Your Offer Was Accepted — Here’s What Happens Next
Finding out your offer to buy a new home was accepted is probably the second most exciting moment of the homebuying process (right behind the part where they actually hand you the keys, of course). But between those two moments, there are a number of things that need to happen.
You may feel like it’s a done deal, but the truth is that there are multiple hurdles still to clear. So, it’s important to know what the next steps are after your offer is accepted so that you don’t get tripped up while doing a victory lap.
Celebrate … a little
It’s definitely a win, so you should let yourself enjoy it. And then outline how you’re going to attack the rest of the steps.
Apply for a Mortgage
You more than likely were pre-approved for the amount you need, but you still need to formally apply for a mortgage. This is where you’ll get down to the nitty gritty details, so be prepared to advocate for yourself. Mortgages aren’t unlike other products out there: some are standard, and some have features that might make them a better fit for you.
Get an Appraisal
Lenders require that a house be appraised by a third party to make sure that the sale price is in line with a fair market value. This protects both the buyer and the lender, making it an important part of the process.
A home inspector will see what you likely don’t when it comes to your new home. From structural issues to roofing concerns, a general inspection is a must to make sure the house is as advertised. Additional inspections might be necessary, such as mold, radon, pests & insects, and lead paint for older houses.
Secure Closing Cost Funds
Your closing costs represent the fees associated with your home purchase. This often includes things like application fees, attorney fees, credit reports, inspection, private mortgage insurance (PMI), escrow deposits, etc. This is typically between 2 to 5 percent of the purchase price, so do the math and make sure that money is available. Or, consider a No Closing Cost mortgage option.
Get Homeowners Insurance
Shop around, compare rates and check out the reviews when it comes to customer service. Most offer bundling options, so consider that as well.
If any issues from inspections led to any additional requests for the sellers to fix something, this is the time to make sure it's been done. Again, it’s easy to get excited when you see the finish line but come in with a critical eye. If something doesn’t look right, say something. With all of your questions are answered, you’ll feel even better about the final step.
Celebrate … a lot!
You’ve spent months sweating the small stuff, so reward yourself. You’ve earned it.