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Step by Step Process of Buying a Home

December 24, 2020

Buying or building a new home can be daunting. From paperwork to final inspections there are many steps to take before the first moving box is unpacked. But by purchasing a home through Inspired Homes, you have a partner that can guide you through all of the steps to buying a house.


Steps to Homeownership

Through the Inspired Homeowner Experience, we will create a step-by-step plan with you so you can be sure of a seamless transition into homeownership. In this article, we will guide you through the paperwork and selection processes for buying and building an Inspired Home. 


Loan Qualification

Before you decide on a home, you will want to get pre-qualified for a home loan. This is an important step as you prepare to find the home that will fit your budget and your life. Gather the following paperwork and meet with a lender to get pre-qualified.

Your lender will want to see:

  • Pay Stubs – You will need to provide at minimum one 30 days of paystubs, (60 days is better). This shows the lender that you have a stable income and will be able to pay your mortgage each month. 


  • Employer Contact Information - Your paystubs will usually count as proof of employment, but some lenders require a letter or some other document from your employer to confirm your hire date and employment status.


  • Tax Documents – Your lender will also require at least two years of tax returns and W-2’s to further support your ability to make your loan payments over the life of the loan – usually 30 years. 


  • Bank Statements – Lenders will also want 30-60 days of transaction history.


  • Business Documents – If you are self-employed, the lender will want to see your signed tax returns as well as profit and loss statements.


  • Debt Information – The qualification of your loan is calculated by your debt-to-income ratio. Your lender will need information on any outstanding loans (car payments, mortgages, credit card debt, etc.)  to see how your monthly income is affected.


  • Residential History – To further support your ability to make a loan payment, you will need to provide two years of home addresses and contact information for any landlords.


  • Additional Income – This includes social security benefits, disability, pension, dividends or bonuses, etc. You are not required to disclose any child support or alimony payments, just whatever is applicable to your loan and debt-to-income ratio.


  • Assets – Your lender will ask for statements showing values of any CDs, IRAs, stocks, bonds, other securities and any money being used for the down payment.


  • Earnest Money and Source – Once you make an offer on the property and you will need to provide earnest money. This is a deposit held in an escrow fund that serves as proof of your intent to purchase the home. You will also need to provide proof of where the money came from. A PDF showing your bank history or a letter from someone who gave you the money for the down payment may also be necessary.

After the paperwork is turned in and you have been prequalified, contact Inspired Homes for exceptional service as we guide you through our building and buying process. 


Finding Home

We have beautiful pre-built homes available in many locations. These quality homes are built with the same quality and passion you would have if you were to build your dream home. The documentation needed for the loan and for the closing processes are largely the same and many are move-in ready. This is the perfect solution if you need a new home fast.

If you choose to buy land and build a custom home, we will be with you every step of the way. You will first decide on where you want to live. Inspired Homes has housing in six communities:


Design Consultation

After you’ve chosen where you want to live, it’s time to decide what you want to live in. The first thing we will do is meet with you to decide on a floor plan. Inspired Homes currently has nine plans to choose from:

Westbrook

Sonoma

Rutherford

Monterey

Fairfield

Inglenook

Cardinale

Calistoga

Opus


                                                        

Next, we will discuss your options for the interior of the house. Our Design Studio is your one-stop shop to every customizable element you can think of. After your home is purchased and permits are final, we will invite you to our studio to choose the features and functionality you want in your home.

Some of those features include:

  • Exterior and interior finishes
  • Lighting
  • Cabinetry
  • Flooring and trim
  • Countertops and backsplashes
  • Fixtures

Our experts have created designs for key elements of homes while adhering to functionality and budget constraints. 

Standard options for design selections include:

  • Pine trim
  • Luxury vinyl plank flooring
  • Granite countertops
  • Subway tile backsplashes
  • Up to 8-foot-tall kitchen cabinets

Whatever your desire, our team will work with you to make it happen. We will help you design counters with a bar, choose the handles on the cupboards, select fixtures and features for bathrooms and closets, even the how quietly you want your drawers to open.


Pre-Construction Meeting

Before our staff even puts a shovel in the ground, the Inspired Homes project manager and the community manager will invite you to a pre-construction meeting. The project manager and community manager are your partners through the entire Inspired Homebuyers Experience.

