Step 1: Get pre-approved
Once you've decided that you want to buy a home, you should determine what payments you can comfortably afford. We provides many tools such as an affordability calculator that give you a general idea of what your payments would be, but to get a better idea of the price range of homes to view, you should get pre-approved. A pre-approval is beneficial in many ways. First, it gives you an idea of what loan amount and purchase price you can afford. Second, it strengthens your offer to the seller and the seller's real estate agent. Third, by getting pre-approved, you're getting a jump start on the approval process. Once you find your home and open escrow, you're already a few steps ahead. Get pre-approved today.
Step 2: Determine which mortgage loan best suits your needs
There are many loan options available from first-time buyer programs to traditional conventional, jumbo, and FHA loans. There are 30 year and 15 year fixed loans as well as adjustable and hybrid loans such as a 5/1 ARM or 3/1 ARM. With all the options available, you need expert advice to help you choose the right loan for your situation. Be sure to visit our loan options page to learn about all the options that are available and if you have more questions, you can call one of our home buying experts!
Step 3: Contact a real estate agent and start shopping
Once you've been pre-approved and have an idea of what price range you qualify for, you can work with a Realtor to view homes for sale in the areas you'd like to live. Need a Realtor? No problem. We can help you there too. Once you find a home you like, you can work with the Realtor to draw up an offer and complete a purchase agreement. The seller has the option to submit a counter-offer and you may go through several rounds of counters.
Step 4: Review your loan application and update your loan
Depending on how much time has passed since we issued your pre-approval, we may need to collect some updated information and updated documents from you. We probably have everything we need, but it is a good idea to go over the home purchase document checklist to ensure we have everything we need.
Once we have updated your file, your home buying specialist will go over the details of your loan program, discuss options for locking the rate, and go over your closing fees. We'll make sure that you understand every detail of your loan program and answer any questions you have before moving forward.
Step 5: Home inspection and appraisal
It is advisable to schedule a home inspection with a professional who will walk you through the property to look for any red flags such as structural damages or appliances that may not be working properly and other items that may need to be fixed. It is a small investment for some peace of mind. Any major issues would need to be addressed before the closing date. While your loan is being reviewed and processed, we will schedule an appraisal appointment with the seller's agent to confirm the value of the home. Unlike a home inspection, that appraisal is a requirement to determine that the home is worth what you are paying for it.
Step 6: Loan approval , signing, and closing
Once we have everything we need, your Processor will submit your complete file to the underwriting department for approval. Once approved, we will prepare loan documents for you to sign. Generally, it will take 30 minutes to an hour and when you're done, you're the proud owner of a new home!