Choices Realty Northwest
We understand it’s not just a house, it’s your home!
Phone: (425) 828-9828

Buyer's Tips

Hire a Buyer's Broker

  • A buyer's broker will represent only you and have a fiduciary responsibility to look out for your best interests.
  • Buyer's brokers may ask you to sign a buyer's broker agreement, but it is the seller who pays the commission.
  • Interview brokers until you find an broker you trust and with whom you feel comfortable.

Get Pre-qualified / Pre-approved

  • Ask your broker for a referral to a mortgage broker, but also compare rates offered by your own bank and/or credit union.
  • Ask the lender to give you a loan pre-approval letter, which means it will verify your income and pull a credit report.
  • Determine your maximum loan amount, but choose only a mortgage type that you understand and a payment level with which you feel comfortable, which may very well be less than the maximum for which you are approved.

Look at Homes for Sale

  • Narrow your search to those homes that fit your exact parameters to find that perfect home.
  • Ask your broker to give you MLS print-outs of comparable sales in your targeted neighborhood.
  • Consider all homes on the market, including fixer-uppers, REOs, foreclosures, short sales and those overpriced homes with longer DOM(days on market).

Write a Purchase Offer

  • Consider writing seller's market offers in sellers markets and buyer's market offers in buyer's markets.
  • Select a home offer price based on the amount you feel a seller will accept or counter.
  • If you are considering a low ball offer, ask your broker to substantiate this price for you.
  • Prepare for multiple offers if the home is considered desirable in a sought after area.
  • If your offer is rejected, ask your broker to explain why.

Negotiate and Write Counter Offers

  • Expect the seller to issue a counter offer.
  • If the seller counters at full price, continue to negotiate.

Make an Earnest Money Deposit

  • When your offer is accepted, your broker will deposit your earnest money check with the appropriate party.
  • Do not make your check payable to the seller.
  • Your offer should contain contingencies that will return your earnest money deposit to you if you cancel the contract.

Open Escrow / Order Title

  • Your broker will open escrow and title, if the listing broker hasn't already done so.
  • Your broker will provide you with the escrow officer's name, phone and escrow file number.
  • Give this information to your lender and your insurance broker.

Order Appraisal

  • Your lender will require an advance payment for the appraisal.
  • If you receive a low appraisal, discuss options with your broker.
  • Ask for a copy of the appraisal.

Approve Seller Disclosures

  • Read and question items you are unsure of on the Seller Property Questionnaire, natural hazard report, pest inspection / completion and other documents such as a preliminary title policy.
  • Read every document in its entirety; ask questions about all seller disclosures.

Order Homeowner's Insurance Policy

  • Order your homeowner's insurance early.
  • Sometimes previous claims by a home owner can make it difficult to get insurance.
  • Get replacement coverage.

Neighborhood Review

  • Take full advantage of the neighborhood review time period.

Conduct Home Inspection

  • Hire a reputable home inspector.
  • Bring a home inspection checklist with you.
  • You and your broker should attend the home inspection.

Issue Request for Repair

  • If the home inspection turns up health and safety issues, issue a request for repair by asking the seller to address those issues or give you a credit for them.
  • Realize no home is perfect, and the inspector will find faults.

Remove Contingencies

  • Make sure your loan is firm and the appraisal is acceptable before removing your loan contingency.
  • If you do not remove contingencies, the seller can issue a request to perform and then cancel the contract, on top of demanding your deposit.

Do Final Walk-Through

  • Do not pass up doing a final walk-through.
  • Inspect the property to make sure it's in the same condition as when you agreed to buy it.
  • If you find a serious issue, address it now before you close.

Deposit Funds

  • Bring a certified check payable to escrow.
  • Expect escrow to pad the amount, so you will receive a refund after closing.
  • Consider asking your bank to wire the funds to escrow, saving you the hassle of waiting in line at the bank.

Close Escrow

  • Your property deed, seller's re conveyance and deed of trust will record in the public records.
  • Title will notify you and your broker when it records.
  • After recordation, unless your contract specifies otherwise, the property is yours -- change the locks immediately.

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Office Info

Choices Realty Northwest
17530 NE Union Hill Rd Suite 100
Redmond, WA 98052
Tel: (425) 828-9828
Fax: (425) 828-9869

17530 NE Union Hill Rd Suite 100, Redmond, WA 98052 :: Tel: (425) 828-9828 :: Fax: (425) 828-9869 :: Choices Realty Northwest | All Rights Reserved.
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