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Tim Stoll of Keller Williams Realty
(214) 868-2959

Home Buyers Guide

first-time-homebuyers

‚ÄčAdvice and Opinions from a Local Dallas Real Estate Agent

Whether this is your first big purchase, or your family is moving to a new location or looking for more space, buying a Dallas home has its share of ups and downs. It's perfectly normal to feel anxious about whether or not you've found the right property. Here are some things you can do to make yourself feel more secure with your decision.

Do The Math

You've probably already done this, but it's okay to go over it a number of times to be sure. Factor in your household income and all the bills you expect to pay every month. Add everything up. It sounds like a stressful activity, but when you look at the numbers and realize that buying a home is actually doable, it can be a liberating feeling. When you know for sure you can make it as a homeowner without getting underwater, you will feel more confident.

Meet The Neighbors

If you haven't had the chance to knock on a couple of doors yet, you should spend some time saying hello to people in the neighborhood. The more you can get to talking with families that are just like yours, the more you will be able to picture yourself as a member of the community. If you have kids, find out if there are other kids the same age nearby. That will help to ease their anxiety about moving as well.

Ask Your Agent

Don't feel like you are being overly cautious if you ask your local Dallas real estate agent your lingering questions. Make sure you're getting a good price for the area, and make sure you know about any issues with the condition of the property. You should be able to trust that they're excited for your decision, not just for making the sale.

Familiarize Yourself With The Neighborhood


Take a drive and figure out which stores you're nearest to, the route you can take to get to work, and which other amenities you might take advantage of. Dallas first time home buyers often underestimate how important living in a safe Dallas neighborhood with plenty of accessible businesses can be. The more you can imagine yourself living at your new address, the better you will feel.

Remember, never sign the papers on a new home unless you feel one hundred percent secure in your buying decision. If you need more answers, pick up the phone and call a real estate agent you can trust and who can walk you through every step of the process.


Five Absolute Truths About the Home Buying Process That You Will Need to Come to Terms With

Buying a home in Dallas is one of the most exciting times that an individual will undertake in life. However, a property purchase is not without its challenges, and these can cause frustration. In this article we'll share five potential setbacks that first time home buyers will need to understand and come to terms with to make a successful purchase.

Homeowner's Insurance is Necessary

Most lenders will require insurance before financing is approved. To fulfill these requirements, the policy should be for at least one year and proof that the policy has been paid for must be presented. Purchasing the policy is something that must be done before closing can take place, so if you're sure that this is the home for you, don't delay.

Some Dallas Home Sellers Are Firm, No Matter What

In an ideal situation, the buyer and the seller come to a mutual agreement very easily. However, in most cases negotiation of some type is likely to be a part of the process. As with most negotiations, to reach success both sides will need to compromise.

Probate Properties Have Special Terms

When the original homeowner has died, there are certain considerations to keep in mind that do not typically apply to other types of property. One is the fact that there is a special process that must be completed before the property can be sold, even though the heirs may advertise the property as being for sale ahead of time. Another factor to keep in mind is that a recently probated property may have been uninhabited for some time and will be sold 'as is'.

Loan Offers May Not Be Set in Stone


A common pitfall for many buyers is the assumption that home financing will be approved without issue. Unexpected circumstances may arise that cause a mortgage loan to be denied, which can cause an unprepared buyer numerous issues. Many sellers, in anticipation of such problems, have a contingency requirement.

Expect Caution from Sellers

If a seller treats your offer with caution or trepidation, don't take it personally. Many homeowners have been burned during previous sales, and you have no idea what the seller has been through with potential buyers this time around. If someone is exercising caution, there's likely a good reason for it.

In closing, remember that the best way to purchase a home is through a local Dallas real estate agent. When you're ready to jump into the property market, contact a trusted local agent and they'll be ready to assist.

Understanding the 'Option Period' and What This Term Means for You as a Home Buyer

When the sale of real estate takes place, a certain amount of time might be allotted after a contract is created but before the transaction is finalized during which the buyer may decide not to follow through with the deal set forth in the contract. This 'option period' allows buyers to have a property inspected and its value ascertained without the risk of losing the property to another buyer.

What Happens When The Option Period Takes Place

Typically, a buyer must pay an option fee in order to be able to enjoy the luxury of an option period. During the option period, property inspections are typically carried out on the property in question so that the buyer can be sure that the proposed offer is appropriate. The nonrefundable option fee that the buyer pays the seller so that the seller agrees not to follow through on a transaction with another prospective buyer compensates the seller for the time during which the property is off of the market.

Differences Between Various States And Provinces

It is not always possible for a buyer to have an option period during which he or she can finalize plans to make a purchase on a property. Regulations and procedures between different states and provinces vary significantly.

It is worth noting that here in the state of Texas is an area with a real estate market that is particularly well known for granting option periods. In Texas, the option period usually lasts between seven and 14 days and serves as a period of time during which inspections are carried out; however, other states and Canadian provinces have different ways of dealing with option periods and scheduling inspections.


Associated Expenses

The particular laws applicable where a sale takes place will often dictate how much a buyer needs to pay to the seller in option fee charges. In the state of Texas, the option fee is usually no greater than 1 percent of the sale price of the home. The option fee is normally applied to the transaction at escrow closing in the event that the buyer decides to proceed with the sale.

Buyers who decide not to purchase a property after the option period has already begun will usually be responsible for paying the option fee to compensate the buyer for lost time. However, the buyer will be under no further contractual obligations.


If you have questions on the processes and regulations involved in a real estate transaction, contact an experienced real estate agent to learn more.