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First-time homebuyers have many options to get into a home, including federally-backed loans and loans for homebuyers without the standard 20% minimum down payment. Your real estate agent will know who has the widest range of options and who’s the most knowledgeable in your state. Online mortgage companies may not be the best option, they may not know of local grants, regional loan programs or where the state is. (Many People are unaware the New Mexico is a USA state).
Your real estate agent will help you decide how much money you want to offer for the house with any conditions you want to ask for (i.e. the buyer pays for your closing costs). Your agent will present the offer to the seller’s agent; the seller will either accept your offer or issue a counter-offer. You can accept, or continue to go back and forth until you reach a deal or call it quits. If you reach an agreement, you’ll make a good-faith deposit and the process then transitions into escrow. Escrow is a short time (often about 30 days) where the seller takes the house off the market with the contractual expectation that you will buy the house – provided you don’t find any serious problems upon inspection. (For more on the escrow process, read 10 Hurdles to Closing on a New Home.)
Even if the home you plan to purchase appears to be flawless, there’s no substitute for having a trained professional inspect the property for the quality, safety and condition of your potential new home. If the home inspection reveals serious defects that the seller did not disclose, you’ll be able to rescind your offer and get your deposit back. Negotiating to have the seller make the repairs or discount the selling price are other options. (For tips on coming out ahead in any negotiation, read Getting What You Want.)
If you’re able to work out a deal with the seller, or if the inspection didn’t reveal any significant problems, you should be ready to close. Closing involves signing paperwork in a very short time period, while praying that nothing falls through at the last minute.