First Time Austin Area Home Buyers
Whether you’ve done it before or not, the challenge of buying a home can be daunting but should also be exciting. Buying a home involves a long-term commitment financially and emotionally, but it can also be a very exciting and rewarding experience. Our Homebuying Guide below provides information and resources to help answer some of the most common questions about the home buying process.
ROCK Properties Realty offers one of the most advanced interactive MLS property search websites in the Austin area to locate homes in the Austin – Round Rock area. Our Austin area buyer agents specialize in every neighborhood and subdivision throughout Travis, Williamson, Bell, Milam Burnet and Bastrop County. Contact one of our Austin area Realtors today at (512) 850-4510 for assistance and showings on homes for sale in Austin and Central, TX.
ROCK Properties Realty is ready to assist you and guide you through each step of the home buying process. We have helped hundreds of buyers purchase their homes in the Austin & Round Rock area. When you are ready to start your adventure or If there is something you’d like to know more about, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are happy to share our knowledge and do any research necessary to answer your questions. ROCK Properties Realty is here to help you work through the complex process of getting started, budgeting for a home, finding one, checking it out, learning buying’s key concepts, and getting a mortgage.
Before You Begin Your Home Search
Get Pre-Qualified For A Loan
Before you start visiting homes, one of the first steps is to determine how much home you can afford. Generally, this starts with a mortgage lender that you can find online or at your local bank. Mortgage lenders are experts on the home lending process and will provide advice and options regarding mortgage loans, interest rates, and loan pre-approval. Typically, a borrower is pre-qualified for a loan that amounts to 28%, or less, of their gross monthly income. In addition, if you know the amount of the monthly payment you would be comfortable paying, a mortgage specialist can calculate the price range for your home search. The mortgage lender will provide a loan pre-approval letter that will be included with your home offer to assure the seller that you are a serious buyer with the borrowing power close the sale. A seller is more likely to accept an offer from a buyer who already has funding versus one who still needs to qualify for a loan.
Identify Your Needs and Wants
After getting pre-qualified for a mortgage, your budget will help you separate your needs and wants. Sometimes buyers have to focus on what they really need while what they want can be limited by their budget. There is much to consider when looking for your ideal home. Location is one of the most important features, but there are many other factors that will be part of your final decision. While considering the basic features of your home, determine which criteria you absolutely cannot live without and which ones you are willing to budge on.
Some Typical Criteria May Include
- Neighborhood or subdivision
- School districts
- Proximity to work
- Proximity to shopping, restaurants, hospitals, etc.
- Number of Bedrooms
- Number of Bathrooms
- Storage space
- Lot sizes
- Water views, Bay front, Canal side or water proximity
- RV and/or Boat Parking
- Would you be okay with an HOA?
Choose an Agent
Once you have decided on the price range and the features you are interested in, your next step will be to decide whether you will search on your own or use the services of a Real Estate Agent. Real estate agents have access to all of the homes on the market. They have inside knowledge of a variety of homes that have either just been listed or are about to hit the market. They will research property listings for potential matches to your criteria and schedule showings for you at convenient times. You can work with an agent under a Buyer Representation agreement and receive advice and opinions, usually at no cost to the buyer. Remember, there are no out-of-pocket fees that you pay to the buyer’s agent. These costs are incurred by the seller.
The licensed agents at ROCK Properties understand the home buying process and are committed to keeping your best interests at heart. ROCK Properties has assisted home buyers in the Austin & Round Rock area for over 15 years and we are happy to share our experience to assist you in finding the best home to meet your goals and wishes. We will provide guidance to you during the contract negotiation phase of the selling process. We will also coordinate and schedule the home inspection, appraisal, and closing for you, as well as provide the documentation needed to secure your closing.
Beginning Your Home Search
Once you have selected an agent and determined what you are looking for in a home, it is time to start your active search for homes that interest you. You and your agent will consider homes and neighborhoods that match your criteria, schedule tours, and visit homes that match your interests. To help you find your home, our agents will utilize technologies, including the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), a personalized web portal, and email notifications of potential properties and price changes. With your ideas and your agent’s experience, ROCK Properties will assist you in finding the right home for you.
Making an Offer
ROCK Properties agents represent your best interests and have the experience to examine market conditions and comparable neighborhood sales in order to help you negotiate the best possible price. At ROCK Properties, your buyer’s agent can provide guidance on what is an acceptable offer, what you should notate or include in an offer, etc. From contract to closing, you can be confident that your ROCK Properties agent is working in your best interest and will manage all paperwork and negotiations. Additionally, they will communicate through the entire process, answer any questions you may have, and offer experienced advice along the way.
Contract to Closing
With a negotiated contract in hand, your ROCK Properties Realty agent will guide you through the inspection process. This time period allows you to complete an assessment of the property’s condition and evaluate any repairs. Prior to your scheduled closing, your agent will review all contract, amendment provisions, and closing documents with you and will attend the closing to ensure all details are addressed and your interests are represented. Usually, at the time an offer is accepted, or after you have a commitment from your lender, a date and time will be arranged for your closing. The closing procedures will be handled by an attorney or Title Company specified by the contract. Once the contract has funded you will officially be a NEW HOMEOWNER.
If you’re searching for a single-family home or an investment property in Austin | Round Rock, ROCK Properties will gladly devote their time and efforts to finding just the best homes that suit your requirements. We strive to make the task of searching for a new Austin | Round Rock home as easy and enjoyable as possible for all our clients!