First time home buyer checklist
Buying your first home can be both exciting and nerve-wracking. But the process is actually very simple once you know the steps involved. Here is a handy checklist for all your first time home buyers out there.
1. Talk to a Lender and Get Mortgage Pre-Approval
The first step is to talk to a mortgage lender. They will let you know the maximum mortgage/house price you can get at the current interest rates, considering your income, debt, and credit score. They can also provide you with a pre-approval letter, which is a vital part of making offers. Most Sellers will not accept an offer (and take the property off the market) until the Buyer provides proof of financial capability.
2. Find Your Price Range
The lender will let you know your maximum house price and help you find different loan programs that are best for you. But, you need to find yourself what you are comfortable paying.
3. Start your Nashville or Franklin Home Search
These days, the typical home search starts on the internet. We have one of the most sophisticated, user-friendly tools right here on this site that will help you search the greater Nashville area MLS (RealTracs). Hover your mouse over the menu item “Nashville MLS” at the top of this page for all your options. And don’t forget: you can save your favorite listings, you can save your searches. And you can also set up email alerts to receive listings of all the new homes that come online that meet your search criteria.
4. Make an offer
So now we have found a house you like, so let’s make an offer. The offer consists typically of a standard form used by all Tennessee Realtors that spells out the offer price along with many other details we will talk about at the time we draw it up. Also, we will research the Nashville real estate market and neighborhood for similar homes to help you decide how much to offer.
5. The Option Period and a Home Inspection
After an offer is accepted by the Seller, you should schedule an inspection as soon as possible. You will typically have a 7-10 day option period in which you can get the main inspection as well as any other inspections (like foundation) or estimates done. With this information, you may decide to renegotiate with the Seller, or everything is as expected, and you move on.
Closing happens at the title company. You review the settlement statement, sign a lot of documents, pay the down-payment and/or closing costs, and get the keys.