First Time Home Buyers


There are several steps to consider when purchasing your first home.

  1. Step One: Get a pre-qualified from a lender. The first item of business is, if you are not going to pay cash for a home, then you need to Apply for a Loan. Once you apply for a loan, and you are pre-qualified by a mortgage lender. You still have to turn in the documents the lender needs so that they can give you full loan approval. If you don't have a lender, there are several here that you can choose from. The lender will help you check your credit score, and if you're not ready to purchase yet, can offer you some idea of what you need to do in the coming months to be ready to purchase your home. The lender can also help you to determine if your debt-to-income ratio (DTI) will allow you to purchase a home right now as well.

  2. Step Two: Find a real estate agent. Typically, we would advise that you find an agent first. Your real estate agent can assist you with finding lenders that can help, and to guide you through the process from the beginning to closing. They can help you purchase new construction, for-sale-by-owners, previously built homes and also represent you when you go in to chat with a builder's rep that's sitting in a model home. Buyer's agents typically earn their commissions out of the transaction, and that fee is paid as a cooperating fee with the listing agent. There is a difference between a real estate agent and a RealtorĀ®; the second of the two is a member of the National Association of RealtorsĀ® and adheres to a code of ethics. You can always contact us if you have any questions.

  3. Step Three: Go Shopping For Your Home! This is the exciting part! You get to go shopping for a home in the Charlotte, Rock Hill or Fort Mill SC areas and you can search online! Make sure you share with your agent, what features you would like in your home, including how many bathrooms, bedrooms, location, etc.

  4. Make An Offer! No matter which property you choose, you want to make an offer on the home when you find the right one. Your agent can assist you in preparing your offer to submit to the seller or listing agent. You may have negotiated an earnest money deposit, which is basically "money in earnest," or a due diligence fee. Your agent can assist you with determining how much earnest monies you should put down. It's not required in all situations, speak to your agent for more details.

  5. Get A Home Inspection! A home inspection is different from an appraisal. A home inspection is completed by a third-party vendor and they check the roof, HVAC system, plumbing and structure components of the home to make sure that it's in proper working order. An appraiser gives the bank and the investor on your loan an idea of how much the home is worth so that the bank can determine how much money they will lend you to purchase the home. Both are fees that are paid by the buyer. Make sure you have that money saved. Currently an appraisal can run several hundred dollars, and so can a home inspection.

  6. Close on Your Loan. Once all contingencies have been removed from your loan and the property (seller has made any repairs and your lender has given you a "clear-to-close" then you are ready to close on your loan and move into your home. In the Carolinas, closings are handled by real estate attorneys. Once the deed is recorded and the loan is funded, then you can move into your new home!