When a new buyer first approaches their initial Mecosta County home buying effort, chances are they have only a general idea of what the process involves. Although they are successful people who have arrived at a juncture in their lives and careers where it’s now possible to buy a home of their own, most of the details — and even the terminology — is specific to this single kind of transaction. More than in most other purchases, there are a number of junctures where negotiations determine the outcome.
It’s pretty common to assume that their Mecosta County Area home buying venture can be wrapped up with a single offer — one that will either be accepted or not. But along the way, from the home loan provider to the title insurer to the seller, other bargaining points frequently appear.
A first Mecosta County home buying venture is sure to run more smoothly if these basics don’t come as a bolt from the blue. Most of these five fundamental bargaining point basics might be guessed at, but anticipating them all will put any first-time buyer in a much better prepared position:
- Down payment. It’s not true that buyers must put 20% down to buy a house. Or 10%. The amount of the down payment is a bargaining point with the lender, who usually offers trade-off choices.
- Pre-qualification/Pre-approval. The difference between the two terms can make a difference in how eager some sellers are to talk turkey. Pre-qualified means the lender has received a potential borrower’s information; Pre-approved means the bank has verified it, which presents the buyer in a stronger light.
- Closing costs. The down payment isn’t the only “up front” cost: there are a variety of other home-buying fees and charges that must be paid before the deal is financed. It’s a myth that the seller is obligated to pay closing costs — it can be a bargaining point, though.
- Home inspection. The inspection report informs the buyer what might need to be fixed now or at some future time. If the buyer has made an offer contingent on a flawless report, if problems are identified the seller can offer to correct them, pay a named amount for a cash-back credit — or refuse (a “take it or leave it” stance). In any case, it’s another bargaining point.
- Asking Price/Offering Price. This is the bargaining point that is fundamental in every local home buying venture. The seller can accept, reject, or compromise with a counter-offer. Then again, if more than one buyer is interested in a property, stand back: a bidding war could erupt!
With all these (and there can be more) bargaining points to deal with, a first-time buyer might feel intimidated. That’s where being able to rely on the experience of a veteran Mecosta County Area real estate agent is such an advantage. It’s not just that you won’t be surprised by steps in the process — you will have access to the approaches and tactics that have led to success in the post. It’s another good reason why a strategic first call will be to my office!