What to Do After You’ve Found a Home You Love

The Santistevan Group


There’s nothing like seeing a home in person and knowing that it’s the one for you but you may still have a way to go before the property is yours. While there’s no sure-fire way to guarantee the sale goes through, these practical real estate tips for buyers you’ll read about will provide you an idea of how to best move forward with a real estate purchase.

1. Assess your finances


Unless you’re planning to pay cash for a home, you will have to secure a loan in order for the sale to go through. You can leverage an online mortgage calculator to get a ballpark idea of what you might be willing to spend. An online mortgage calculator will take into account the sales price of the home along with the current interest rate and the amount of cash you’ll bring to the equation in the form of a down payment.

From there, if you haven’t already done so, get pre-approved or pre-qualified for a loan. While this doesn’t guarantee that you’ll receive the loan without any issues, it’s a positive step in the right direction. The seller may want confirmation that you’re pre-approved before they sign a contract to sell you their home. When you’re pre-qualified, you’ll receive a letter with a specific loan amount, and you can share this with your realtor or the seller if asked. While there are several websites that will let you know if you pre-qualify or not, most experienced real estate Agents will recommend speaking with an individual lender. They should be able to provide options based on your unique context and circumstances, and they will be able to give you more accurate information than what you’ll often find online.

2. Assess the home’s condition


You’ve seen the home in person at this point, and you may like what you see. However, you don’t know what may be going on behind the walls or under the foundation. Regardless of whether or not your contract requires an inspection, you should have one completed before you sign a contract (or before the option period ends). The inspector will thoroughly review the house and let you know if there are any structural, mechanical, or foundational concerns that you should be aware of. At this point, you can either renegotiate the deal with the seller or you can walk away from the deal entirely.

3. Make a competitive offer

This is especially important in a seller’s market. Look for clues that tell you what level of competition you may have for the home. Assess the current state of the market, and see what you can learn based on current trends. If homes frequently sell above the asking price, or if they often receive multiple offers, you may have to exceed the seller’s asking price in order for them to accept your offer.

On the other hand, if the home has already spent several weeks or months on the market, or if you know that the seller has lowered the price, it’s unlikely that you’ll have to outbid another potential suitor. In this situation, you may have some room to negotiate. You can offer a price below asking, or you can ask for non-financial considerations such as unattached assets in the home.

4. Understand the closing process


When a seller agrees to a deal to sell a home to a potential buyer, the home goes “under contract.” Usually, the closing day happens 30 to 45 days after the contract is initially signed. During this time, several things happen. In addition to the home inspection (which was discussed earlier), the home must appraise for a number close to the selling price. If the home doesn’t appraise, the lender will be unable to provide the necessary funds for the sale to complete. In some cases, the buyer may be able to bring more cash to the table in order to bridge the gap between what the lender is willing to provide and what the home is actually sold for. This happens often in competitive markets where homes sell for higher than market value. 

Another important aspect of closing is the exchange of the home title. The home title is the legal document that grants ownership of the land and the property. Before a title changes hands, a title company must investigate the history of the land and the property to ensure that the seller legally owns the home. Issues are uncommon, but they must be resolved before the buyer can claim ownership of the property. Many home contracts include a title contingency that allows the buyer to walk away from the contract without penalty if there are issues with securing the title.

5. Work with a skilled local Realtor

Perhaps you feel overwhelmed with all of this information. It’s understandable, since selling a home is a massive undertaking. The good news is that you don’t have to go through this process alone. Realtors immerse themselves daily into the world of buying and selling homes, and they are familiar with the process inside and out. They know how to craft a competitive offer for a home that will grab the seller’s attention. They are well aware of the current state of the housing market and can use this information to their advantage when trying to secure a deal. They have written and reviewed countless home contracts, and they will help you prepare for everything you’ll experience on closing day.

For those shopping for houses for sale in Chandler, many people find that the talented Proerty Specialists with The Santistevan Group are incredibly helpful throughout the process. Led by Mike and Mary Jo Santistevan, they are consistently ranked as one of the top-producing groups in the entire Phoenix area. They are well-known among their clients for being knowledgeable, trustworthy, and reliable, and they would enjoy helping you find and purchase your ideal Phoenix-area home.



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