Information for Buyers

KIKO Real Estate experts understand that buying a home is an exciting time - whether you need a bigger home for a growing family; are downsizing into a smaller home with less maintenance; or are relocating to Ohio for a new job. 

KIKO Real Estate agents are trained experts in their field. We pride ourselves on quality customer service, first-hand industry education and more sold homes than the local competition.

Let's begin the home buying process so that you can understand how easy and hassle-free KIKO Real Estate agents make it for you, our valued client.

Choose a link from the list below, or follow them step-by step to learn more:

#1 Getting Ready To Buy

Preparing to buy a home can be an exciting time, but also creates a lot of questions. Fortunately, a KIKO Real Estate agent can provide expert advice to help you find the right home. Ask yourself these questions:

  • What am I looking for in a new home?
  • Do I have enough money to purchase a new home?
  • How does my credit look?

You may want to make a list or brainstorm about the features and amenities that you find most appealing in a new home.

#2 Finding a Realtor

Before you choose a real estate agent, it is important to do your homework on the real estate companies in your area. Search the Internet for local real estate companies and meet with agents to discuss your options. 

Here are some typical questions you can ask a real estate agent:

  • How many years of experience do you have in this industry and in my community? 
  • What professional certifications do you hold (ex. Certified Residential Specialist - CRS)?
  • What services will you provide for me as my agent?
  • How will you represent me as a buyer?
  • Can you provide all the information that I need about homes in the area that fit into my price range?
  • What is the fee for your services? 
  • Can you explain the paperwork that I will need to sign?
  • What is my contracted timeframe for using you as my agent?

#3 Starting the Loan Process

As a buyer, it's important to establish financing before you make any serious home offer. The "pre-approval" process allows lenders to take a look at your finances and credit history in order to make a general assumption about your loan amount.

The pre-approval process is when a lender looks at all of your finances and determines the amount of money you could afford for a mortgage.

In order to get pre-approved for a loan, you need to contact a lender. Your KIKO Real Estate agent can help you find a lender that you feel comfortable with, and that offers programs best-suited to your needs.

#4 Starting Your Search

Now it is time to start the exciting search for homes! You can narrow down your search by asking yourself the following questions:

  • Where do I want to live?
  • What is the neighborhood like? 
  • Would I be moving into a good school district?
  • Are there any zoning restrictions?
  • How far is this home from my job?
  • What is my price range?
  • How many bedrooms and bathrooms do I want?
  • What style of house am I attracted to?
  • What amenities do I desire (ex. pool, fenced-in yard, etc.)?
  • Does this home have potential to increase in value?
  • Is there room to expand if I would like to build an addition?

Searching for a home is easier than ever thanks to the Internet. Check out our newest featured properties.

#5 Finding Your New Home

Beginning the search for your new home can be a great feeling. Communicate your goals to your KIKO Real Estate expert and make a list of the features and benefits that are most important in your pursuit of finding a home. These could be:

  • Location
  • Affordability
  • Size
  • Style
  • Design
  • Amenities

#6 Making an Offer on a Home

Your KIKO Real Estate agent will show you homes that match your ideal criteria. Once you find a home, make a list of your likes and dislikes about the property. 

There are three options when making an offer on a home:

  1. Accept the seller's asking price and have your agent write up the contract
  2. Reject the seller's asking price and have your agent make a different offer, or
  3. Agree to different terms and have your agent write an offer

This is all a part of the negotiation process.

#7 Financing

Do your homework about loans to save both time and money. There are thousands of loans to choose from, but it is important to keep in mind several key factors that will help you along the way:

  • How much can I afford?
  • How much money should I put down?
  • How is my credit?
  • Is this my first home?

Receiving a loan requires completion of a loan application and specific financial documents including pay stubs, rental checks and/or tax returns. You can receive a loan from: commercial banks, credit unions, mortgage bankers, mortgage brokers, savings and loan associations, mutual savings banks and insurance companies.

#8 Insurance

Insuring your home is like making an investment in your future. You work hard to have a home; homeowners insurance protects you and your family in the event of an emergency. 

Types of insurance include: 

  • Title Insurance - protects you in the event that the title on your property has a lien, unpaid taxes, or other legalities that would make it invalid.
  • Homeowner's Insurance - protects your home from fire, theft and other liable coverage.
  • Flood Insurance - protects your home from flood damage.
  • Home Warranty - a policy that can cover unexpected repairs, such as appliances, heating, air conditioning, plumbing, and electrical systems.

#9 Closing Procedures

Real estate closings - also called settlement or escrow - is an ever-changing process. That's what it's important to work with a reputable real estate brokerage.

With increased technology, most closings are completely automated and both parties do not have to be present at the same time to sign.

Closings usually take about 30 days to complete. This mainly depends on the buyer's financing availability, successful home inspection completion, and various lender conditions (ex. title search, title insurance, termite inspections, surveys and appraisals).

The closing process is the transfer of the property from the seller to the buyer. KIKO Real Estate has a full service closing department to coordinate this process. 

The buyer will receive the keys to the home or the deed to the land, while the seller receives payment for the property. The amount the seller receives is based upon the amount that is still owed on the mortgage, any outstanding fees or taxes, and any additional closing costs. All legal papers are filed with the local record office. It's important for both the buyer and seller to make sure the paperwork they are signing reflects the agreement of the original sale.

#10 Settling In

You have unpacked your boxes, arranged your furniture, and feel complete with your moving task. What's next? There is always an adjustment period when you move. Here is a list of a few things that may help:

  • Tour the neighborhood and visit some new places around the community.
  • E-mail old friends and neighbors to let them know about your new home and community.
  • Start a list about what you like about:
    • Home
    • School
    • Neighborhood
    • Community
    • Church
    • Friends
    • Teachers

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