10 Steps to Buying a Home in Albuquerque
Thinking about buying a home in the Albuquerque area? The process of purchasing a home can seem a little complicated, especially if you're not sure what to expect. But actually, there are really only 10 main steps to buying! Here's how to get from searching to SOLD!
How to Buy a Home in Albuquerque
Step 1: Get preapproved for a loan
One of the most important things you can do when buying is to start talking to lenders and get preapproved for a loan. Not only will this help you set your budget and show you how much loan you can afford, it'll also help to show sellers that you're a serious and qualified buyer.
Step 2: Find a great local agent
Next step: finding an agent. You'll want to shop around a bit before deciding on one agent. Be sure to ask lots of questions about experience, availability, and communication styles. You want to work with an agent who has the skills and know-how to help you out but who you also feel comfortable talking to.
Step 3: Make a wants and needs list
Next, take some time to think about what you really need and want in a home. It's important to distinguish what you actually need from the things you want, because chances are, you won't get absolutely everything you want. Be sure all your needs are met before checking off any wants.
Step 4: Start searching
Next, use an online search tool to set criteria for your home search. Be sure to focus on your needs before you wants. If a home doesn't meet all your needs, it's not the right home! This will help you quickly narrow down houses and avoid burnout from trying to visit too many homes at once.
Step 5: Make an offer
When you find a home you love, you and your agent will work together to write a purchase agreement. This legal contract contains a lot more than just a price—it also outlines dates, contingencies, down payments, financing, and much more. You should also include your preapproval letter with your offer.
Step 6: Negotiate the best price
Once you submit your offer, the seller has three options: they can accept the offer, they can refuse the offer, or they can submit a counteroffer with modified terms. Should they choose to counter, the ball's back in your court and you have the same three options—accept, decline, counter. This can go back and forth for a bit or it can be fairly quick.
Step 7: Get a home inspection
Next, an inspector will come to take a close look at the house, from roof to foundation, attic to basement. The inspector will be on the lookout for any potential maintenance or foundational issues that might pose a problem down the road or require expensive fixes. Based on what is found in the inspection, you may ask the seller to make repairs, reduce the price, or issue credits towards closing costs.
Step 8: Finish your due diligence
In addition to a home inspection, your lender will probably require a few other examinations, like an appraisal and title check. An appraiser will use the value of recently sold houses to determine the value of your home—to ensure that it's at least worth as much as you'll be financing. Title checks make sure that no one else could have a claim to the property.
Step 9: Finalize your loan
In the next few weeks, you'll likely be digging up and faxing or uploading a lot of personal and financial paperwork. It can be a little tedious, but your lender is just being thorough. They want to be sure there's nothing in your history or attached to your credit that might pose a problem with your loan. It might seem invasive, but it's all part of the approval process.
Step 10: Sign, pay & close!
Finally... closing day! On a predetermined date, you, your agent, your lender, and possibly the seller and their agent, will meet to sign the last of the paperwork. You'll pay your closing costs and down payment in certified funds and, finally, get the keys to your new home!
Ready to Buy in Albuquerque?
Are you thinking about making a move in the Albuquerque area? We'd love to help! Contact the Feils today to learn more about how we can put our experience, our local knowledge, and our passion for all things real estate to work for you.