Letter to Buyers
Congratulation on beginning the home buying process!
Choosing a home is a major decision. That's why we take the time to target certain
homes in specific neighborhoods and streamline your home buying process.
Maybe that's why over 70% of our business comes from referrals.
We will offer personal, timely service designed to pinpoint the perfect home for your unique needs and lifestyle, including:
In-depth interview to help us target neighborhoods
Detailed community information including school ratings, crime statistics and home values
Daily email updates that alert you to new home listings
Financial tools. Mortgage calculators and current interest rates to help you make your decision
Recommend strategies to give you an edge over other buyers
Negotiate the best purchase agreement terms
We treat each client as an individual. That means your financial decisions, target moving date and other personal factors are all taken into account when finding your new home
Finding the best new home for you is very important to us and we are honored to have the opportunity to partner with you in your home-buying process. Our mission is to provide you with extraordinary service every step of the way!
Lindsey and Noah Culver
The home buying process: An Overview
Let's look for a new home!
In some cases, our clients find their dream home on the first day. In other cases, it takes more time to find the right one. Rest assured, there is a home out there that is just right for you. We just have to find it.
To assist you in the home search journey, we have organized a list of homes showing us the following information for each:
Photos of the home
The home address
The current asking price
The square footage and property taxes
The number of bedrooms and baths
The age and lot size
Unique features and comments
Once we narrow down the list of properties that are of interest, we will:
Provide you with more detailed information about the home
Review the county tax records for tax liens, etc..
Schedule a personal visit to the home
Tour the home with you
Determine how the asking price compares with other homes in the area
Make all attempts to find out the age of the systems in the home. This includes:
The roof, water heater, furnace, A/C, etc. This is important because these items can be costly and should be factored into deciding if a particular home is the right one for you.
Answer any and all questions you may have
Making An Offer
Once you have found the property you want, we will write a purchase agreement. There are a few areas we can negotiate.
What you offer on a property depends on a number of factors, including its condition, length of time on the market, buyer activity, and the urgency of the seller. While some buyers want to make a low offer just to see how the seller responds, this often isn't a smart choice, because the seller may be insulted and be unwilling to negotiate at all.
THE MOVE IN DATE
If you can be flexible on the possession date, the seller will be more apt to accept other terms of your offer.
Often the seller plans on leaving major appliances in the home; however, which items stay or go is often a matter of negotiation.
If it is appropriate, we will ask for a home warranty in your initial offer. Sometimes it is best to wait until inspection negotiations. Culver Home Team feels very strongly about our buyers being protected by a home warranty. After all, you are spending a great deal of money on a new home and we want you to rest assured that if one of your systems fail, it will likely be covered under the warranty. With typical copay's around $60, this is a fraction of the cost of calling a regular service provider.
In this market, we have very strong relationships with our fellow co-brokers, but that doesn't always land us the accepted offer in a multiple offer situation (see more about multiple offer situations below). Sometimes sellers are sentimental about their home and it can strengthen your offer if you write a "love letter" expressing how beautiful their home is and how you can envision your life there. We will provide you with strategies on what has worked for our previous buyers so you can be ahead of the competition and have a better chance at owning your dream home.
MULTIPLE OFFER SITUATIONS
Sometimes other buyers are also writing offers on the same property. In this situation, you will need to determine just how motivated you are to purchase the home and what you are and are not willing to offer in order to bear out the other offers. The broker representing the seller will likely not reveal the terms of the competing offers during negotiations. You will not be at the offer presentation. We will present it to the listing agent and/or the seller on your behalf. The seller will then do one of the following:
Accept the offer
Reject the offer
Counter the offer with changes
By far the most common response is a counter offer. In this situation our experience and negotiation skills become powerful in representing your best interests. When a counter offer is presented, we will work together to review each specific area of it, making sure that we move forward with your goals in mind and ensuring that we negotiate the best possible price and terms on your behalf.
Once you have found a home and we have written and negotiated through the terms of the sale with the seller, the home inspection period begins. Typically this is 5-10 business days long (we will have defined that in the accepted offer). During this time, you as the buyer have the right to terminate the contract for any reason and receive 100% of your earnest money back. It is also during this time that any and all inspections should occur. The buyer typically pays for these inspections up front, so budget accordingly.
The following are the inspections we highly recommend each of our buyers perform:
GENERAL HOME INSPECTION
The results of the general inspection performed by a licensed home inspector may call out required repairs, recommended repairs or just alert you to potential issues down the road. These results may lead you to need or want to hire additional inspections such as a mason to inspect a faulty chimney or a roofer to inspect the roof.
Radon is a naturally occurring gas that is prevalent in certain parts of the Portland Metro area and non-existent in others. It is potentially harmful to humans if it is in too high concentration indoors. Depending on where the home is located, a radon inspection may be highly recommended.
SEWER SCOPE AND INSPECTION
A sewer scope will identify any issues in the line such as cracks or damage. Sometimes in older homes and neighborhoods, there may be a sewer line crossing another property's. These can be costly issues that will likely require repair prior to closing.
Depending on the type of property you are purchasing, we may make recommendations for additional inspections such as siding, foundation, structural engineer, etc.
When the results of the home inspections have all come in, we will work with you to determine what is any repairs we will ask the sellers to makes prior to closing. This is a crucial step in the home buying process. Once the repairs have been negotiated and this contingency has been removed, you are bound to purchase the home or lose earnest money. The only exception to this is if your financing falls through and you are unable to find alternative financing to complete the purchase.
Funding Your Home Purchase
Most home buyers will require some form of bank financing to purchase a new property. Why pre-qualify? We always recommend our buyers get pre-qualified BEFORE beginning their home search. Knowing exactly how much you can comfortably spend on a home reduces the potential frustration of looking at homes beyond your means. Below outlines the general process of obtaining financing for your home purchase. We have close relationships with the top lenders in Portland. We use these lenders for our own home purchases and recommend them without hesitation. When you sell as many homes as we do, you learn quickly what lenders really deliver for their clients.
Financial pre-qualification or pre-approval
Application and interview
Buyer provides pertinent documentation including verification of employment
Credit report is requested
Loan package is submitted to bank's underwriter for initial approval
2. Loan Approval
Appraisal of subject property
Parties are notified of approval
Loan documents are completed and sent to title
3. Title Company
Title exam, insurance and title survey conducted
Borrowers come in for final signatures
Lender reviews the final loan package
Funds are transferred by wire
Prepare for it
Closing day marks the end of your home buying process and the beginning of your new life! To make sure your closing goes smoothly, you should bring the following:
A certified check for closing costs and the down payment. Either your title officer or your lender will give you instructions about who to make the check out to.
An insurance binder and paid receipt
Social security numbers
Addresses for the past 10 years
Transfer of title moves ownership of the property from the seller to you. The two events that make this happen are:
Delivery of the buyers' funds
This is the check or wire funds provided by your lender in the amount of the loan.
Delivery of the deed
A deed is the document that transfers ownership of real estate. The deed names the seller and buyer, gives a legal description of the property and contains the notarized signatures of the seller and witnesses.
At the end of closing, the deed will be taken and recorded at the county clerk's office. It will be sent to you after processing.
Remember, the day of closing is not necessarily the same day you will receive possession of the home. The date of possessions will be determined in the initial offer.
Let's Get Started!
Now it is time to begin your home-buying process!
We are truly honored that you are trusting us to help you navigate what could be one of the biggest purchases of your life. We are committed to providing you with an extraordinary experience - guiding you through the process from beginning to end and ensuring that you understand everything and are 100% comfortable with your purchase.
Let's find your paradise!