Buying or selling a home on the Outer Banks? Elan Real Estate Sales can help.

For many people, purchasing a home or an investment property can be stressful. However, with a bit of planning ahead of time, it's not that complex. So they understand exactly what to expect, we like to furnish buyers with a road map of the whole deal. These are our nine steps to purchasing a home. If you have any questions about any of this information or if you're prepared to get started, you can contact Carolyn at 252-562-2485 or e-mail

Step 1 – Get ready to purchase
There are plenty of things you need to contemplate prior to beginning your home search. When you start your search, you'll probably want to create a check list of must-haves, get an idea of what neighborhoods, and start planning your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is no more than a third of your monthly income is a good guideline to follow.

Step 2 – Contact a real estate agent on the Outer Banks 

This is where Elan Real Estate Sales can help. We can book a time to get together so we can talk about your real estate needs and get an idea of your upcoming plans. We'll talk about neighborhoods, the mortgage and housing industries, and any other economic factors that may affect your buying decision today or in the future.

In addition, we will assist you in getting started on your loan. There are some great mortgage professionals in our area, and we work with a lot of them, so you'll be in great hands. They can assist you with deciding which type of loan is best for you and help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Begin your home search
After our first meeting, we will begin looking for homes on the market that best suit you.  Getting a sneak peek of many of the houses and eliminate the bad ones, and then we'll schedule appointments to view the houses when it's most convenient for you.

When we view homes, we will identify good features and negative ones. And ask you to point out what things you like and dislike. It's common for buyers to amend their wish list as we view houses and some features become more important than others. If that happens, we will go back through all the listings once more and trim it down to the home of your choice.

Step 4 – Get a grasp of the housing market
Our knowledge of the Outer Banks market is an imperative element in your home search. We are acquainted with all the neighborhoods and can let you know which neighborhoods are "hot" and warrant prompt action and others that are "cold" and allow for careful analysis.

As we view homes, we will make sure to communicate if the seller's asking price has room for negotiation or if we believe the home is "priced to sell."  My knowledge of the market will keep you a step ahead throughout the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find the home you've been waiting for
We are sure we'll find you your dream house on the Outer Banks. When that happens, we will carefully create your purchase offer. The offer will be made to suit your needs and the home. In North Carolina we have Due Diligence which allows time for acquiring financing, finishing the inspection, and a clean title.

When we send in your offer, you'll probably want to present "earnest money." This is a cash deposit given to the seller to secure the offer to buy the property. The amount is typically applied to the closing costs. If the seller accepts the offer, we should close within 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows necessary time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
Some contracts don't close on the first offer. It's widely common to receive a counter offer. But don't let this alarm you. We'll consider whether or not to take the counter offer, submit our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and go on.

The state of the market will play a big part in how aggressively we negotiate the contract. In addition, we'll work within your financing budget. So at the end of the day, we'll assemble a contract that is best for you.

Step 7 – Get your loan

After we sign the final sales contract, you'll start working with your lender to close the loan. If you're already pre-approved, this won't take much time at all. However, you'll need to stay in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll handle all the property information your mortgage lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) of closing costs from your mortgage lender within three days of accepting your loan application. The estimate is based on the loan amount. RESPA requirements dictate that it has to involve all closing costs and be within a close range of accuracy, and we will review the estimate and let you know if everything looks permissible.

Then we'll close on your home. This will occur at an attorney's office and is often a smooth and comfortable event.

Step 9 – Move in

Congratulations! It's time to move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything, be sure to call me at 252-491-8787 or e-mail me at carolyn@elanvacations.

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