Tips for Buying a Home

Buying a home can be overwhelming, luckily there are people who can help guide you through the process. Below is a list of people that you will work with to help find your perfect home. If you are looking for real estate in the Hood River or Columbia Gorge Area and want some names of people who can help fulfill any of these positions, just let us know. As a real estate company we work with these key people every day.

Real Estate Agent
Your real estate agent will listen to your wants and needs and will help you find a home that is the best match for you. In addition to helping you find the right home, they will also advise you on the market value and provide you with information to help you determine your offer price. Once you find a house that you want to make an offer on your agent will help you in negotiations with price, repairs, and other details of the transaction. Your real estate agent will be there for you from beginning till end.
Loan Officer
Unless you have the savings to pay cash for the property, a loan officer is another crucial person involved in the home buying process. Before you start looking at homes it is recommended that you meet with a loan officer to see if you qualify or if there are any other kinks you may have to work out (like your credit score). Your loan officer will analyze your credit, income and assets. They help make sure you are looking at homes you can afford and when the time comes to put in an offer they can provide you with a pre-approval letter saying you do indeed qualify for a loan of that size. 
Insurance Agent
Once you have an accepted offer on a property you will want to talk your insurance agent (or ask for a recommendation from your loan officer or real estate agent) about a homeowner’s insurance policy. Lenders will require a policy to be in place before they will fund the loan.
Title & Escrow Officer
Title and escrow are commonly thought as one role, because normally one company handles both roles. A title and escrow company will be decided on in your offer. Once you have an accepted offer your real estate agent will open escrow. Your title officer will take care of all issues that have to do with title, for example the deed and title insurance policy, which the lender will require. The role of the escrow officer is to be a neutral 3rd party, they ensure everyone involved does what they agreed upon.
Home Inspector
It is strongly recommended when buying a home you have a home inspection. Normally a home inspection is done within the first 2 weeks of having an accepted offer. A home inspector will examine the property and look for structural problems, defects, and maintenance issues. They will thoroughly inspect the property and make sure you didn’t overlook any issues.
If you are obtaining a loan, an appraisal will need to be done. The appriasal will be ordered through your lender through a system that does NOT allow you to pick the appraiser. The appraiser will conduct an analysis of the property to determine the current value. The bank wants to make sure before loaning you the money that the property is at least worth the price you are paying for it. They base this analysis on recently sold homes in the area.