Are you purchasing a new home? Shannon Wade Henley can help.

For most people, buying a home can be an intimidating event. However, with a bit of planning ahead of time, it's not all that hard. I like to supply buyers with a road map of the entire deal so they understand exactly what to expect. Here are my nine steps to purchasing a home.

When you're ready to get started, just contact me here or send me e-mail. I'm happy to answer any questions you have regarding this information.

Step 1 – Prepare to purchase a home
Prior to starting your home search, there are many things you need to do. When you begin your search, you'll probably want to assemble a checklist of features you need to have, get a feeling for what neighborhoods and school districts you'd like to live in, and start planning your budget. Keeping your mortgage payment less than a third of your net monthly income is a good rule of thumb to go by.

Step 2 – Get with local Realtor 
This is where Shannon Wade Henley can help. I can set up a time to get together so we can talk about why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your future plans. We'll discuss neighborhoods, school districts in the local area, the mortgage and housing industries, and any other economic factors that may affect your purchase today or in the future.

I can also help you facilitate the loan process. There are some excellent local mortgage professionals that I work with on a daily basis, so you'll be in great hands. They'll help you figure out which type of loan is best for you, as well as help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Begin looking
Following our first meeting, I'll start finding homes on the market that are good for you. I'll get a sneak peek of many of the homes and eliminate the bad ones, and then we'll schedule appointments to view the houses whenever it's most convenient for you.

As we tour the homes, I'll show you the good features, as well as bad ones. And I'll ask you to talk about things you like and dislike. Usually, buyers amend their list of must-haves as we view homes and some things become more crucial than others. If that happens, I'll search the listings another time and narrow it down to the house you've been waiting for.

Step 4 – Get a grasp of the housing market
My awareness of the local home market is a necessary benefit in your house search. I'm familiar with all the neighborhoods and schools, and I'll let you know some neighborhoods are "hot" and call for immediate action and the others that are "cold" and allow for careful analysis.

When we tour houses, I'll let you know when the seller's list price has room for negotiation and also when I believe the home is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, trust your instincts and make sure you ask plenty of questions, as every REALTOR® will convince you they understand the home market. If it seems like they don't know everything, contact me at 850-217-4530 or e-mail me at, and I'd be glad to answer any questions you might have. My understanding of the market will keep you a step above the rest through the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find your dream house
I know we'll find the home of your dreams. When that happens, I'll meticulously develop your home purchase offer. The offer will be tailored exactly to your needs, including several contingencies. A few examples are getting financing, completing the home inspection, and a clear title.

Let Shannon Wade Henley guide you through finding your dream home in Mary Esther Upon presenting your purchase offer, you'll likely need to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit made to a home seller to secure the offer to purchase the property and is often applied to the closing costs. If your offer is accepted by the seller, we should close within 30 to 60 days after. This allows plenty of time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
Unfortunately most contracts aren't closed on the initial offer. It's really common to receive a counter offer. Don't let this discourage you. We'll figure out whether or not to agree to the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and go on.

How aggressively we negotiate the contract depends on the state of the market. We'll also work within your financing constraints. And at the end of the day, we'll assemble a deal that works well for you.

Step 7 – Secure financing
Upon signing the contract, you'll start working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. If you're pre-approved, this shouldn't take long at all. But you'll want to keep in close contact with your lender. And I'll look after all the property information your lender will need to close the loan.>

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) detailing closing costs from your mortgage lender within three days of receiving your application. This estimate depends on the loan amount. RESPA requirements order that it has to contain all closing costs and be within a close range of accuracy, and I'll review the estimate and let you know if everything looks good.

Then we'll close on your home. This will probably happen at a title company or escrow office and should be a smooth and stress-free affair.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything or have any questions, be sure to call me at 850-217-4530 or send me an e-mail.

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