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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

About a week ago, a first-time buyer had a lot of questions and posted her question to Trulia. I took the time to answer her question in great detail and won a "Best Answer" on Trulia! You may have similar questions, so here it is:

Congratulations! Your response was selected as the Best Answer. Check out all the answers here:
Can someone tell me how this works in simple terms? I just want to buy a house for my soon to be family.Hello Bonnie, First of all, congratulations on your forthcoming family and for doing your homework before taking this first big step towards home ownership. Your down payment will vary depending upon the type of loan you get -- FHA, MSHDA, Conventional, VA, etc. Your best course of action is to speak with a lender. They will match your individual circumstances with a loan program. APR=annual percentage rate. This is the percentage rate that has all of the fees, etc. rolled in The lender, by law, is required to show this to you. It is not the interest rate you are paying year-after-year on your loan, but rather a rate computed based upon lender fees, appraisal fee, etc. that you are charged for that first year of the loan. There are many real estate companies -- commonly referred to as brokers. I work for a national company -- Prudential Snyder & Company. I started my career at a local company, and it was fine, but I believe in the power and leverage that a national presence can give you in terms of exposure, relocation properties, internet presence, etc. I respect the answer that you were given to interview several Realtors to determine what the best fit is for you for a buyer agent. I would be honored to be included. A foreclosure is a bank-owned property. The purchase process is much the same as if you were buying a resale from an individual except the pricing is usually lower, and there is additional paperwork -- called bank addendums -- to sign. Don't let this scare you. To throw another one in front of you, there are Short Sales! These are properties owned by an individual, but that individual's property value has dropped below the amount of money they need to pay off their mortgage. The additional wrinkle involved in this sale is that the seller can accept your offering price, but it then has to be approved by the lender/bank. An auction involves buying a home from an auction company. Basically, you bid on the house and highest bidder wins. When considering this, you should take a buyer agent with you who will have researched property values for the property being auctioned. A home inspection comes into play after you have an offer accepted on a property. You hire a person called an Contractor Inspector and they go over the home in detail checking things that you may not have noticed on your preview of the home such as the furnace, appliances, water pressure . . . they poke their head into the attic and check the insulation quality, look for visible mold, etc. And, of course, a mortgage payment is your monthly payment to the lender. Unless you are paying cash for the home, you will have to secure a loan -- called a mortgage -- from a bank or other type of lender. You pay this back over time . . . in monthly mortgage payments. I hope that I have helped answer some of your questions, but there will always be more -- especially since this is your first experience as a home buyer. I have a booklet for first time buyers which will walk you through the process [just let me know how I can get it to you], and I invite you to visit my website to see how I work with buyers. You can reach me on my cell at 734-754-3221. My website is
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- Your Trulia Voices team

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