Congratulations on getting an accepted purchase agreement! That’s a huge hurdle to cross when you are buying a new house. What are the next steps?? Here’s a quick overview of what’s gonna happen next and the five items that you need to get done relatively quickly.
Mortgage & Appraisal
Please provide your mortgage lender a copy of the final purchase agreement and any and all counter offers. Section F in the Purchase Agreement outlines the timeline for you to have final approval on your new loan. Your bank will order an appraisal and verify that the house is really worth what you just agreed to pay. The bank will schedule the appraisal and let us know the result when it’s complete.
You need to order a home inspection as soon as possible. Per your contract, we only have a few days to complete the inspection. See section M in the Purchase Agreement for the exact timeline. Under the Useful Websites and Links tab is a link to some excellent inspectors. Schedule the inspection at a time when you can be there. It will be very beneficial for you to be at the house and learn about the inner workings of the house and hear straight from the inspector what his concerns may be. I will meet you at the house towards the end of your inspection to hear from the inspector too. You will need to pay for the inspection up front and he will provide you a written report of all of his findings. Typically, I like to take 24 hours to review and digest the findings. Then you and I will prioritize the mechanical, structural, health or safety issues that need addressed before you finalize the purchase of the home and I will write up an Inspection Response to send over to the seller.
You need to deliver the earnest money to the selling agents office or send it electronically, if available, within the timeline indicated on your purchase agreement. Personal checks are not accepted. You will need to get a cashiers check from your bank or wire the money to the title company. Please write the address of the new house on the memo line and take a photo of the cashiers check. I will need a copy of it for our files before you deliver it. If you are delivering it electronically, please share a copy of the receipt with me. We typically only have 48 hours or two business days to deliver the earnest money to the selling agent, per section D in the Purchase Agreement. Refer to your agreement or the timeline outline I provided you to determine your specific deadline.
I will secure the HOA Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs), if applicable, and provide you a copy. Please review the documents within three days of receipt, per section T in the Purchase Agreement. If they are acceptable, there is no need to do anything else. If there is something in the CCRs that you can’t live with, then we need to perform a mutual release of the property and start shopping for a new house.
Per section P, I will start the title search process with the seller’s agent. There is nothing you need to do with this process at this point. I will circle back to you when I receive the search findings from the title company.
The items above are the most important things, but there’s more.
As directed in section K in the Purchase Agreement, contact your insurance agent about homeowners insurance for your new house. The policy does not need to be in effect until you take possession of the house on our closing date. If you need an insurance agent, you can find some reputable agents on my website under the Useful Websites and Links tab.
Of course you will want utilities at your new house and it’s good start that process early, especially if this is the first time you have put utilities in your own name. It’s a good idea to start the process about 3 weeks before our scheduled closing date and schedule transfer of service for the same day of our closing. The sellers are responsible for the utility charges until our closing day. This task is especially important during the winter months, so pipes don’t freeze, and also important if you have a basement, so we don’t risk cutting off power to the sump pump during times of heavy rain.
As we get closer to the closing there are a couple of other items we’ll need to address, but we have time on those. Please get these first five items completed right away! Congratulations and please don’t hesitate to reach out to me with any questions!
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