct the Home Inspection

The Buyer will, more than likely, schedule a time to conduct a home inspection. This is strongly recommended and an aspect of the home-buying process that should not be waived. Typically, the Buyer will have between 10 to 14 days from the date of contract ratification to have the home inspection conducted and request any repairs and/or remedies. Should the Buyer request any repairs and/or remedies be conducted by the Seller, we will submit to the Seller a document titled “Home Inspection Removal of Contingency Addendum to Residential Contract of Purchase” (HIRCA) (document provided above). The Seller will typically have 3-5 days to respond to the Buyer’s request. Many deals can fall apart at this stage and we must determine our strategy regarding what items you will request the Seller to repair and/or remedy. A good strategy here is to request repair and/or remedy of items which present a safety concern or could lead to future deterioration of the property/structure.


Step 8: Negotiate the results of the Home Inspection

Once all parties agree upon the removal of the home inspection contingency, the Seller will either repair or remedy the items agreed upon. Another manner by which this contingency is removed is through the Seller offering funds in lieu of performing the repairs themselves.


Step 9: Signing the Closing Documents

Your Closing Attorney will send you all documents requiring signature in order to close the transaction. You will need to sign all documents and perform all tasks asked of you by your Closing Attorney.


Step 10: You own the property!

The property deed will be recorded at the local courthouse. At this point, the transaction is closed and ownership of the property has transferred. Congratulations, you own the property!!!