Darrell Backen Digital Marketing: Eight steps to buying your home in Vancouver, Real Estate, Homes For Sale...Receive Your Free Market Snapshot Report

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Eight steps to buying your home in Vancouver, Real Estate, Homes For Sale...Receive Your Free Market Snapshot Report



Eight steps to buying your home

 Vancouver Real Estate, Homes For Sale...Receive Your Free Market Snapshot Report

1. Decide to buy.

Although there are many good reasons for you to buy a home, wealth building ranks among the top of the list. We call home ownership the best “accidental investment” most people ever make. But, we believe when it is done right, home ownership becomes an “intentional investment” that lays the foundation for a life of financial security and personal choice. There are solid financial reasons to support your decision to buy a home, and, among these, equity buildup, value appreciation, and tax benefits stand out.

Base your decision to buy on facts, not fears.
  1. If you are paying rent, you very likely can afford to buy
  2. There is never a wrong time to buy the right home. All you need to do in the short run is find a good buy and make sure you have the financial ability to hold it for the long run
  3. The lack of a substantial down payment doesn’t prevent you from making your first home purchase
  4. A less-than-perfect credit score won’t necessarily stop you from buying a home
  5. The best way to get closer to buying your ultimate dream home is to buy your first home now
  6. Buying a home doesn’t have to be complicated – there are many professionals who will help you along the way

2. Hire your agent.

The typical real estate transaction involves at least two dozen separate individuals – insurance assessors, mortgage brokers and underwriters, inspectors, appraisers, escrow officers, buyer’s agents, seller’s agents, bankers, title researchers, and a number of other individuals whose actions and decisions have to be orchestrated in order to perform in harmony and get a home sale closed. It is the responsibility of your real estate agent to expertly coordinate all the professionals involved in your home purchase and to act as the advocate for you and your interests throughout.

Seven main roles of your real estate agent

A Buyer’s Real Estate Agent:
  1. Educates you about your market.
  2. Analyzes your wants and needs.
  3. Guides you to homes that fit your criteria.
  4. Coordinates the work of other needed professionals.
  5. Negotiates on your behalf.
  6. Checks and double-checks paperwork and deadlines.
  7. Solves any problems that may arise.

Eight important questions to ask your agent

Qualifications are important. However, finding a solid, professional agent means getting beyond the resume, and into what makes an agent effective. Use the following questions as your starting point in hiring your licensed, professional real estate agent:
  1. Why did you become a real estate agent?
  2. Why should I work with you?
  3. What do you do better than other real estate agents?
  4. What process will you use to help me find the right home for my particular wants and needs?
  5. What are the most common things that go wrong in a transaction and how would you handle them?
  6. What are some mistakes that you think people make when buying their first home?
  7. What other professionals do you suggest we work with and what are their credentials?
  8. Can you provide me with references or testimonials from past clients?

3. Secure financing.

While you may find the thought of home ownership thrilling, the thought of taking on a mortgage may be downright chilling. Many first-time buyers start out confused about the process or nervous about making such a large financial commitment.

From start to finish, you will follow a six-step, easy-to-understand process to securing the financing for your first home.

Six steps to Financing a Home
  1. Choose a loan officer (or mortgage specialist).
  2. Make a loan application and get preapproved.
  3. Determine what you want to pay and select a loan option.
  4. Submit to the lender an accepted purchase offer contract.
  5. Get an appraisal and title commitment.
  6. Obtain funding at closing.

4. Find your home.

You may think that shopping for homes starts with jumping in the car and driving all over town. And it’s true that hopping in the car to go look is probably the most exciting part of the home-buying process. However, driving around is fun for only so long – if weeks go by without finding what you’re looking for, the fun can fade pretty fast. That’s why we say that looking for your home begins with carefully assessing your values, wants, and needs, both for the short and long terms.

Questions to ask yourself
  1. What do I want my home to be close to?
  2. How much space do I need and why?
  3. Which is more critical: location or size?
  4. Would I be interested in a fixer-upper?
  5. How important is home value appreciation?
  6. Is neighborhood stability and priority?
  7. Would I be interested in a condo?
  8. Would I be interested in new home construction?
  9. What features and amenities do I want? Which do I really need?

