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Ultimate No B.S. Process to Buying a home In Any Market Even If you're buying a Home for the First Time

Before scrolling down, check out my Dream Home Finder Program. No, you don’t have to rely on Zillow and MLS. Simply tell me precisely what you’re looking for in your next home. And based on your criteria. I’ll be able to come up with a secret list of houses, you can privately tour, with me, that no one else knows about, meaning other agents.

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Get Pre-APPROVEd

Without being pre-approved for a loan or having cash verification you will not be attractive to a seller.

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Tour Homes With Buyers Agent

Since the seller pays real estate agent fees you would be silly not to take advantage of a buyer’s agent. 

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Finalize The Home Sale

Know how to get the deal signed, get through inspections and close your new home on time.

Make sure you talk to a lender and get pre-approved. Understand how long your approval is suitable for, for example, the next 90 days. Any trustworthy agent should not even show homes to you without proper pre-approval in place. 

If you need suggestions for a good lender click here.

You want to be an attractive home buyer to sellers

We can show you how to sell a home fast using our Home Sellers' Blueprint. It's basically a road map to sell a home without a Realtor®. It could also be used as a done with you or done for you through a listing agent. You have the choice to decide how much control you want when selling your home. But we always get this question...

 Are you a RWA Certified Home buyer?

This RWA Certified Home Buyer should be deemed as highly qualified and “Ready, Willing & Able” to purchase based on the terms disclosed to them and their agent representative.

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Home Buyers Need To Be Ready

Dedicate time to viewing homes and understand the market so you can make timely decisions and not lose your chance to make an offer.

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HOME BUYERS NEED TO BE Willing

Have an open mind and understand you won’t find a perfect home and may only find 75% of what you want. 

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HOME BUYERS NEED TO BE Able

Have the financial resources available for down payment,  6 month of reserves and all decisions makers present. 

Your fees for buying a home…

can vary depending on the loan product and amount you select to finance.

The best advice I can give here is to work with the lender and a title company to understand the specific fees for your situation. Different loan programs have have certain costs. If you are putting less down you will have additional costs like PMI or Upfront PMI paid in points. There are other variables that can increase costs we won’t go into here. On average, your costs could be between 2 to 5% but instead of guessing talk with a lender and the title company for real figures involving your specific situation.

Home-Seller-Blueprint-Teaser Process to buying a home

Home Sellers' Blueprint

Discover the blueprint for selling your home without a Realtor®, Open Houses or MLS and save up to 2.5% to 6% when selling your home. 

rsz_for_sale_s Process to buying a home

NO B.S. HOME Selling

Selling FSBO, done with you or having a listing agent take control, we have helpful strategies that will get you more money in a shorter amount of time.

rsz_realty_done_new_construction_expert_1k_guarantee Process to buying a home

NO B.S. HOME BUILDING

Before visiting any home builder, there is information you need to know and understand so you have proper representation throughout.

Tips to buying a home

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Before you ever consider buying a home you should pay attention to home sales within your area of interest. If you are interested in receiving updates on sold houses near me Click Here and instantly received sold data as it’s submitted into MLS. Below are some other tips for buying a home.

Have Four to Six Month In Reserves.

You never know if you will lose a job, face another pandemic, get injured. You don’t want to own a home and live pay check to pay check. 

Track Closed Home TransFers In Your Target Area

Start searching closed sales that are 3 to 6 months or  newer in your area of interest. Watch how quickly they are selling to understand the demand.

Walk the Neigborhood & Meet The Neighbors

This is the best way to find out more about your area of interest. Visit and different times and days to see what is really going on.

Look out for the lipstick on the pig.

Maybe a true sign of DIY poorly done or an amateur house flipper. You can be looking at big costs if you have to do it over.

Outside Normal business hours you'rE limited.

Don’t be the buyer who calls at 7 AM or past 8 PM for something that could easily be answered during normal hours. It’s rude and unnecessary.

Don't buy someone Else's Headache.

Be it a leaky basement, bowed walls, sloping floors, items past life expectancy, or outdated materials unless you are paying a lower price.

Pay attention to what surrounds the property

Understand the water drainage and tables around the home you are considering. You don’t want to deal with flooding issues. 

Don't Overpay then THink The Inspection Will Make it Back.

