Finding a Real Estate Agent in Saint Petersburg and Tampa
You don’t have to work with an agent – but it is extremely recommended unless you are a highly experienced buyer or lawyer. Your agent should be someone you know you can trust, an expert in real estate in your area and neighborhood, and very proficient in working with buyers of your experience.
Shopping Homes for Sale in Saint Petersburg and Tampa
Now it’s time for the fun part! You get to start shopping! This is where you get to decide exactly what you want and need in a home, from the type of house or townhouse to the location of the neighborhood to all the exciting interior and exterior amenities you just have to have! Make sure you keep detailed records of the homes you visit, noting things you liked, didn’t like, pros and cons, etc. Taking pictures can also help keep your memory fresh.
Tip: Before you start touring homes, determine the actual selling price of homes in your preferred neighborhoods – not just their listing price – to get a better idea of the actual affordability of the location.
Making an Offer
You found the perfect house, and now it’s time for you and your agent to sit down and discuss your offer. It’s important to work together to determine a price you can comfortably afford but will also be a realistic offer for the seller to accept and will not be dismissed against any competing offers the seller might receive.
What Will I Pay Upfront?
Think of this as your security deposit. It’s paid when you submit your offer to show the seller that you are serious. When your offer is accepted, it is applied to your down payment or closing costs.
This is determined by your loan, or possibly any government programs or assistance you have requested.
These are typically low for buyers and represent the fees associated with paperwork and lender charges.
Requesting a Home Inspection:
If the seller accepts your offer, it’s time for a home inspection. Before you close, you’ll want to have an experienced professional walk the house to ensure that there aren’t any lingering problems or maintenance issues that might not be visible at first glance. You don’t want to be hit with a serious maintenance or structural issue right after you move in. If necessary, you can request that the seller repair any issues you find
If everything looks good, it’s time to sign the paperwork, make final negotiations and payments, and get your keys!
Review Your Contract:
Before you sign any paperwork, it’s important that you carefully read over the contract with your agent or lawyer to ensure there are contingencies – that is, if something falls through with your mortgage, you aren’t still obligated to buy the home.
Finalize Your Mortgage:
Work with your chosen lender to submit your mortgage application, have your home appraised, and review predicted closing costs. There are many costs commonly associated with closing, including attorney fees, title insurance, appraisal fees, home inspection fees, courier fees, government recording fees, and taxes.
Pay, Close, and Get Keys!
It’s time to close! Meet with your agent, lender, and the seller to finalize the paperwork, sign your contracts, and pay your down payment and closing costs. Finally – the keys to your new home!