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Monday, September 14, 2015

Buying a Home in Florida: Contract to Closing in 20 Steps!

If one is relocating to Florida and intends to purchase a home it is important to have an understanding of the home buying process in Florida.

Over the years I have heard the phrase "that isn't how we do that back home" quite a few times.  I am not saying the way one bought a house in another state is the wrong way but rather the the process is different here in Florida.

Actually there are differences from county to county within the state of Florida.  Consider title insurance for example, in Brevard County it is customary for the seller to pay for the buyer's title policy while in other counties it is a buyer responsibility.  Real estate is truly local.

I recommend buyers, even if experienced, ask for an overview of the home purchase process to make sure you and your agent are on the same page.  Most real estate agents will do this automatically as part of their standard practice. 

Here is a very general outline of the home purchase process as it relates to buying a house in Brevard County, Florida.  While the below steps are not all inclusive buyers must remember that with the home purchase process time is of the essence with items to be accomplished within specified time periods.
  • Choose your real estate agent. 
  • Choose lender. 
  • Identify Budget based on pre-approval, funds available and desires.
  • Identify area of home search. 
  • Determine characteristics of target property.  
  • Find and negotiate offer. 
  • Deposit escrow funds.
  • Conduct property inspections (home, pool, termite, septic system, etc.).   There is an order to the inspection process.  I prefer a buyer have the house inspected first.  If OK, then spend the money for septic and termite inspections. The property inspection contingency is important as it provides a buyer with a chance to walk away if the results are not acceptable. 
  • Review association rules and documents (budget, finances, etc.).  This, along with the inspections, is part of the due diligence process. 
  • Check out local schools, sexual predator lists, etc.  Remember, sellers disclose, buyers verify.
  • Remove property inspection contingency. 
  • Obtain home owner insurance binder.  
  • Mortgage appraisal completed.  Loan commitment received. 
  • Remove financing contingency.  
  • Survey conducted.   After all the inspection have been competed and the mortgage lined up then have the survey done.
  • Review closing statements.  
  • Obtain certified funds/wiring instructions to close.  Be careful here...Know who you are communicating with before clicking on email links.
  • Perform final walk through.  
  • Sign closing documents.
  • Done...take your keys and go home!
agent@moving2brevard.comThe above process does not contain every step in an exact order.  Every real estate agent operates independently but the above should provide a general idea of the process.

If you have questions about the home buying process in Brevard County, Florida, call me at 321-693-3850. 

If you prefer, send me an email.

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