When you decide to buy a home, you’re not in it alone. A number of people will help you on your journey to becoming a homeowner. Get to know who you’ll work with one-on-one and who works behind the scenes.
A few key roles in the home buying process:
Real estate agent — Guides you through the home buying process from start to finish. Finds properties that meet your needs and wants, negotiates prices and makes sure deals go through.
• Can provide you with information about comparable homes that have sold in the area.
• Can provide you with information about the home you are purchasing. For example, how long it has been on the market.
Mortgage banker — Secures a loan for you from the bank after collecting financial information to help determine the type and size of a home loan you qualify for. Helps you choose the right mortgage that fits your needs.
• Can alert you in the future when new opportunities arise that could potentially improve your financial situation.
Loan processor — Reviews all your documentation to ensure it is accurate for submission to underwriting.
• Works with your mortgage banker.
• Will contact credit companies, employer, and appraiser of your new home.
Underwriter — Reviews your loan application and will either approve, suspend, or deny your mortgage application by looking at your income, debt, credit history, savings and debt-to-income ratio.
• Assesses risk for both you and your lender.
• Aims to make sure that you’re able to afford the mortgage you’re applying for.
Home inspector — Examines the house thoroughly for non-functioning systems, damages and repairs that may be needed.
• Helps you know what you’re buying and what maintenance issues may arise.
• Gives you peace of mind that you’re getting a good value.
• Limits the number of surprises you find after moving in.
• Helps you learn the basics of your home and what systems will need to be replaced in the future.
This quick overview of the key roles involved in the home buying process just touches the surface. For more information on who you’ll be working with along the way, see our more in depth videos about each person.
RHONDA: It’s so critical that you have somebody on your team, or in your team that can explain these things to you and make it layman’s terms, make it simple for you.
FIELD: I guide people through the home buying process, starting from what you need to do in order to prepare. Weeding out the things that you like and you don’t like, finding that perfect home that you can afford.
JONATHAN: Once we get an idea of what their budget is, we sit down and kind of explain the documentation that we are going to collect in regards to debt-to-income ratio, credit score, why that’s important, kind of go through the different loan products that we offer, so government loans, convention loans, pros and cons of those different products.
CURT: Your loan is also going to be handed off to a processor. So the processor along with the mortgage banker really are the two people that you’re going to work with through the whole process.
CATRICE: We go through all of the documentation you provide at the initial application, such as your income, your assets, documentation, just to basically verify that everything has been obtained up front.
MICHAEL: Then all that documentation is going to come to me, and I’m going to analyze your credit history, your income history, all your banking accounts; and then based off of all that, we’re going to be able to decide if we’re going to give you a loan.
RICH: We will do an inspection of the house either prior to or just after the contract is executed. And we will take the buyer through the house to make sure that every facet of the house is fixed; is in good shape, is working properly, is safe. And we’ll inspect everything from the foundation right up to the roof.