Roles - Who Does What When
A home purchase is your largest financial transaction. And, it can be your most confusing.
There are 3 individuals with distinct roles. If done correctly, it is an efficient, pleasant, and rewarding.
Here are the 3 key players and the roles they play.
Real Estate Realtor – Identify the Best House: Eliminate homes that do not meet your buying criteria or are otherwise undesirable and present homes that suit your criteria. Help you determine a "good buy" and property that is in your best interest. Negotiate the best deal for you.
Loan Officer – Me - Identify the Best Loan: Identify the loan that best meets your situation. Keep you and your Realtor informed of your loan status. (Your personal information is confidential and your realtor only gets progress data.) Submit the loan application with the best rates and fees to the best suited bank.
You – The Buyer – Identify What is Best For You: Inform your Realtor on concerns on properties seen and me on changed finances. Provide documentation quickly. Identify the type of home and neighborhood that is ideal for you AND the total amount of debt you want to handle: both monthly payments and long term.
ONCE YOU FIND A HOME
The Realtor - Draws Up The Contract: Negotiates the best deal for you, this includes: purchase price, conditions for the sale (i.e., if the inspection finds problems in the home, who pays for the repairs?), timing and financing (who pays closing costs? What is the final price?) Provides you names of home and termite inspectors and other local professionals (such as movers, insurance agents, realty lawyers, decorators, and so on) to help you move.
Your Loan Officer - ME! - Manage the Loan: Order the appraisal and title (banks use specific certified appraisers). Collects and organizes all the points needing to be addressed and submits the final loan application to the bank. Provides you periodic updates on closing costs and timing. I monitor your credit so you don't worry about it. In short, if you need to get anything, anything at all, to get your final approval, I will reach out to you. I will let you know within minutes of my finding out.
You - Order Inspection and Try Not to Get TOO Stressed: Order an inspection (so you can review any defects in property) - get a WIN MIT (Wind Mitigation) Inspection as that can save you several hundred dollars a year. If you have an established relationship with an insurance agent, then get a Hazard Insurance Quote. But please ask me for the proper language to save you effort. I will get you several quotes at the proper time. Prepare your financing and provide what other documentation that I will need.
But most important, relax – waiting for final approval and a “clear to close” is considerably beyond your control. A “promise to get back” by the bank can turn into 3 day wait.
If you like to be in control, to have everything mapped out and a plan executed, you will find the loan process painful. There are multiple moving pieces in a loan process, and often completing one item serves to open up 2 items. Trying to manage the process only adds stress and will frustrate you.
In theory, you are the customer and should be the center of all attention. In reality, the bank controls the money and when it releases it. When a bank “says” 3 days it could be 10 days and there is no penalty.
But know that everybody is working for you. The Realtor and I only make money if you finally close on the loan and get your home. We are not as emotionally attached as you, but are highly motivated to get you that loan.
A couple of listless days or weeks will seem a pain soaked eternity, but keeping focus on the happiness you and your loved ones will have with a new home is your reward. Trust me I want to close YESTERDAY.