At this meeting, we will review and confirm your plan selections and timelines.


Inspections

Inspired Homes take quality seriously and each site has a project manager and community manager to ensure things are running smoothly. Official inspections will be done as progress on your house is made.

  1. Foundation Quality Inspection: Inspectors will check elevations, look for cracks, damaged walls, floors, and other issues.
  2. Frame Inspection: Inspectors check the home’s structure including the roof, walls, attic or crawl spaces, and determine load bearing and retaining walls and proper framing has been set in place.
  3. Mechanical Inspection: Inspectors will examine plumbing, electrical, and HVAC installations. These inspections verify that proper wiring is connected, ensure duct work is sending air to the right places, and that plumbing pipes are hooked up correctly.

After inspections are complete, you will have a Pre-Drywall Orientation which gives you the first chance to really envision what the house will look like. You’ll be able to walk the floor plan, see the rooms, and we will explain how all of the electrical and plumbing will flow.

Once your walk-through is complete, there are two final inspections that will occur:

  1. Trim and Drywall Inspection: Inspectors check for correct use of fasteners like screws and nails and ensure none are missing or loose, crooked or incorrect electrical outlets, and correctly staggered joints to ensure walls and doors are aligned appropriately.
  2. Quality Assurance Inspection: Your project manager will perform a final inspection and then a representative from Inspired Homes will perform an additional inspection to ensure your home is ready for closing.

In these inspections, other information on things like electrical wiring issues, framing, foundation slabs, footings, firestop material, pier pads, retaining walls, studs and more. The nice thing about these inspections is that reports usually include photos and details about the home that you probably didn’t know!


New Home Orientation

When your home is finally complete, we will help you learn all about your new home with our orientation. This is your first chance to see how all of the elements tie together and see the features you selected brought to life. Your project or warranty manager will take you on a tour of your entire house, answer any questions you have and provide any information you need.

Closing

The closing process commences after the home is complete, this is where ownership of the home transfers from the seller to the buyer. This can be a stressful part of the transaction process since money is changing hands, paperwork is being finalized, and escrow funds are disbursed. To get the closing process completed, you will need: 

Escrow Officer – Also known as a settlement or closing agent, they will coordinate document signing and purchase agreement terms have been met. 

Homeowners Insurance – This is required by lenders and you will need to bring your documentation to the closing.

Title Insurance – This protection is vital in the event that someone makes a claim on the property in the future. Technically this is optional but having this insurance can prevent you from losing your home and investment in it if the title was ever changed because of a valid claim.

Closing Disclosure Review – About three days prior to your closing, you will receive a closing disclosure in the mail which will itemize closing costs and specific information about the loan. It’s important to review these as any errors need to be caught and corrected prior to closing day.

Final Walk-Through – Primarily for pre-owned homes, it is important to do a final walk-through about 24 hours before closing. This ensures there are no surprises such as smashed windows, the seller has moved out, and any work that was to be done or set up to be done by the seller as agreed to in the loan was completed.

Documents – Your agent will likely send you a list of all the documents you need, but most require at least the following:

  • Homeowner’s Insurance Policy
  • Photo Identification
  • 10-year Address History
  • Cashier’s Check for Closing Costs and Down Payment (unless these were paid already)

Once all the documents are signed and payments are made you will finally receive the keys to your new home!

Warranty

While we are confident everything inside and outside the home Is in perfect working order on your move in day, we know things happen unexpectedly. When you build or buy with Inspired Homes, you will receive a 1-year workmanship warranty from 2-10 Front Line Warranty Service Program®.

This warranty protects the homeowner from costs resulting from workmanship and materials used in the construction of your home. This protection covers costs of repair or replacement of systems and appliances including parts and labor. 

Also included in this warranty coverage is: 

  • Two-year distribution systems warranty
  • 10-year structural warranty
  • Separate appliance warranties

There are a lot of steps to buying a house, but with an experienced and trustworthy partner like Inspired Homes, you can rest easy knowing you will find the right home that works for you or build the home of your dreams.

The layout of the home is just what I wanted. The kitchen has a lot of cabinet space, an area for a large dining table, and a fireplace that turns on with the flip of a switch and quickly heats the room.

Janet M. | Kessler Ridge at New Longview

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