If you think you will beat up the seller with the inspection report and being overly agressive on repair and negotiations you will likely be disappointed.

Once Pre-Approved TO Make Any Large Purchases...

until you close one your new home. I have seen 6 month same as cash or new cars purchased before closing make a buyer lose a home and earnest money.

Don't buy The Home For a 2 to 4 Year Plan.

Between real estate fees to sell, the majority of your mortgage payment going towards interest the home would need to appreciate almost 9% to break even.

Due to numerous changes taking place from work to family, sellers are always in the market 365 days a year. The most important thing for a buyer to do is to make sure they have the most attractive offer to present the seller. Cash is most attractive because it doesn’t require an appraisal from the lender, second is a conventional loan, then FHA and finally a VA loan. VA loans are less attractive due to the extra costs the seller has when a VA loan is involved. When dealing with a loan the more money down is also attractive. The more closing costs you ask for can also be less attractive to a seller. 

 

WINTER

There is less daylight to see the outside condition of the home. Inspections can be limited to do the weather and temperatures.

SPRING

More buyers and sellers are out in the market which will require you to make quick decisions on offers. Plan ahead and bee ready to act.

SUMMER

Due to vacations and kids being out of school you may not feel as rushed but don’t take time for granted. Enjoy late night sun.

Fall

Like the spring this can become another time a buying frenzy so be prepared and be sure to track closing prices in your target area.

Leave Enough Money To Furnish Your Home

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No one says you have to furnish the home within the 1st year you of purchasing. However, if you want to avoid people coming over to your new home and seeing empty rooms and walls you can safely assume that 20-25% of the purchase price can furnish your home nicely.

Few other thoughts to keep in mind.

If you have owned previous homes some of the furniture you already have may fit while some may not. If the style or size is not right for your new home, it normally looks bad and people will notice.

Furniture is purchased for a specific room in your home. You don’t purchase a home for your furniture.

Get The Home Tested For Radon 

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When you go to sell the home you are purchasing, chances are it will be tested for radon. For under $200 you can add this test onto your home inspection. If the test shows a radon mitigation system is required, no need to panic.

The seller will be required to install the mitigation system on their dime or you can cancel the contract and get your earnest money back. The seller will not want to let you go because he/she will have to install the system or sell the home disclosing it has radon and no mitigation system.

I have actually seen homes that were tested for radon and passed then years later when selling the property it failed. An important note about radon is, it can be here today and gone tomorrow. Having a system in a home is not a negative by any means.

Home-Seller-Blueprint-Teaser Process to buying a home

Home Sellers' Blueprint

Discover the blueprint for selling your home without a Realtor®, Open Houses or MLS and save up to 2.5% to 6% when selling your home. 

rsz_for_sale_s Process to buying a home

NO B.S. HOME Selling

Selling FSBO, done with you or having a listing agent take control, we have helpful strategies that will get you more money in a shorter amount of time.

rsz_realty_done_new_construction_expert_1k_guarantee Process to buying a home

NO B.S. HOME BUILDING

Before visiting any home builder, there is information you need to know and understand so you have proper representation throughout.

Home Buyer Rules For Working With A Buyer’s Agent

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Agents Don’t Work For Free

Do not ask an agent to work for you if you’re not going to include them in your next purchase. 

Sign An Agency Disclosure

A disclosure that makes you aware of the different types of agency and it’s required to have your signature. 

Buyers Broker Agreement 

Create a relationship between you and your agent. This explains duties between you and the agent.

Respect The Agents Time

Don’t expect them to drop what they are doing to show you a home. Make appointments and be reasonable.

Don’t Call Listing Agents

If a listing agent shows you a property they become your agent on that house and will be a dual agent.

Communicate Expectations

Let your agent know timeframes, how you want to receive information and if anything is bothering you.

Open House Visits

Talk to your agent about going to open houses before you visit to ensure you act accordingly.

Understand What You Sign

Ask for more explanation on forms you don’t understand. Don’t ask agents to give a legal opinion.

Open House Visits

Talk to your agent about going to open houses before you visit to ensure you act accordingly.

5 Upfront Costs When Buying A Home

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Earnest Money: $1,000 to 3% of the offer price. Typically paid shortly after acceptance of price and terms.

