First Time Home-buyer? Let's Talk about Money!

Real Estate Agent with Tallapoosa, Bremen, Waco, Buchanan, Temple, Carrollton Licensed in GA & AL

Cara Marcelle Mancuso has some grest tips for first time home-buyers.  If you are ready to buy a home, the first question you need to think about is how much money do I need.  Cara's answers to the questions below will help any first tme buyer be ready for anything, and hopefully get to closing with a smile...

Original content by Cara Marcelle Mancuso BR564219000

First Time Home-buyer?  Let's Talk About Money!

Here's some main questions some of my first time homebuyers have asked me in the past and a brief answer to follow.  I'm not going to address short sale, reo or foreclosed-upon properties, or HUD home questions here because my blog posting will get too long! Please follow the links for more information on those types of transactions.


First Time Home-buyer Questions:

How much money do I need?

There are many factors involved, the first being the type of loan you are obtaining financing for in your Arizona State Real Estate Transaction.  I will have asked you to fill out a financing questionnaire with your mortgage officer prior to viewing homes so that you know your purchase power, and the down payment you will be required to make.

After the offer is made, earnest money is addressed.  The earnest money proves to the seller that you are "earnest" about your offer and serious about wanting the house.  EM can typically run any where from $500 to $2000 depending upon purchase price, or perhaps a percentage required by the seller based on list price.

If your offer is accepted, you will then run into escrow costs during the inspection period including the Inspection, the Appraisal, and the Termite Inspection.  Inspections can run $300 and up, and are based on the size and age of the home, Appraisals $375 and up, and Termite - well the company I use a lot charges $26!  Again, these costs are only approximate, based on my current clients of June 2011.

Lastly, are Closing costs:  Typically run about 3% of the price of the home - you will get an estimate from your lender, as well as the HUD-1 from Title and Escrow, prior to signing your closing docs.

Now, with an Arizona contract, buyers may ask for seller contributions to some of these costs, and we can discuss this in a personal conversation when home buying.


Is the Seller's Asking Price Fair?  How Low Can I Go?

Every real estate agent is different, but I will tell you up front right now - I am all about fair representation of my client, however, and will provide you with as much information as I can to discover whether or not the list price is fair, and what concessions you might be able to negotiate.  I do this with comparables, history, neighborhood, condition of property and repairs needed, length of time a listing has been for sale, and sometimes a phone call to the seller's agent!  It's good to know with the help of your lender before hand, if a home in a certain price range is within your power to purchase. Let's not try to buy a home you cannot afford by offering a ridiculously low price.

Am I going to get any surprises at closing?

Hopefully not.  The lender, title agent, and agent all work together behind the scenes with the buyer providing as much information as needed in order to close a transaction.  You will be provided a settlement statement before signing papers that will inform you of the amount needed in certified funds or a cashier's check at signing.

And one more thing - signing is not closing.  Closing is when the deed records at the City Clerk downtown and we are permitted to hand over the keys to the new owner.  You will not get the keys at signing, which is typically completed three days before recordation, so that all of the parties can be paid, records documented and transferred, etc.


If I can assist you in your home buying or selling in Marana, Tucson, Oro Valley, or Vail, please don't hesitate to call me!  Email at

Cara Marcelle Mancuso, Tierra Antigua Realty, (520)909-2988   

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Comments (1)

Cara Marcelle Mancuso
Long Realty - Dove Mountain, Marana AZ - Tucson, AZ
Call a Marana neighbor, I'm THERE! LONG REALTY

I love those closing smiles!  Thanks for the re-blog.

Jul 19, 2011 08:08 AM

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