Your offer to purchase a home was just accepted, so what’s next?

First, congratulations!  For most people, purchasing a home is the largest purchase they will ever make.  We want to make sure everything goes smooth from now until closing day for you.

These are some of the immediate next steps:

  • EMD – Per terms in the contract, you may need to submit an earnest money deposit (EMD).  This can usually be paid by wiring funds or with a personal check.  The funds will be held in “escrow” as your good faith in purchasing the home.  These funds can usually be returned to you if all contingencies are not met and you decide to void the contract.  However, these funds will likely go to the Seller if you back out of the contract for no good reason (also called default).  As long as the sale goes through, these funds will be applied to your down payment and/or closing costs. 
  • Inspection(s) – Per terms of the contract, you may be permitted to perform certain inspections (home inspection, radon test, termite, etc.).  We can gladly assist you in setting these up, however, you will have a direct relationship with the inspector(s).  You will make payment to them … and they will be directly responsible to you for their services.
  • Lender coordination – If you are financing the purchase, you will need to be responsive to the lender for any documents or information they need.  They will also coordinate with you about acquiring home owners insurance for the property.
  • HOA and/or Condo resale documents – If the property is located in a homeowners or condominium association, the Seller will be responsible for acquiring a resale disclosure packet which will be sent to you for review.  Per the Virginia Residential Property Disclosure Act, you have an opportunity to terminate the contract within three days of packet delivery.

Following that, these are some of the final steps before closing:

  • Appraisal – If you are financing the purchase, the Lender will order an appraisal for the property.  You want the appraised value to equal or exceed the sales price.  If not, there may be terms for backing out of the contract by both the Seller and Buyer.  Also, the appraisal may contain lender required repairs before they will grant the loan.
  • Settlement company – the settlement company will send out forms for you to fill out regarding your name, SSN, and questions about how you will take title, if you want a survey of the property, etc.
  • Utilities – Please ensure you coordinate, at least a week in advance, to have utilities put in your name on the scheduled closing date.  For assistance, you will be sent an email from “Updater.”  This is a service provided by our brokerage which can assist you in utility turn-on, transfer, mail forwarding, etc.
  • CD – At least three days prior to closing, the lender should send you a closing disclosure (CD) for your review.  It includes the loan terms, your projected monthly payments, and how much you will pay in fees and other costs to get your mortgage (closing costs).  It is very important you review and sign this 3 days before closing or else closing may be delayed.
  • Final Walkthrough – Your agent will take you to the property sometime within a week of closing to ensure the property is in acceptable condition per terms in the contract.

And finally:

  • Settlement/Closing – This will take approximately one hour at the settlement company.  We will help you schedule this.  You will be signing all of the necessary paperwork.  Please be sure to bring your drivers license and any certified funds per the CD.  Many Buyers elect to wire the funds prior to closing.  After the signing is done, you will be presented with keys to your new home!