Sabal Homes at Summers Corner
Looking for a home that is truly “move-in ready?” You’re in luck! Realtor.com has some great tips to expedite the home buying process and Charleston area homebuilders have a great selection of homes available for a quick move-in! If you’ve purchased a home before, you can be familiar with how lengthy of a process it can be. You might look at dozens of homes before narrowing down a specific area and then finding a house that’s a good fit. Then you negotiate with the seller. Then you go through the loan process, with what seems like an endless shuffle of papers back and forth. Then you’re ready to close- a process in and of itself that can also seem to drag into infinity… While you might have lost track of days, it typically takes around 50 to close the average home loan. What do you do if you’re in a position where you need a home fast? Know that it will require a lot of preparation on your part, but that it is possible!
1. Choose your Realtor® with care. If you have a targeted area where you’re hoping to purchase, pick an agent who specializes there and will be very familiar with the options available. There are huge advantages to working with a buyers agent, one of which is many are familiar with the new construction options available.
2. Compile your questions early in the game. Home buying is not always a straight-forward process—whether you’re a seasoned veteran or a first-time buyer you’re sure to have questions about the process. Ask your agent! Or your lender, lawyer or accountant. Having questions answered early will make sure that they can be effectively addressed and won’t slow you down later in the process.
3. Obtain pre-approval (this is more than just a pre-qualification). Getting pre-qualified is always a good idea before you start looking for your home—this lets you, your agent and potential sellers know what your purchasing power is. If you’re eager to close quickly, a pre-approval is a “must have” item. The difference between the two is that a pre-qualification is a ballpark figure given by your lender after taking into account your income and credit, it is not a firm commitment that they will lend you money. A pre-approval entails more of the underwriting process and is a more firm “yes” from the bank. Not only will it make your offer stronger but it will potentially reveal any issues that need to be addressed prior to closing.
4. Be selective. Narrow down a list of your “must have” features. Go over the list with your Realtor to make sure it is reasonable and so that they know what you’re looking for. Be firm when looking at houses, this will allow you to quickly cross off homes that don’t meet those criteria and move on to another one that might.
5. Don’t lowball your offer. It’s perfectly reasonable to offer below asking price and to request some seller concessions (contribution towards closing costs, design allowance to be applied to appliances, etc.) and your Realtor will help guide you through this process. This is not the time to make a super low offer that the market doesn’t support. The good news is that wanting to close quickly will appeal to the builders & potentially sweeten your sale.
6. Pick your battles. It is not uncommon for buyers to request changes in existing inventory new construction homes—from swapping the flooring to the addition of appliances. Sellers will often try and accommodate these changes but know that you could be delaying your closing date. While adding in appliances might be a simple and timely request, something like changing out flooring might not be. Some of those changes might need to be projects you take on after closing.
7. Have your paperwork ready to go. Obtaining a mortgage will require a lot of documentation from you. Be prepared with three months of bank statements and pay stubs, several year’s tax returns and letters of explanation for any unusual financial expenditures. Know where your credit stands and make sure you’re in a realistic financial place to buy. Your lender will need to be able to source your down payment, if you’re planning on using gifted funds, make sure to clear that with your lender early on.
Following these steps and relying on a good Realtor will get you far (fast!). Also do some research ahead of time to see what homes might appeal to you. The Guide has a special section specifically dedicated to area new construction move-in ready homes. You can get up-to-date details on what homes are available and their specifics, see pictures and get more information on the communities. Using this online feature will allow you to get a move on!
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