Buying a home is a multiple-step process. Each “deal” has a certain cadence. Sometimes there are things you’ll need to do fairly quickly to meet a deadline, and other times you’ll get to relax and wait until the next to-do item.

  1. Start researching areas where you’d like to live, browse some homes online, and ensure your financial affairs are in order
  2. Select a real estate agent to represent you and discuss your wants and needs so they can narrow your search
  3. Get pre-approved for a mortgage so you’ll be able to make an offer with confidence you’ll be able to afford the home (your agent can provide guidance here)
  4. View homes for sale at open houses and at private showings with your agent
  5. Make an offer to purchase a home and negotiate until the seller accepts it
  6. Get the home inspected by a professional to ensure its in good working order and so you know what future maintenance will be required
  7. Apply for the mortgage so you can finance the purchase (80% of the purchase price is typical)
  8. Hire an attorney to prepare the Purchase and Sale Agreement (P&S) to protect your interests (your agent and lender can provide guidance here)
  9. Sign the P&S and deliver additional deposit funds to the seller (typically 5% of the purchase price)
  10. Officially buy the home at the “closing” where the legal title is transferred and the seller is paid