As many of you know I was an educator for 25 years, most of those year spent teaching math (I sooo miss Algebra and Geometry – if you need a spruce up let me know!).  😊   One key protocol that I taught was “Order of Operations”, we used a mnemonic, PEMDAS, to help to remember order (Parentheses, Exponents, Multiply/Divide, Add/Subtract).  Anyhow, I’ve borrowed this order and applied it to the buying process below.

Prequalify with a lender – huge, huge to know what you can afford before you fall in love and also huge to make sure you’re working with a “good” lender.  The home buying process can be stressful and a lender who doesn’t provide good customer service can really be an ugly experience!!!  If you need a lender referral I work with some great ones I am happy to recommend.

Educate- educate yourself about the pros and cons of different locales (commute to work, nearby amenities, proximity to activities you like to do).  Then my team (lender, title/escrow, inspector) and I will help you to learn about types of loan, the process, house systems, etc.  We’ll make sure you know what you need to know when you need to know it – all tests are open book!

Make a list – of all of the items you’d like your house to include (know that this list will become a compromise at some point).  That said, it’s good to know your deal breakers so that you don’t waste time . .. for example, I-5 as a backyard probably isn’t hugely desirable.

Determine a timeline. Can you be patient, or do we need to get aggressive before you are having to look for a rental situation?

Ask – lots of questions, always!!

Shop – once you have a clear idea of budget, locale and what it is you’re looking for you can begin to shop.  I always recommend online research to give you a feel about what your budget will allow and firm up what appeals to you.  I can send current inventory and then keep a watch for new opportunities as they arise.  As we begin to tour, your “filter” will become even more clear and when we find “the one” we’ll be ready to jump on it.

Once you find the house that you want to make a “home” I will help you frame your offer for success.  Once all elements of a contract are agreed upon (purchase price, included elements, closing date, etc.) then you begin practicing your due diligence.  This will include title search,  home inspection (which can bring about additional negotiating), and the lender appraisal.  There are many moving parts that I will help you navigate as I provide frequent “learning opportunities” and reminders so that each step of the process is fully understood.  I tend to “drip” information as needed (because all of the info at once can be overwhelming)  and then continue the spiral to review the past, understand the immediate and prepare for what comes next. – kind of like how I taught.  😊