5. Make an offer.

When searching for your dream home, you were just that – a dreamer. Now that you’re writing an offer, you need to be a businessperson. You need to approach this process with a cool head and a realistic perspective o your market. The three basic components of an offer are price, terms, and contingencies (or “conditions” in Canada).

Price – the right price to offer must fairly reflect the true market value o fthe home you want to buy. Your agent’s market research will guide this decision.

Terms – the other financial and timing factors that will be included in the offer.

Terms fall under six basic categories in a real estate offer:
  1. Schedule – a schedule of events that has to happen before closing.
  2. Conveyances – the items that stay with the house when the sellers leave.
  3. Commission – the real estate commission or fee, for both the agent who works with the seller and the agents who works with the buyer.
  4. Closing costs – it’s standard for buyers to pay their closing costs, but if you want to roll the costs into the loan, you need to write that into the contract.
  5. Home warranty – this covers repairs or replacement of appliances and major systems. You may ask the seller to pay for this.
  6. Earnest money – this protects the sellers from the possibility of your unexpectedly pulling of the deal and makes a statement about the seriousness of your offer.

6. Perform due diligence.

Unlike most major purchases, once you buy a home, you can’t return it if something breaks or doesn’t quite work like it’s supposed to. That’s why home owner’s insurance and property inspections are so important.

A home owner’s insurance policy protects you in two ways:
  1. Against loss or damage to the property itself
  2. liability in case someone sustains an injury while on your property

The property inspection show expose the secret issues a home might hide so you know exactly what you’re getting into before you sign your closing papers.
  • Your major concern is structural damage.
  • Don’t sweat the small stuff. Things that are easily fixed can be overlooked.
  • If you have a big problem show up in your inspection report, you should bring in a specialist. If the worst-case scenario turns out to be true, you might want to walk away from the purchase.

7. Close.

The final stage of the home buying process is the lender’s confirmation of the home’s value and legal statue, and your continued credit-worthiness. This entails a survey, appraisal, title search, and a final check of your credit and finance. Your agent will keep you posted on how each if progressing, but your work is pretty much done.

You just have a few preclosing responsibilities:
  1. Stay in control of your finances.
  2. Return all phone calls and paperwork promptly.
  3. Communicate with your agent at least once a week.
  4. Several days before closing, confirm with your agent that all your documentation is in place and in order.
  5. Obtain certified funds for closing.
  6. Conduct a final walk-through.

On closing day, with the guidance of a settlement agent and your agent, you’ll sign documents that do the following:
  1. Finalize your mortgage.
  2. Pay the seller.
  3. Pay your closing costs.
  4. Transfer the title from the seller to you.
  5. Make arrangements to legally record the transaction as a public record.

As long as you have clear expectations and follow directions, closing should be a momentous conclusion to your home-searching process and commencement of your home-owning experience.

8. Protect your investment.

Throughout the course of your home-buying experience, you’ve probably spent a lot of time with your real estate agent and you’ve gotten to know each other fairly well. There’s no reason to throw all that trust and rapport out the window just because the deal has closed. In fact, your agent wants you to keep in touch.

Even after you close on your house, you agent can still help you:
  1. Handle your first tax return as a home owner.
  2. Find contractors to help with home maintenance or remodeling.
  3. Help your friends find homes.
  4. Keep track of your home’s current market value.

Attention to you home’s maintenance needs is essential to protecting the long-term value of your investment.

Home maintenance falls into two categories:
  1. Keeping it clean: Perform routine maintenance on your home’s systems, depending on their age and style.
  2. Keeping an eye on it: Watch for signs of leaks, damage, and wear. Fixing small problems early can save you big money later.

North Vancouver Real Estate, Homes For Sale...Receive Your Free Market Snapshot Report...
    The Latest Technology To Help In Your Search For Your New Home

Short of helping you buy or sell a property, the best service I can provide, especially in today’s shifting economic climate, is a monthly snapshot on your investment!

