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For Buyers

What is my first step in the buying process?

The Mortgage Pre-Approval – Unless you are paying cash for a property you will need a mortgage. Pre-approval for a loan will help you determine the price range you can afford.

How much  do I need for a downpayment?

This varies from buyer to buyer and loan type to loan type. Your loan officer will walk you through the options. 

As a buyer do I have to pay a Realtor fee?

In most cases, you do not have to pay your Realtor to assist in purchasing the home. The sellers typically pay the listing firm, who in turn pays the buyers firm on completion of a sale. There are instances where a buyer will sign a Buyers Agent Agreement and may be responsible for the Realtor Fee, assuming the seller is not paying a commission. Your Realtor will explain this agreement in further detail.

Do I need to hire an attorney?

In states such as Illinois, it's highly recommended to hire a real estate attorney for the home purchase. An attorney will help explain the closing documents and navigate you through the closing process.

Upon acceptance of an offer to purchase, what are the next steps?

In Illinois, the clock starts ticking on 3-time sensitive

  1. Inspection Contingency

  2. Attorney Approval Contingency

  3. Mortgage contingency. The Inspection and Attorney Contingency are usually completed within 5 business days of contract acceptance and the Mortgage Contingency is with 30 days of acceptance.

What is the time frame to purchase a home?

Typically 30 to 45 days. Time varies by transaction, but once a home is identified, offer submitted and accepted, a typical deals takes between 30 to 45 days from contract to close.

What credit score do I need to buy a home?

A credit score of 620 and above is recommended. If you fall below this threshold, speak with your loan officer to see what options are available.

Do I need to hire an inspector once I have an accepted contract?

Its highly recommended to hire a certified inspector to
evaluate the home. A seasoned inspector, having seen hundreds of homes, will go top to bottom to identify potential cosmetic and structural issues.

What is an earnest money deposit?

Earnest money is a good faith deposit by the buyer, typically held by the listing real estate companies escrow account. The purpose of the deposit is to show the seller you are serious about purchasing the home. The amount that is deposited is subtracted from the final figure that the buyer pays at the closing table. The amount of earnest money varies depending on the transaction. In most cases, the larger the deposit, the stronger an offer looks to the seller.

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