Congratulations on having an accepted contract on a house, but now what? Often contracts are accepted verbally by the seller’s agent first while signatures are gathered from the sellers. It can take 1 – 2 days for all parties to sign and return the contract so be patient. Until we have an executed contract (which means everything has been signed by both the sellers and the buyers) we do not have an enforceable contract. Therefore, it’s urgent that a signed contract be received by all parties asap.
Once a signed contract is received, several things need to happen:
1. The title search needs to be ordered within 7 days of the contract being signed. If I am your Realtor, I’ll take care of this for you. Usually you will not be in contact with the title company until the day of settlement. As your Realtor, I manage this process for you.
2. The contract needs to be sent to your mortgage lender (along with any addenda or changes during the contract period). Again, if I am your Realtor, I’ll take care of this. This lets your mortgage lender know that you’re under contract and starts the process for getting you approved for the mortgage (remember, right now you’re only pre-approved). Be sure to respond promptly to your mortgage lender. They will ask you to fill out a lot of paperwork. Some mortgage lenders joke it’s like getting a financial colonoscopy. Unfortunately, it’s not optional; it’s required and the quicker you can fill it out and get it back to them, the better.
3. You need to schedule the home inspection. Click here for my list of recommended home inspectors. This needs to be done asap.
4. You need to write and drop off the first earnest money check. Typically the earnest money check is made out to the seller’s agent’s brokerage and is either in the form of a personal check or a certified check (I’ll let you know which one you need). Usually it is dropped off at the seller’s agent’s office with 5 calendar days of contract acceptance. When you drop it off make sure you ask for a receipt. Hold on to the receipt and email a copy to both me and your lender.
5. After the above items have been done, I’ll email you every few days with an additional next step. Think of it as our friendly way of giving you homework to ensure a smooth transaction and to help you make sure everything gets done on time.
Questions? Call me at 717.963.00167 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.