What are home values in your neighbourhood?

What’s happening to home values in your neighbourhood?

What have your neighbour’s homes sold for lately?

I have a new service to offer and I have set you up to receive a Market Snapshot that will arrive every 4 weeks via email.  If you
want, I can follow up with a phone call to explain the details of the Snapshot but in advance I want to point out the following.  The
map has several options; road, aerial and bird’s eye views!  
Check the bird’s eye view and see your backyard or your
neighbor’s backyard!
 Initially, you will see 10 listings identified by green (Active Listings) or red flags (Homes that have Sold).  
Hover your mouse over any of the listings and a pop up box with a picture of the home will appear.  Within the pop up is a link;
click to view details.

This will give you detailed information on that particular home such as the asking price, selling price, days on market, property
features and comments!

Underneath the map is a list of up to 100 active and sold listings,.  By clicking any of the homes on the list, you will notice that the
map expands beyond the initial 10 listings for a broader visual list of inventory.  Above the graphs on the right is a drop down list
that allows you to see inventory based on the last three months which is the default, the last thirty days or the last week!  Below
the drop down list are several statistical graphs showing; asking and sold prices, asking vs. sold prices, time on market, and
inventory stats.

The Snapshot shows homes that are similar in number of bedrooms and bathrooms to yours so not every home for sale or sold
will appear.   If for some reason a home of interest is not found, please utilize any of the contact me options found in the
Snapshot and I will be more than happy to get you the information!

As mentioned I will follow up to discuss further but wanted to provide some explanation in advance of my call, that said, please do
not hesitate to call me as well!


I am sure you will find the  Market Snapshot to be of value.  I have had tremendous response to this service so far!  Who doesn’t want to know how much
the neighbor is asking, or how much their house sold for?
Despite what the headlines may say, the values and level of activity are very different when you talk
about specific areas of interest.  The city as a whole may be identified on the evening news in such a way that is not necessarily true for your immediate neighborhood!

You may have noticed that the homes in the market Snapshot have some similarities to yours and some may not compare much at all?  Just like the Dow Jones stock
market snapshot as an example which is made up of a number of stocks from various sectors, the temperature of the market as a whole is displayed through a
consolidation of the various companies.  This is the same for the Snapshot I have provided to you. Trend data from a consolidation of surrounding homes formulates
the report.  It is interesting to know what homes of various styles, shapes and sizes are selling for and how long they take to sell compared to others?

If there is anything you need beyond what is found in the Market Snapshot, please do not hesitate to reach out!  If anyone you know would also like to receive a
Market Snapshot, just forward my signature at the bottom of this email and they can sign themselves up or pass on their information and I would be happy to set them
up as well.
Thank you for your continued support and referrals!

One of the aspects of the Market Snapshot I would like to point out is the Community and School information.  This comes on both the home owner and
buyer Snapshots but is most beneficial for buyers looking in areas of interest!  The community information allows you to see amenities from a 1-5 mile radius via a
drop down list.  
The community characteristics offered are; population, household stats, house ownership stats, transportation, income, employment, net worth,
cost of living and climate!   The school information allows you to compare schools from a radius between 1-10 miles, both public and private!  If there is an area of
interest to you locally in addition to your current home that you would like a Snapshot for, please let me know as I can provide multiple Snapshots to you.

Traditionally, Realtors have been great suppliers of recipes and notepads but in today’s shifting economic climate,
  the information found in the Market Snapshot is more relevant to what I do and what I can provide to you of real value!  

As mentioned before, please feel free to forward my email signature found at the bottom to anyone you think might also want an update on local real estate trends and they will be directed to sign up – likewise, I am happy to set them up as well.

Comment balloon 1 commentDarrell Backen • November 18 2009 04:09PM


Super detailed post.  One of the better ones I've seen.  Nice job and thanks for sharing!

Posted by Dr. John McMillen (Clovis Real Estate) about 11 years ago