Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Going from A to B for first time buyers

With many clients jumping on deals this early spring (including myself), one notices certain similarities amongst clients... They don't know how to take that first "step".

What do we do once you’ve found a place? Before my wife and I bought our first home in Albany Park, just west of Ravenswood Manor, we didn’t have a clue what was involved in the first stages of purchase process. Information and education is king, however, and once our Realtor Julie Varones (now my associate… we’ll I’m her associate) simply laid it out for us, buying became a very real possibility. Then, when we found the condo with all the fix’ns, we jumped. Photo by Eric Rojas

So, clients, when we get out on the road, I like to ask right away…”Do you have a good grasp of the buying process?” If not, I want to alleviate that anxiety before the $350K duplex –down with three beds, two baths and a garage spot comes up in Lakeview or Lincoln Square. This probably won’t happen. But if it did… don’t you want to jump?!

In a nutshell, once you have your budget figured out with the help of a financial professional and mortgage broker/lender, you’ll start looking. When the right Bucktown condo comes up near the Blue Line you will be confident you will have a mortgage ready.

We basically grab a standard Chicago contract (read my last post) if it’s a re-sale and put the offer together. You will submit an initial Earnest money check of $1,000 to $3,000 to hold the condo if your offer is accepted. The money will be eventually applied to the closing costs and down payment if any.

By this time, you will have your lease situation figured out (buy-out, sub-lease, month-to-month) or have listed your property with me (and sold it if needed). But the point here is, together we’ve prepped you to make an offer so the when the right deal formulates, you can act. That act starts with making a written offer with the purchase terms you are requesting. That’s the step… that’s it.

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