Are you contemplating buying your home in Rice Lake?

Buying a home is an intimidating event for many people, but it's not all that complicated with a little planning ahead of time. So they understand exactly what they can expect, I will supply buyers with a road map of the whole deal. These are my nine steps to purchasing a home. Should you have questions regarding any of this information or if you're ready to get started, you can contact me here or e-mail me at .

Step 1 – Prepare to buy a home
There are several things you need to consider prior to beginning your home search. You'll want to make an outline of items you need, get a feel for what neighborhoods and school districts you want to live in, and begin planning your budget. Keeping your mortgage payment less than 30 percent of your monthly income is a good rule to adhere to.

Step 2 – Connect with a real estate agent in Rice Lake
This is where RE/MAX Advantage comes in. I'd be more than happy to set up a time to meet with you and communicate with you about why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your future plans. We'll talk about neighborhoods, schools in the Rice Lake area, the mortgage industry, and any other economic factors that could affect your buying decision today or in the future.

In addition, I'll assist you with getting started on your loan. There are some very good mortgage professionals in Rice Lake, and I work with a lot of them, so you're in great hands. They'll assist you with choosing which type of loan is best for you and help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Begin looking for a home
After we meet, I'll begin looking for houses on the market that are good for you. I'll preview most of the houses and eliminate the duds, and then we'll book appointments to tour the homes when it's most convenient for you.

When we tour houses, I'll identify good features, as well as bad ones. I'll also ask you to talk about things you like and don't like. It's pretty common for buyers to amend their must-have list as we view houses and some features become far more necessary than others. If that's the case, I'll look through all the listings again and narrow it down to the home you've been waiting for.

Step 4 – Know the housing market
An agent's awareness of the Rice Lake housing market is a necessary component in your house search. And I can assure you I'm informed of all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I'll alert you to which neighborhoods are "hot" and call for prompt action and some that are "cool" and allow for cautiousness.

As we tour houses, I'll let you know when the list price has room for bargaining and also when I know the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be on guard and be sure to ask lots of questions. Every real estate agent will convince you they understand the market. If things don't add up, contact me at (715) 736-7000 or e-mail me at , and I'll be happy to answer any questions you may have. My market knowledge will help you stay a step above the rest through the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find the home you've been looking for
We'll find your dream home in Rice Lake, and when we do, I'll meticulously develop your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be tailored with your needs in mind and the home, including a lot of contingencies, such as getting financing, finishing the inspection, and a clean title.

Upon sending in your purchase offer, you'll likely want to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit made to the seller to secure an offer to buy the property. The amount is usually put towards the closing costs. If the offer is accepted, we should close on the home about 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows plenty of time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
Most deals don't close on the beginning offer. It's extremely common to receive a counter offer. But don't let it intimidate you. We'll figure out whether or not to accept the counter offer, submit our own counter offer, or reject the seller's offer and go on.

Market conditions determine how aggressively we negotiate the deal. We'll also work within your budget. And at the end of the day, we'll compose a contract that's best for you.

Step 7 – Obtain your loan
Once we sign the final deal, you'll begin working with your lender to close the loan. This won't be a long process at all if you're pre-approved, but you should to stay in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll manage all the property information your mortgage lender will need to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) detailing your closing costs from your lender within three days of taking your application. The estimate is formed from the loan amount, and RESPA requirements require that it has to include all closing costs and be within a tight range of accuracy. I'll analyze the estimate and let you know if it all looks all right.

Then we'll close on your house. This will most often occur at a title company or escrow office and will most often be a smooth and relaxing occurrence.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you have any questions, just contact me at (715) 736-7000 or e-mail me at .

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