Once an offer or counteroffer has been agreed to by both the buyers and sellers, you are under contract. When that happens, there are multiple tasks that need to happen in a timely manner. Many of these tasks will be performed by us, your lender, and the title company.
Most contracts involve a security deposit or earnest money deposit that will be placed in escrow pending the closing of the transaction. Often this will be held in an escrow account by the title company or one of the real estate brokers.
If the home is situated in a community with a homeowners' association or is a condominium or other special type of property, you will want to obtain copies of any association documents, bylaws, budgets, etc., so you can be fully informed. You will also need a home inspection and we also recommend you obtain a termite inspection. Other inspections can also be performed at your discretion. If there is a survey or plat, we will try to obtain a copy from the seller and/or through public records.
The home inspection should be completed as soon as possible after the contract, typically within the first two weeks. If there are any issues with the property, you need to know right away so we can discuss remedies with the seller.
You will also need to make a formal loan application with your lender as soon as the contract is signed. You will need to fill out an application, provide the lender with a copy of the contract (which we can do for you), and the lender will likely need to obtain a credit report and do their underwriting process. The lender will typically take care of ordering an appraisal on the property once they have initially approved you from a credit standpoint.
We will start the title insurance process with the title company after you are under contract. The title company will search the property history and make sure the seller is capable of delivering good title to you at closing. The title company may also set forth specific requirements that need to be satisfied for the closing, and they will work with your lender to estimate the closing costs and settlement figures for closing.
There is a lot to keep track of between signing your contract and closing the purchase of your new home. Don't worry, we are here to guide you throughout this process.