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No one said buying a home couldn’t be easy

how to buy a house

Life can be stressful — so stressful, in fact, that two researchers came up with a real-life stress scale way back in 1967. By assessing the medical records of more than 5,000 patients to correlate illness and stressful life events, The Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale was made. And as much as we hear that buying a house can be extra-stressful, we were delighted to find that it didn’t even make the top 10.

Take a deep breath

Life circumstances like death, marriage, divorce, and retirement may throw you off course, but according to the research-backed stress scale, there’s every chance that buying a house can be easy. Whenever we meet with potential homebuyers, we always let them in on a little secret: The home buying process can look complicated, when it’s actually pretty straightforward.

Talk about easy. You can start by getting prequalified for your new home online.

Buying a house is simple enough to be broken down into five steps:

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1. First, you’ll get prequalified.

how to buy a house

Here’s where most people get it backward right out of the gate, spending weeks and even months of their time looking for the wrong house. Getting prequalified first can give you the security of knowing that your loan is already locked and loaded, ready to go when you find the perfect place. Being prequalified also gives you a stronger bargaining chip to use when making an offer. Sellers are more likely to make a deal with a prequalified buyer who means business.

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2. Then, you’ll start shopping.

how to buy a house

It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for — the chance to comb through real estate listings and schedule some in-person showings. Your mortgage lender helped you get the money by getting you prequalified, and your realtor is going to help you get in the door. This is again where prequalification is critical: Once your loan amount has been preset, your realtor will be able to show you homes that fit within your price range.

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3. Next, you’ll pick a loan product.

how to buy a house

You’ve gotten prequalified, but there are still many different types of mortgage loans to choose from with different financing options available. You may have been given multiple loan product options during the prequalification process (step 1), but know that some products or programs may be subject to change based on the property you decide to buy. In this step, you’re going to get to know your loan officer a whole lot better as you work together and fine-tune the right loan program to meet your short-term and long-term goals. This is one time when the old saying holds true: When working with your mortgage lender, there’s no such thing as a stupid question.

If you have questions, we have answers aplenty. Click here to find a loan officer near you.

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4. Now, you’ll get final loan approval.

how to buy a house

You’ve finally found your dream home, gotten your offer accepted, and made it through the appraisal and inspection in one piece. Before you post that celebratory Facebook status, you’ll still need to get through the final approval process. Your loan officer will collect the rest of your paperwork, including title work, flood certification, and homeowner’s insurance, to give you the seal of approval on your loan.

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5. Last but not least, you’ll close on your new home.

how to buy a house

As hectic as it might be, this is the time to celebrate. On closing day, which is also moving day, you’ll meet with the seller to transfer the property and close the transaction. To make it happen, you’ll need a certified or cashier’s check, made payable to yourself and ready to be endorsed to the title company. Take a moment to review the “Closing Disclosure,” sign the mortgage note, receive the deed from the seller, and pat yourself on the back. It’s a done deal.

If you’re a homeowner who’s ready to refinance, we can help with that too. Find out more here.

It seems almost greedy to want to make buying a house even easier, but of course, we’ve got an app for that. LoanFly can help to streamline the process from start to finish — with a great search function for home listings and a handy Borrower Portal to help you quickly prequalify and review your loan each step of the way. If you’re ready to buy, your mortgage lender can help you get the party started, and LoanFly can keep you company until closing day.

This information is meant as a guide to help streamline the loan process and should not be considered as requirements when buying a home. Because each borrower’s individual situation and needs vary, please contact your Loan Officer before undertaking these and any other actions that may affect your loan transaction.

For educational purposes only. Please contact your qualified professional for specific guidance.

Sources are deemed reliable but not guaranteed.