What To Expect

Buying a home involves several stages. Below is a list of the more common steps during a residential transaction.

Your situation may vary and it is best to contact your real estate professional for more information.

Common Steps for Buying a Home

  1. Initial Meeting
    • Select real estate agent.
    • Determine needs and wants.
    • Determine financial eligibility.
  2. Loan Qualification
    • Discuss finances.
    • Obtain mortgage or loan pre-qualification/approval.
  3. Find a Home
    • Select an affordable property that fits your needs.
    • Discuss offer with agent.
    • Buyer reviews contract with agent.
    • Agent presents offer to selling side.
  4. Present and Negotiate Offer
    • Buyer prepares “earnest money” deposit (typically, 1 to 3% of purchase price).
    • Seller accepts offer (Seller can accept your offer, counter your offer, or reject your offer).
  5. Contingency Period
    • Conduct Physical Inspection of property by a qualified inspector.
    • Approve seller’s Transfer Disclosure Statement.
  6. Open Escrow
    • Deposit “earnest money” into listing brokers trust account.
    • Buyers lender to order title work/commitment.
  7. Mortgage/Loan process continues.
  8. Loan and Title Processing
    • Approve title work/commitment.
    • Property appraisal ordered and completed.
    • Obtain loan approval from lender.
    • Closing appointment coordinated with the parties by TitleSmart.
  9. Obtain Homeowner’s Insurance
    • Select insurance company and coverage.
    • Insurance will be in effect at close of escrow.
  10. If applicable, obtain Home Warranty
  11. The Closing
    • Need wired funds or cashier’s check prior to or at closing.
    • Lender sends Loan funds to TitleSmart.
    • At the closing appointment, all escrow Documents are fully executed and funds are disbursed by TitleSmart.
    • Enjoy some awesome, fresh-baked cookies, Caribou coffee and get your celebratory photo taken on our “Red Carpet.”
    • Get your keys and move in!


Check out HomeClosing101.org
for more information on how to best be prepared for your home closing.