Why do you want to move? Often the reasons can’t be simplified down to a single one. Maybe you need more space, or you want to move into a better school district before your child enters kindergarten. Or maybe you need to relocate for work.
The bottom line is, the path to owning a new home is a winding one, and that’s why you need a roadmap to get you there safely with as few detours as possible.
Where do you start?
The first stop is always a look into your finances. What are you paying on your home now? How much have you been able to put away? Have you recently gotten a raise, or had to take a pay cut?
Any good REALTOR® will tell you to get pre-approved for a home loan before you start your home search. If you’re a first-time buyer, you can ask your mortgage company or the bank about an FHA-insured loan. Pre-approval will give you the clearest possible picture of the range of houses you can afford.
Pick your agent.
A REALTOR® is a like a rafting guide who leads you safely through the rapids on a river. They know all the trouble spots on the journey, and point them out to you long before you come across them.
All of our agents are REALTORS® certified by the Greater Springfield Board of Realtors. They have a deep knowledge of the housing market in Springfield and surrounding areas. They use this knowledge to write the best offers, negotiate at the closing table, and make sure no stone is left unturned.
How do I search for a home?
Once you’ve set a budget, you should make a list of priorities. Label certain things “must-haves”, others “would like to have”, certain things that are dealbreakers, and some things that you could tolerate if the new home fit all the other criteria on your list.
With that list you can begin to search locations and properties that fit your needs. Many people don’t know that REALTOR® boards all over the country maintain databases of all the properties listed by licensed REALTORS® in the area. The entire database for Springfield and surrounding areas is searchable on our website right here.
With the search tool, you can choose your location, your desired square footage, number of beds and baths, and price range to get a complete list of REALTOR®-listed properties in the Springfield area.
Once you’ve made a shortlist, all you need to do is tour the houses with your REALTOR® and learn the nitty gritty on each house. You’ll see all the best houses in your range, narrowing down the list to your favorite home.
You will work with your REALTOR® to write an offer for your asking price, negotiating with the sellers if necessary. When you agree on a price, the next steps are:
- Have a home inspection done within 10 days, and make a list of repairs that you would like to see completed before you close.
- Have a title company run a check on the home, making sure that everything is free and clear. When everything checks out, you’ll sign a stack of papers that makes everything official.
Give us a call at 417-818-1237 or set up an appointment with us online. We can guide you safely into your new dream home and help you handle anything that comes up in the home buying process.