Inspection Fees: On the low end $300 -$500 paid at the time of the inspection. More inspections costs more.  

Appraisal Fee: typically $300-$400 to the lender. Payment is made after inspections and contingencies removed.

Home Insurance: 1st year is paid upfront and you need to provide proof of payment while at the closing table.

Down Payment: This is the money you bring to closing that the lender requires for your home loan. 

Closing Costs For Buying A House

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Closing costs are the fees from transferring the home you purchased from the sellers name into yours. Not all the fees below will apply to your situation and to get specifics on your situation, please talk with your lender and the title company. It’s estimated that home buyer’s will pay 2 to 5% of their home purchase price in closing fees. 

Attorney Fee: Reviews closing docs for buyers and lenders. Not required in Ohio.

Buyer’s Brokerage Fee: Admin fee for the buyer’s real estate brokerage.

Closing/Escrow Fees: Paid to the title company, escrow, or attorney doing the closing.

Currier Fee: Transportation costs for documents to quickly complete the loan.

Discount Points: Prepaid Interest on your loan to lower rate and payments over life of your loan.

Escrow Deposit: Typically 2 months of property tax and mortgage insurance.

Exam Fee: Thorough search of the property’s records to ensure no one else has claim.

FHA Up-Front Mortgage Insurance: 1.75% of FHA loan amount or roll into cost of loan, up to you.

Flood Determination:  Paid to 3rd party to determine if the home is in a flood zone.

Lender’s Policy Title Ins: Protects the lender if there is a problem with title & it’s a valid lean.

Owners Policy Title Insurance: Optional, but protects you if someone challenges ownership.

Origination Fee:  Lender’s admin fee which is usually 1% of the loan amount. 

Prepaid Interest: Interest that will accrue between closing and your 1st mortgage payment.

Private Mortgage Insurance: This occurs when paying less than 20% down. 

Recording Fee: For the recording of public land records at the local recording office.

Survey Fee: Verifies property lines and whats on whos property. Not required in all states.

Transfer Tax: Tax paid when the title passes from the seller to the buyer. 

Underwriting Fee: Covers the cost of researching the approval of your loan.

VA Funding Fee: If doing a VA loan, you may pay a % of the loan amount or may be exempt.

Other Fees: Talk with your lender and title company for any fees missed here.

How much of my closing costs can be paid by the seller?

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Conventional Loans

You can ask the seller to pay for 3% up to 9% depending on your loan to value. If you put 25.1% down payment you can ask the seller to contribute up to 9% of your purchase price. With a down payment of 10-25%, you can ask for up to 6%. Less than 10% down payment you can only request up to 3%.

FHA and USDA Loans

The seller can contribute up to 6% of the purchase price toward discount points, prepaid expenses, and closing costs. 

VA Loans

The seller can contribute up to 4% of the purchase price toward discount points, prepaid expenses, closing costs, paying off collections, judgments or leases at closing. 

 Seller Paid Closing Costs 

When requesting seller paid closing costs it’s important to keep in mind how much you are offering to buy the home. Let’s assume you are buying a home with a 20% down conventional mortgage. The seller has a list price of $400,000 and you are offering $395,000 with the seller to pay 4% of buyers closings costs towards prepaid expenses, closing costs and discount points.  You would actually be offering the seller a $379,200 offer price. $395,000 * .04 = $15,800 -$395,000 = $379,200. Depending on the market and other offers, this offer may not do well.

However, offering $416,000 with the seller to pay 4% towards buyers closing costs may be more attractive for the seller. They would actually be receiving a full price offer in this scenario of $400,000. This only issue here is the home would have to appraise at $416,000 for the loan to be approved. 

 

21 Home Buyer Mistakes To Avoid

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Skipping the pre-approval

Be unrealistic on what you can afford

Only talking to one lender

Not understanding all the costs to own

Don’t view homes outside your budget

Comparing part of homes to each house

Don’t try buying without a buyers agent

Calling agents you’re not working with

Not knowing what homes sell for in the area

Underestimating time needed to house shop 

Underestimating repair costs 

Overestimating your ability to do repair work

Spending your entire budget

Not researching down pmt. assistance programs

Taking to long to decide and you lose a home

Acting to quick and regretting your decision

Overbidding because your emotions to over

Ignoring the neighborhood the home is in

Not doing a home inspection

Nitpicking home inspection reports

Large Purchase Commitments before closing

“I only used a portion of the information from the Home Sellers’ Blueprint Implementation plan, and I saved roughly $15,000 selling my duplex near the Ohio State University.  There was no agent on either side. Paperwork was a breeze and both myself, and the buyer are happy.”

