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What Happens After The Offer Is Accepted?

Did you know that finding a property is only half the battle when buying a house? In this video, I’m going to walk you through the stages of what happens after you get your offer accepted. We’ll look at everything from paperwork and earnest money to getting your keys so you know exactly what to expect.

Knowing Your Numbers

When you’re buying a house, finding your property is only half the battle. The real work starts after you get an accepted contract on a property; just because it’s accepted doesn’t mean you own the home. It just means you have more work to do. 

There are a few things that need to happen to get you to the closing table—especially on the loan side. First, if you’ve already had an accepted offer, you should have already been pre-approved by a lender. If you haven’t, I’m not sure how you got the offer accepted. With your pre-approval, you should already know your numbers. 

This includes your loan amount, your interest rate, your total closing costs, and how much of a downpayment you’re going to need. These numbers are important when you’re getting pre-qualified. If you don’t have these amounts worked out, you might want to consider who you’re working with as a lender. 

Starting The Process

What many buyers don’t realize is the amount of work that goes on behind the scenes, especially when it comes to lending. You cannot officially start the lending process until you have an offer accepted on a property. As long as you’ve been pre-approved and nothing’s changed with your employment or credit score, the information should be relatively the same. 

Additionally, your lender cannot start the process without having an officially accepted offer. Most transactions will take up to 30 days to close, though that’s subject to what things you have negotiated in the contract. After your contract has been accepted, the very first thing you’re going to do is start your paperwork.

Earnest Money

Once your offer has been accepted, you’re going to most likely be giving the sellers a 1% earnest money check. This earnest money is given in good faith and binds the contract. Once it’s been accepted, the seller will have the confidence to take the home off the market. 

Meanwhile, you’ll finalize your loan approval and order appraisal, title work, and other necessary inspections to get you to the closing table. Remember, while your earnest money is given to the seller in good faith, it’s also part of your down payment. You’re just giving a little bit of it upfront to make the seller feel good about your intentions in purchasing their home. 

In exchange, the seller will give you an executed contract—which is what we need as the lender to get your mortgage process started. Your lender cannot start the process without an executed contract; it’s very important regardless of who you are. Even if you’re the President of the United States, we have to have an executed contract.

Loan Disclosures And Processing

The first document you’ll receive from your lender will be their disclosures. These disclosures include all the legal information you need to know when purchasing a home. It’ll also have your initial closing cost disclosure, estimates of what you can expect to bring to the closing table, and explanations of all the details of the loan. As long as your information hasn’t changed, it should be the same information from when you were originally approved earlier in the process. 

Once the loan disclosures have been signed and completed, your loan is going to go through processing. This is the most important part of week two. It’s confirmation of title work, appraisal, and any additional items needed for the underwriter. 

Appraisals And Underwriting

The next thing we’re going to do is order the appraisal and title work. The reason we order an appraisal is 1) we want to make sure you’re purchasing a home that is at the value that you’re purchasing it at, and 2) the lender also wants to protect themselves. They don’t want to loan money to a consumer on a house that’s worth less than what it actually appraises for. 

The reason we order title work is to ensure that the sellers who are selling the home own the property. We also want to ensure that the buyer is purchasing a home that has no liens, no variances, has a survey and a plot, and everything is done legally. It’s very similar to buying a car. When you pay a vehicle off or you’re purchasing one, you want to ensure that you have a clean title. It’s the same thing with purchasing a home. 

The next step is that the file is going to be submitted to the underwriter. The underwriter is going to verify the income, assets, and all other information to approve the loan. The original loan approval mustn’t change. If you’ve gotten a new job, quit your job, bought a new vehicle, or something in your financial situation has changed, you have to let your lender know as it will affect your approval. 

Once the appraisal and title work are complete—and they usually take the longest—the underwriter will be required to review those upon arrival and before issuing a final clear to close. 

Clear To Close

As we move into week three and your loan is officially approved, we will receive what’s known as the clear to close.  The clear to close is the official, final loan approval that gives us the ability to schedule your loan closing. Once we receive it, we’re going to send the final loan disclosures to the title company. 

Your mortgage lender will have a closing department that will send that information out. This will give you the final closing disclosures; it will show you your final closing cost, monthly payment, interest rate, and anything else the lender originally agreed to earlier in the process. 

Once you’re clear to close, a closing date will be set. Closing is when you sign all the paperwork and meet with a closing agent and/or attorney. Once all that paperwork is signed and agreeable, you get the keys to the house. 

Getting Your Dream Home

I hope this helped you understand the overall process of buying a home after getting your offer accepted. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me or my team at 903-331-0892. You need to make sure that you get all of your questions answered when buying a house, and we’re more than happy to help. 

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Kenneth Travis Loan Officer

Kenneth Travis

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