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Q: What happens after an offer is accepted?

A: Once you go into escrow, many items still need to be reviewed, discussed and inspected as you move forward in the process. Here are some of the things that are part of this process until you close escrow.
  • Appraisal and Mortgage Financing: You lender will need to be notified when you obtain an accepted offer, and once you’ve completed the inspection process, get your appraisal ordered and start resubmitting pay stubs, mutual fund statements and other documents the lender requests. Lock in your interest rate, points and loan terms. Obtain a copy of terms in writing.
  • Home Inspections and Renegotiations: Schedule a home inspection and have an independent, licensed and insured inspector go through the property to look for problems. The inspector will issue a report listing all deficiencies. You can then get quotes from a contractor or other professional to determine the cost of any desired repairs. Then your real estate professional from John Rea Realty will negotiate on your behalf with the seller for, hopefully, some additional fixes and/or cash credits at closing.
  • Title Insurance and HOA Docs Review, Plat/Survey: Look through the estimated HUD-1 costs, title abstract, title insurance policy schedule of exclusions and all other documents. You may choose to have a survey done and walk the property to see if there are any encumbrances (get the title company to plot the easements). This is the time, before you close escrow, to figure out if there are any title or physical property issues that pose a problem. If the property is in a common interest development, review all the homeowner’s association documents.
  • Property and Liability Insurance: You will need to meet with an insurance agent and make sure to discuss and procure the proper type and amount of home insurance that you'll need.
  • Review Closing Documents: Soon, you will be ready to sign documents, fund the down payment and verify the lender costs match the good faith estimate you were given. You will receive copies of all escrow documents for review. Make sure to read and review all these documents before you sign off that they are acceptable to you.
  • Close Escrow: You will fund your down payment, the bank will fund the mortgage loan, escrow and title will prepare all documents to be signed and account for all funds. After all documents are signed, the seller will receive a check and the buyer will receive keys to their new property.

Q: Why should I use a buyer's agent?

A: A buyer agent works to protect your best interests by providing complete and professional guidance to you.

The agent you hire to represent you will not disclose confidential information regarding motivation, price and terms, or anything else of a personal nature to the seller or seller's agent without your permission to do so. In addition, the buyer's agent will undertake a level of diligence and discovery that will give you the necessary information to make an informed decision as to the property you wish to purchase. The buyer's agent will search for all available properties for sale by owner, unlisted properties, new construction, foreclosures, and others and will not limit their showings to properties they have listed.

They will assist you with analyzing the properties, allowing you to make informed comparisons. The agent will do a market analysis on the property and will provide you with an offering range for that particular property. They will then set a negotiating strategy for you to assist you in acquiring the property at the lowest price and best terms possible for your situation. The buyer's agent will complete an offer to purchase that is beneficial to you as the buyer, and contains the contingencies and protective clauses you need.

The buyer’s agent will continue to negotiate on your behalf until the transaction is complete.