Four steps to a smooth home buying experience

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According to a landmark stress study developed by psychiatrists Thomas Holmes and Richard Rahe, four events in the home buying process rank among the top 43 of life’s most stressful circumstances:

Changes in someone’s financial state ranked No. 16, while large mortgage loans ranked No. 20. Change in living conditions ranked No. 28, and a change in residence ranked No. 32.

The purchase of a home should be a joyous event, but sometimes, the process can be overwhelming. Experts recommend partnering with trusted professionals who should advocate for you, the buyer, to avoid mishaps.

STEP 1: FINANCES

Prior to home search, secure a pre-approval. This will allow you to not only get acquainted with your loan office, but it will also help you steer clear of surprises in the loan process later to come.

STEP 2: HIRE A BUYER’S AGENT

Having a realtor who represents you, the buyer, is the best decision in order to avoid costly mistakes. They advocate for your interest and ensure the process is as smooth as possible by using their expertise and education to guide you.

STEP 3: INSPECTION

A good realtor should be able to recommend reliable inspectors in your area. Inspectors must adhere to code of ethics, which prohibits them from accepting kickbacks from contractors, or real estate agents. Insist on inspectors who go beyond state regulatory requirements, take continued education courses in their field and belong to organizations like ASHI.

STEP 4: CLOSING FIRM

Again, a good realtor is your source for recommending a reputable, reliable firm to avoid overdue closings and unforeseen problems at the closing table. The communication between the realtor, lender and attorney during this final stage of home buying is probably the most important factor to avoid the elevated stress home buying can produce. Keep in mind, the closing attorney works with lenders, title companies and prepares all the necessary paperwork for the actual transfer of ownership.

BUS 05-07-14