The House Purchasing Process
The first step in the house purchasing process is to always get your finance pre-approved as this gives you assurance that finance is available and a specific price range to look within. A pre-approval generally lasts for 60-180 days, costs nothing, and can be easily renewed.
There are 3 main ways to make an offer on a property, these are:
1. Offer and Negotiation
This is the most common option. A written offer is made on a sale and purchase agreement (normally through the Real Estate Agent or with your Lawyer). The buyer accepts your offer or amends it (counters it) and sends it back to you. As the purchaser, you will either agree or counter their amendments. This process continues until you agree on a price (or don’t).
The vendor usually sets a reserve price (the minimum amount they will accept). This figure is kept secret until it has been passed at which time the auctioneer will announce that “the reserve price has been met”. If this figure is not obtained the house will be ‘passed in’ (it doesn’t sell). In this situation the vendor can opt to continue negotiating in private with the top bidder. Be careful with auctions as offers are unconditional so make sure you do your homework first and have all your due diligence completed. A deposit (generally 10%) is required to be provided on the fall of the hammer.
3. Tender or Deadline Sale
In a tender you place your best offer in writing to the vendor who receives all offers on a set date and then chooses the most favourable. The vendor may not choose any tender made and pass the property in or negotiate with the highest offer. You can place conditions on your offer but be aware, the more conditions, the less likely your offer will succeed. Remember, unconditional is unconditional and you are legally bound to buy the property.
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Which do you insure first - the chicken or the egg?
If you were asked to list types of insurances no doubt you would roll off house, car, contents, health and life insurance. Most of you will have cover to protect the first three and will happily explain to your ever-inquisitive kids what these policies do for you and how they work.