Buying: Now What?
Congratulations, you are on your way to owning your very own home! Follow these suggestions (and your Realtors's advice) so that the settlement and closing with go as smooth as possible.
You will be asked for a down payment on the home you are purchasing. You can choose to put down as much or as little as you want (depending on your mortgage), but remember, the more you put down toward the total price of your home, the less time it will take you to pay off and the less your mortgage payments will be every month.
During this period of purchasing your home, you are going to need legal representation to act as an independent third party so that you know when and who to give your money to get the keys to your new home. The law firm will hold your deposit and coordinate much of the activity that goes on during the closing period. Make sure that there are sufficient funds in your account to cover closing costs.
1. The period that you are "working towards closing" is often at least 30 days, but may be longer or shorter. During this time, each item specified in the contract must be completed satisfactorily. Each contract is different, but most include the following: 1. Home inspection condition: this should be completed as soon as possible after the contract to purchase is signed as unsatisfactory results of the inspection may mean that you will want to cancel the contract, negotiate repairs or price.
2. Financing condition: Once the contract is signed, you have a period of time to secure funding. If, for any reason, you are unable to secure funding during the period of time granted to you by the contract (and the seller will not provide a written extension of time), you may choose to cancel the purchase contract.
3. A requirement that the seller must provide marketable title. Your attorney will review the title. The title must be "clear" to ensure that you do not have legal issues regarding your ownership. Check into local and provincial regulations regarding property transfer and make sure that you and/or the seller have complied with them.
4. Secure homeowner's insurance. This will probably be required before you can close the sale. Due to such requirements as special fire and earthquake insurance, obtaining this insurance may require a lengthy period of time. It would be in your best interest to apply for insurance as soon as possible after the contract is signed.
5. Contact your local utility companies to schedule to have services turned on and accounts in your name upon closing.
6. Schedule the final walk-through inspection. At this time, you should make sure that the property is exactly as the contract says it should be. What you thought to be a "permanently attached" chandelier that would come with the property might have been removed by the seller and replaced with a different fixture entirely. Ask your Realtor about including these kinds of items so you save money.
You've made it! Once the sale has closed, you're the proud owner of a new home. Congratulations!