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Buying or selling a home in Needham? Louis Wolfson & Co. can help.

Buying a home intimidates most people, but it isn't very complicated with a bit of planning ahead of time. I like to provide buyers with an overview of the entire deal so they know exactly what to expect. These are my nine steps to buying a home. Should you have any questions about this information or if you're prepared to get started, you can contact me here or e-mail me at .

Step 1 – Prepare to purchase a home
Before you commence your home search, there are several things you should do. When you start your search, you'll probably want to put together a checklist of features you need, get a feel for what neighborhoods and school districts you want to live in, and begin planning around your budget. A good rule of thumb to adhere to is that your mortgage payment should be 30 percent of your net monthly income.

Step 2 – Communicate with a real estate agent
That's where I can help. We can book a time to get together so we can talk about why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your plans for the future. We'll talk about the mortgage and housing industries, other economic factors that may potentially affect your purchase today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and school districts in the Needham area.

I'll also assist you with getting started on your loan. I partner with some of the finest mortgage professionals in Needham, so you can rest assured that you're in great hands. They will assist you in deciding which type of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Begin looking for a home
After our initial meeting, I'll begin looking for available homes on the market that are a good fit for you. I'll preview most of the homes and exclude the duds, and then we'll book appointments to tour the houses when it's most convenient for you.

When we view the homes, I'll call attention to good features and bad ones. I'll even ask you what things you like and don't like. It's common for buyers to revise their must-have list as we view homes and some things become more necessary than others. If that happens, I'll go back through all the listings once more and narrow it down to the house you've been dreaming about.

Step 4 – Get a grasp of the market
My awareness of the Needham home market is a necessary element in your home search. I'm informed of all the neighborhoods and school districts, and I will let you know which neighborhoods are "hot" and warrant prompt action and the ones that are "cold" and allow for careful consideration.

As we view houses, I'll let you know when the seller's list price has room for negotiation and when I think the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be mindful and make sure you ask lots of questions, as every REALTOR in Needham will claim to comprehend the home market. If things don't add up, call me at (617) 799-3326 or e-mail me at , and I'd be happy to answer any questions you might have. My understanding of the market will keep you a step ahead through the entire process.

Step 5 – Find the house of your dreams
I'm sure we'll find the house of your dreams in Needham. When we do, I'll carefully develop your home purchase offer. The offer will be tailored exactly to your needs and the home, including a lot of contingencies. A few examples are obtaining financing, carrying out the inspection, and a clear title.

Upon submitting your offer, you'll probably need to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit made to the home seller to secure an offer to buy the property, and it's often put towards the closing costs. If the offer is accepted, we should close within 30 to 60 days after. This allows ample time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
A lot of contracts aren't closed on the beginning offer, and it's widely common to receive a counter offer. Don't let it discourage you. We'll talk over whether or not to accept the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and move on.

How aggressively we negotiate the deal depends on market circumstances. In addition, we'll work within your financing limits. And at the end of the day, we'll formulate a deal that works well for you.

Step 7 – Secure your loan
Once the contract is finished, you'll start working with your lender to close the loan. If you've been pre-qualified, it won't be a long process at all, but you'll want to stay in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll handle all the property information your lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
Your lender will provide you with a Loan Estimate (LE) detailing your closing costs within three days of taking your loan application. You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) of closing costs from your lender within three days of receiving your loan application. This estimate is formed from the loan amount, and RESPA requirements order that it has to include all closing costs and be within a strict range of accuracy. I'll study the estimate and let you know if it all looks all right.

Then it's time to close on your home. This should happen at a title company or escrow office and is often a smooth and hassle-free occasion.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything, simply call me at (617) 799-3326 or e-mail me at .

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