Kevin S.

Happily Sold FSBO

“I requested listing agent from the founder of Realty Done. The listing agent sells more than $20 million per year. I’m happy I took advantage of the offer. We received a full price offer on day 1. I didn’t have to go through many of the inconveniences sellers normally deal with during a listing.”

Bernard B.

Happily Received A Referred Realtor®

Stop letting Home Sellers Outsmart you By Using The Home Sellers' Blueprint

If you invest in our home sellers’ blueprint and decide a Realtor is better for you,  we have a program will return your original investment back to you upon closing on your listing. At least this way you have nothing to lose and will understand the process.

How long does showing a home with my buyer’s agent take?

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The amount of time you spend in a home can vary from a few minutes to around an hour. Most homes being viewed by a potential buyer will usually take about 15 minutes. 

If the showing is short it’s likely due to something that turns you off and you know you won’t consider the home. 

Longer showings can take place if it is the first home you are seeing and your agent is educating you what to look for. Another reason for sticking around is if the home meets a lot of what you are looking for.

If you find an available home you love, keep in mind many other potential buyers within your price range and market will likely see the same positives you do so don’t hesitate to long if you are not making an offer right away. 

Home Buying Process 

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The home buying process can feel like a second job. By following these steps below you can save yourself a lot of headaches and make the best decisions for your next home purchase.

Step 1: Start Your Home Search Online

Go to www.zillow.com, the #1 real estate website for residential real estate, and start looking in the cities you are considering to buy a home. Set the Zillow filter to show you sold homes. The goal here is to pay attention to what homes are selling for in your area of interest. 

Step 2: Realistically Establish The Price Range You Can Afford

The best place to start is by talking to a lender. This lender does not have the be the lender you choose to you when you buy the home. It’s always good to look at more than one lender to compare rates and costs for the mortgage plan you choose. 

Just for simple math, take your income and times it by three to figure out a basic price of a home you can afford. Say you make $120,000 a year. You should be able to afford a $360,000 home a year. Depending on home much down payment you have saved and how much debt you have may determine more or less in the purchase price. 

Step 3: Start looking at Realtors® you may want to work with

Find an agent that makes you feel comfortable and that works well with your personality. Be cautious about people referring you to an agent they know. There are over 6,000 real estate agents in northeast Ohio and most of them hardly do any business and will be learning on your experience. Also be cautious of going to talk to “Agents on Duty” if you stop by a real estate brokerage. Agents on duty are typically less active agents that wait for business to come to them vs successful agents who go magnetically attract buyers and seller to them. 

Step 4: Have Your Pre-Approval In Hand

Pre-qualifications mean nothing to a seller. You need to have a pre-approval that shows a real estate agent and any seller that you have provided proper documentation, your credit has been pulled and you can get a loan to purchase homes within a price range.  

Understand from your lender how long your pre-approval is good for. 

Step 5: Start Touring Homes With a Buyer’s Agent

Having the pre-approval provides the real estate agent the ability to show you available homes on the market. Thanks to the internet and sites like Zillow you will be able to find homes you are interested in. A great buyer’s agent will be able to help navigate you through the home buying process, negotiate for you, and if they are familiar with your area of interest it can be even more beneficial for you. 

Outside of a brokerage administrative fee, your buyer’s agent doesn’t cost you because their commission is paid by the seller. 

During the initial stage of viewing homes you will likely miss out of a few homes due to other buyers reacting quicker then you are comfortable doing. Don’t worry, after you lose a couple you will have a better feel of the process and will understand why you agent may suggest you take quicker action if you fall in love with someone. 

While touring homes make sure you take notes on things you like and dislike. After you tour more than two or three homes, your memory will being blending homes together. Taking notes on each by address will make life and narrowing home down so much easier. 

