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10 Most Common Home Buyer Questions

Buying a new home is exciting and confusing. There are a lot of steps to

buying a home, and people have questions. These are the most common

questions home buyers have and the answers.

1. How do I get started? – The first step is to speak with a lender and

get a pre-approval. This will tell you, and potential sellers, how much you

can afford.

2. How long does it take to close on a home? – Typically, it takes

about 30-45 days once contracts are signed to complete the lending,

appraisal, and inspection processes; however, this can be shortened or

extended depending upon the needs of the buyer and seller.

3. What does my agent do? – A buyer’s agent will negotiate terms and

manage the closing process from start to finish.

4. How much do I pay for a buyer’s agent? – In most instances...nothing. In

California, it is customary for the seller to pay the commission fees for both


5. What credit score do I need to qualify? – A 620 FICO score or

higher is required for most home loan programs; however, if you have a

lower FICO score, it is important to talk to a lender as they can help

guide you on other options or provide counseling to improve your credit


6. How much money do I need for a down payment? – It varies. FHA

loans start as low as 3.5, VA loans do not require a down payment, and some

conventional loans require as little as 3%.

7. What other fees will I need to pay? – Closing costs and loan

origination fees will add another 2-3% to the costs.

8. What if I change my mind? – Your agent will work with you to build

in contingencies for condition, loan terms/approval, and other protections to

allow you time to evaluate the home during escrow.

9. When do I get the keys? – Unless you’ve negotiated extra time for the sellers to move, you’ll get the keys at the closing.

10.What’s the best advice for home buyers? – Trust the experts and ask lots of questions. Buying a new home is exciting. Reduce any anxiety by finding a good buyer’s agent who can help you make the best choice for your needs.

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