Why Buy With Us?
What makes working with Sesame Realty different is that the process of searching & buying a home doesn't feel like work. We're committed to easing our clients through the process and negotiating the best terms at the best price for them. We are a patient, empathetic, caring & experienced real estate company that utilizes technology to enhance the experience increasing your competitive edge while maintaining the old fashioned personal touch throughout the process. When we say "We Open Doors For You! it shows our appreciation for the warm feeling of having someone greet you at the door and welcome you into their home. You are truly welcome at Sesame Realty,LLC! And did you know, buyers don’t pay us, sellers do!
What is the importance of getting pre-approved for a mortgage? How do you go about getting pre-approved?
The importance of getting pre-approved for a mortgage is the equivalent of choosing where to go on vacation based on your budget and multiply that by 250 times. Making plans for a trip without knowing what your budget ends up being hours wasted on the computer and being very sad faced, shoulder dropping disappointed. No beaches for you in the tropics this year (unless you already live in the tropics near a beach). Rather than spending time searching for homes before knowing what your budget is, it is far more rewarding and practical if you know your budget, choose your REALTOR®, and then search for homes. I write that, knowing that homes have been found the other way around and buyers have been fortunate enough to be able to afford the home....however, with something this expensive and life changing as a home...leaving the search to luck...eh, might be better when you're in search of the perfect pair of shoes.
The process of getting pre-approved is to ask recommendations from friends, family and a seasoned REALTOR®. You may be getting ready to make one of the biggest purchases of your life or you've already bought property a few times, either way recommendations are generally the best approach. Be careful of online promises of bargain interest rates as if its too good to be true, it most like isn't..true. The lender will need to pull your credit report and you can shop around for a mortgage lender, but don't let more than three companies pull your credit. It does impact your credit but in this case its worth it, but be sure not to apply for any other credit, like buying a car, large items like furniture, expensive trips, etc. Everything you share with your mortgage lender is confidential as they are licensed by the state. Initially, the lender will get a computerized opinion of your buying power based on your verbal representations of debt & income (pre-qualification is based on verbal representations), along with your credit score and then after you supply your documents to verify the the information you previously provided they'll provide you with a pre-approval which will assist your very qualified REALTOR® to start the search with you.
Escrow and Closing Costs
What is escrow? Are there any closing costs that buyers should be aware of? What is the process of purchasing a home?
While there's nothing glamorous or mysterious about the escrow or title company as it is a neutral third party that holds & disburses funds until the escrow closes or terminates, they are very important in the transaction process of buying or selling real estate. In some states, like NJ, real estate attorneys are used in lieu of escrow companies. They serve as reassurance to the parties and a kind of insurance as well, that the transfer of monies will be handled in a fair, legal & ethical manner being independent of either side. Monies cannot be disbursed from the escrow account without both sides being in agreement. Another function escrow/title companies serve is to do a detailed background check on the the title history of the property in question to ensure no surprises in ownership or liens appear later once the title changes hands.
The lender will review closing costs with buyers during their free consultation with them. Closing costs depend on the type of loan a buyer is using and oftentimes are rolled into the loan amount allowing buyers to finance them and pay them off over the life of the loan. When cash is tight, or interest rates are so low (like now, comparatively speaking), it may make more sense to a buyer to save their cash and finance the closing costs.
The process of purchasing a home depends on the individual situation of the buyer. If a home needs to be sold first, then the process changes to accommodate the buyer's need to coordinate the two. If the buyer doesn't have to sell anything first, the process is fairly straight forward with getting the pre-approval, interviewing agents for the best fit, working with the agent to find the right home, submitting the offer, doing due diligence to make sure the house
is sound and has a clean title, and then moving in...did I forget something? Part of what we do at Sesame Realty is a Buyer Consult which is 100% free and no obligation to use us, where we answer your questions and walk you through the process over a cup of coffee. We believe if buyers know what to expect, they can then focus on what they need to focus on, which is "Is that the right home for me?" Its like having a driver in a city you've never been to before, that knows the best routes to take and lets you tell them where you want to go, "To the coliseum, James!" No one but you knows which house will work best for your family, so we leave that decision to you. But, like a good driver, we know how to get you there in the most effective way and as we say, "We'll Open Doors For You!"
What is a home warranty? Is it worth purchasing? Do you provide a home warranty as a closing gift?
We at Sesame Realty, find real value in home warranties and we DO provide a American Home Shield Warranty as a closing gift. Nothing more stressful than having something break in your new home and unless it really is a "new" home, something is probably going to break within the first year. To know your out of pocket expense will be limited to the cost of your service call, is a tremendous peace of mind to most homeowners.
Are you relocating to this area? Looking for more information to help you find the right city and neighborhood for your family?
Our relocation guide includes the most up-to-date and vital information for people looking to move to our area.
We are your personalized relocation guide, in the flesh. Its not about reading how to relocate here, its about having someone on the ground, who's been through the relocation process and will personally guide you through it. If we get overwhelmed, maybe we'll write a guidebook but right now, we like the personal touch. (If you click on the button, it won't work.)
We specialize in first-time homebuyers as everyone has to have a "first time" sometime, we hope. There are many financing programs that lenders can guide you through, to determine the best fit for you and we'll work with with the terms of the program keeping your escrow on track to close.
I am Senior Real Estate Certified, which means we know how to work with seniors and the challenges that they may face in buying or selling their homes. My Mom, 91, lives with us in Makakilo and my very first job was working in a nursing home. Hawaii is very kind to our seniors, however, housing can be truly a challenge with the cost of real estate here.
At this time we don't have access to a moving van but hope to in the future. We'll let you know when that happens.