Buying or selling a home in Annapolis? Berkshire Hathaway Home Services PenFed Realty can help.

With a little planning ahead of time, purchasing a home isn't all that complicated, but the event intimidates a lot of people. So they'll understand exactly what to expect, I like to supply buyers with a road map of the entire deal. Here are my nine steps to purchasing a home. Should you have any questions regarding any of this information or if you're ready to get started, simply contact me here or e-mail me at .

Step 1 – Get ready to purchase a home
There are several things you'll want to do prior to beginning your home search. When you begin your search, you'll probably want to create an outline of items you need to have, get a feel for what neighborhoods you'd like to live in, and start planning your budget. A good principle to follow is that your mortgage payment should be less than or around 30 percent of your net monthly income.

Step 2 – Contact a real estate agent in Annapolis
That's where I can help. I'd like to book a time to meet with you and communicate with you regarding your real estate needs and get an idea of your plans for the future. We'll discuss neighborhoods, school districts in the Annapolis area, the mortgage industry, and any other economic factors that may potentially affect your purchase today or in the future.

In addition, I'll help you begin the loan process. There are some excellent mortgage professionals in Annapolis, and I work with a lot of them, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They can assist you in deciding which kind of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Start looking for a home
Following our initial meeting, I'll start searching for available houses on the market that suit your needs. I'll research many of the homes and reject the bad ones, and then we'll book appointments to view the homes when it's convenient for you.

When we view homes, I'll identify good features, as well as negative ones. I'll even ask you to talk about things you like and dislike. For the most part, buyers update their wish list as we tour houses and some things become more essential than others. If that's the situation, I'll search all the listings one more time and trim it down to the house you've been waiting for.

Step 4 – Know the market
Your agent's awareness of the Annapolis housing market is a leading component in your home search. And I can assure you I'm informed of all the schools and neighborhoods, and I will alert you to which districts are "hot" and warrant immediate action and others that are "cold" and allow for cautiousness.

When we tour houses, I'll let you know when the seller's list price has room for negotiation and when I believe the home is "priced to sell." Any REALTOR in Annapolis will claim to truly understand the housing market, but trust your instincts, and be sure to ask plenty of questions. If it appears they don't know everything, contact me at 410-647-8000 ext. 817 or e-mail me at , and I'll be happy to answer your questions. My market knowledge will help you stay a step ahead through the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find the house you've been looking for
I'm sure we'll find your dream home in the Annapolis area. When we do, I'll carefully develop your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be tailored keeping your needs in mind and the home, including a lot of contingencies, such as obtaining financing, completing the inspection, and a clean title.

When we send in your purchase offer, most likely you'll want to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit submitted to a seller to secure the offer to buy the property. The amount is often applied to the cost of closing. If your offer is accepted, we should close on the home within 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows sufficient time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
A lot of contracts aren't closed on the beginning offer. It's widely common to receive a counter offer. Don't let this intimidate you. We'll discuss whether or not to consent to the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or refuse the seller's offer and move on.

Market circumstances will play a vital role in how aggressively we negotiate the deal. In addition, we'll work within your financing constraints. And when it's all said and done, we'll create a contract that is best for you.

Step 7 – Get financing
Once we sign the final contract, you'll begin working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. It shouldn't take much time at all if you've been pre-qualified, but you'll want to stay in close contact with your lender. And I'll look after all the property information your lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
Your mortgage lender will send you a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing closing costs within three days of taking your application. You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing your closing costs from your lender within three days of getting your application. This estimate rests on the loan amount, and RESPA requirements order that it has to contain all closing costs and be within a tight range of accuracy. I'll go over the estimate and let you know if it all looks okay.

Then we'll close on your home. This will most likely happen at a title company or escrow office and will likely be a smooth and relaxed occurrence.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! It's time to move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything, be sure to call me at 410-647-8000 ext. 817 or e-mail me at .

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