Buyers guideline to purchasing Real Estate

When making an offer, put yourself in the seller’s shoes and image how they will react to everything you’re about to put in your offer.  Here’s a general overview of making a purchase of real estate and hopefully getting your offer accepted.  Be sure to have your pre-approval letter from your lender. Here’s a link to some of the information that most lenders will be asking from you.

Remember, oral promises are not legally enforceable when it comes to the sale of real estate.  Be sure to have your offer communicated in writing.

Have your Realtor do a comparative market analysis for you.  That will show you the fair market value of the property.  The following factors could affect your offer price.
1) Property condition
2) New home improvements
3) Market conditions (that old supply and demand again)
4) Seller’s motivation
5) Seller concessions – do you want them to give you a carpet allowance?
6) Asking the seller to help you with your closing cost and prepaids.  You may expect to pay a little more if so.

Earnest Money:
In most offers, earnest money is in the form of a check or a promissory note.  Higher the earnest money in an offer shows the seller your commitment to making the purchase.

Home Inspection:
Don’t skip this step.  In most cases it’s not worth taking the risk of buying a home without a professional inspection.  Inspectors will check areas of the home that are not visible from the inside or the outside.  Inspectors generally take about 3 hours to complete their thorough inspection.  This includes the attic and crawl spaces.  They also will check the wiring, plumbing and heat/cooling systems.  You can also do a walk through of the home with your Realtor before closing.  Not a bad idea either after the seller has moved out.

Make sure you received all the seller property disclosures.  Federal law requires the seller to give you a lead base paint disclosure if the property was built prior to 1978.  It is also an Oregon State Law for the seller to give a buyer a disclosure of the home.  The buyer has 5 business days to cancel the sale agreement after they have received the seller’s disclosure statement.

Multiple Offers:
It doesn’t have to be a hot market for a seller to have the luxury of choosing between multiple offers on their property.  In most cases the seller will give the opportunity for buyers to make their highest and best offer.  Often buyers will ask if they can find out what the other offer is.  In almost all cases, sellers Realtors are not allowed to give out information that can help one party out over another.