What you can expect throughout the process.
The process of buying real estate differs slightly from state to state, and in some instances, differs within the state. Here’s what you can expect throughout the buying process in our Hudson Valley area.
- The Purchase Offer.
When you have identified the property you would like to purchase you will be required to submit, in writing, your “purchase offer” with the purchase price and any contingencies such as financing provisions, house inspections, items to remain or to be removed from the house, etc. No accompanying deposit will be required when submitting your purchase offer. Your agent conveys the offer to the listing agent. The offer is accepted, rejected, or you and the seller negotiate until there is an agreed upon purchase price.
- The Home Inspection.
Paid for by the buyer and usually scheduled within 2 weeks of an accepted offer. These typically include an inspection of the structure, water supply, septic system, pests and radon levels. NY State law requires that sellers provide a residential property condition disclosure or offer a $500 credit to the buyer at closing. Any repair issues as a result of the inspection are negotiated with the seller at this point.
- The Sales Contract.
Remember, the house is still being shown until there is a signed contract, so another buyer could emerge. Therefore, we always assist and urge our clients to perform their inspections and get to signed contracts as quickly as possible. Some counties in NY use “fill-in-the blank” standardized forms, sales contracts in our area are typically written by attorneys. Your agent can give you options for a local attorney. A 10% deposit is required at contract signing. If you are applying for a mortgage, a contingency for a commitment letter will be made part of the contract.
- The Lender
You choose a lender. Your agent can suggest options. The lender will require current financial information and a credit report.
- The Appraisal
Once you have chosen a lender, they will order a certified appraisal from a licensed appraiser. A survey may also be required by the lender. The buyer pays for the appraisal and survey costs.
- The Closing
Your realtor and attorney will work closely with your lender to coordinate the closing and make sure everything that’s required is properly handled. Your attorney will order a title search, purchase title insurance on your behalf, and handle all aspects of the closing process. You’ll be responsible for obtaining a homeowners policy for the property prior to the closing. In addition to the down payment, mortgage and attorney fees required by your lender, you will typically pay for the title search, a title insurance policy, your attorney fees, homeowner’s insurance policy, your prorated share of the annual property taxes, any property association dues, and any prorated heating fuel or utilities. Ask your lender and your attorney for an estimate of these fees, so you’re not surprised at the closing.