 Step 6: Get Serious and Make Offers

This is where your pre-approval is needed to accompany the real estate disclosures, purchase agreement and earnest money. Expect tensions to get high, stress levels to spike and FOMO to overwhelm you. 

As long as you understand what homes are closing for in the area you shouldn’t be uncomfortable with the offer you submit to the sellers agent. This is also where you don’t want to be cheap and offer low thinking you will get the best deal.

When great homes are limited and buyers are plentiful its best to offer their asking price if not a little over. If you are ever concerned your price is too high just make the purchase agreement contingent of the appraisal being at or above the purchase price. 

Step 7: Release your earnest money deposit

Per your purchase agreement, once the offer is signed the first thing you need to do is give the earnest money check to your real estate brokerage or the title company. You will know where it goes by the way it was originally written in your offer. 

Step 8: Get Your Home Inspection Ordered 

Get your home inspection ordered as soon as your offer is accepted. Try to get this done days before the contingency period is expired just in case further inspections are suggested from the home inspection. 

The inspection will take 2.5 to 4 hours. Once the inspection is complete, you can expect to get a detailed report with supporting pictures taken during the inspection within the next 24 hours. 

Unless the inspection period exposes significant, hazardous or dangerous issues this is not a renegotiation time. If you get too greedy you will find the seller will let you walk away from the deal. If the issues are more than you are comfortable with, you are also able to back out of the deal as well. 

Step 9: Submit Your Purchase Agreement To Your Lender

Get your fully authorized purchase agreement and supporting paperwork over to your lender as soon as your offer is accepted. As long as you have a great lender, they will be able to tell you if you should lock your rate right away or hold for a short time period. 

This is also a time period that you provide any additional paperwork or documentation requested by the lender. Do it right away and don’t procrastinate or you can expect to cause unwanted delays. 

 Step 10: Home Appraisal 

After Inspections are completed and contingencies are removed, now the appraisal takes place. 

As long as the home appraises at or above the purchase price, your stress level should go way down and you should start to finally feel the home is going to close. 

If the home doesn’t appraise, three things will likely occur. 

1. The seller will have to reduce the purchase price to the appraised price. This is most common. 

2. You, the buyer, will need to bring the difference between your purchase price and the appraisal price as additional funds to closing on top of your down payment. To provide an example, You offer $400,000 and you are putting $80,000 (20% down) on your loan but the home only appraised for $390,000. The bank is only going to loan you 390,000 not $400,000. Now your down payment will be $78,000 (20% down) + $10,000 to cover the difference between your purchase price of $400,000 and the appraised value of $390,000. To sum this up, the buyer thought the down payment was $80,000 and now they have to bring $88,000 as a down payment for closing. This is obviously the least likely option for a buyer. 

3. The deal is canceled and the seller re-markets the home for sale. This is the 2nd most common option. 

Step 11: Setting Up For Closing With By Title Company

The seller’s agent should have the fully authorized purchase agreement and supporting paperwork over to the title company as soon as your offer is accepted. Title will be talking to your lender as well as working with home owner associations if they need to be involved to transfer ownership to your name upon title transfer of the home. Title will also be making sure that the seller is the rightful owner of the home and there are no liens that would prohibit the sale from transferring. 

Step 12: Final Walk Through

One to three days before you close, you and your buyer’s agent should do one final walk through of the home you are about to own. The goal is to make sure nothing drastic has changed to the home. I suggest doing this the day before closing is to take place. 

Step 13: The Close

Expect to sign your documents a day or two before the closing takes place. Make sure you have everything you need. Make sure you have identification and a bank check for your down payment if you didn’t do a wire. 

Don’t expect to get the keys for your new home during the signing of your paperwork. 

Once the bank gives clear to close the title company will transfer the deed with the county. Once the deed has transferred the real estate agents involved will receive a call to release keys. 

 

Mortgage Rates and Home Buying Calculators

28/36 Rule Calculator
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PITI Calculator

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Mortgage Calculator by MortgageCalculator.org

Start tracking sold homes in your area of interest

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Dream Home Finder Provides You With Homes That Aren't Listed On MLS or Zillow

What if you were able to tour homes that have specific things you want in your next home? Other agents and buyers are not aware of these homes being available for sale. This means you are not having to race to these homes to avoid other buyers taking the home from you before you have the chance to make your offer.

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