Home Buying Process | Cindy Petty Realtor

Home Buying Process

Pre-Qualification: The beginning process of your home purchase begins with qualifying for the loan. Meet with a mortgage broker and find out how much you can afford to pay for a home. I have contacts for mortgage brokers so please inquire.

  • Pre-Approval: While knowing how much you can afford is the first step, sellers will be much more receptive to potential buyers who have been pre-approved. You will have a greatly improved negotiating position when you are pre-approved. Sellers are more apt to negotiate with someone who already has a mortgage approval in hand. You will also avoid being disappointed when going after homes that are out of your price range. With Pre-Approval, the buyer actually applies for a mortgage and receives a commitment in writing from a lender. This way, assuming the home you’re interested in is at or under the amount you are pre-qualified for, the seller knows immediately that you are a serious buyer for that property. Costs for pre-approval are generally nominal and lenders will usually permit you to pay them when you close your loan.



  • HUD Form 1003 Application competed in its entirety.
  • If applicable, Current mortgage, taxes & insurance information on all owned properties
  • We need to verify that all taxes and insurance is paid on all properties
  • We need to verify that all taxes and insurance is paid on all properties
  • If applicable, Current rental information including landlord’s name, address, and phone number.
  • Valid credit card information for payment of Appraisal
  • If applicable for a Veterans Administration Loan: Form DD-214
  • Legible copy of valid driver’s licenses and social security cards for all borrowers.
  • If applicable, Copy of Divorce Decree. May not be required but best to have on file if needed.
  • If applicable, Copy Bankruptcy Papers and copy of release
  • Name of Home Insurance Agent and their contact information.


  • Copy of the most recent 2 year period: W-2’s and/or 1099’s for all borrowers.
  • Signed copies of filed Tax Returns for the past 2 years all schedules all pages.
  • If self-employed, 2 years Business Tax Returns all schedules all pages. (K’1’s etc)
  • Most recent 30 day period: Paycheck Stubs (YTD P&L statement if self-employed).
  • If applicable, Awards letter, Statement of benefits for pensions, annuities, disability and/or Social Security, etc.


  • Most recent 3-Month consecutive statements for all checking accounts, savings accounts, IRA’s and stock accounts. Must include ALL pages even if some are intentionally left blank or pre-printed.
  • On all property owned, current value, payment, amount for taxes & insurance. If you own multiple homes, you must prove that taxes and insurance are paid on the properties. (Page 3 of application)


  • Will be taken from Credit Report (no need to supply)
  • Documentation of Alimony paid or Child support received. Must show continuance of 24 months.


  • Letter of Explanation of any derogatory credit items (late payments) in the last 24 months (See Credit report for any late payments, collections or derogatory statements). Please be brief and specific. Prefer to have one year of no late payments.
  • Letter of Explanation for any credit inquiries in the last 2 months. (See Credit report)
  • Letter stating that no new debt has been incurred since time of application.

The Buying Process

If you see a "For Sale" sign or an ad in the newspaper or online that interests you, I have access to all the data. So contact me for all the details:

  • The listing price
  • The description
  • The special features
  • The financing terms

I will arrange an appointment to show you the property at your convenience. Since already familiar with your housing and financial needs, so why go through the process again with someone else? I can save you time and take the hassle out of house hunting, and it won't cost you a penny more!

    • Representation by a Professional: As your real estate agent, I am the one working for you, the buyer, not the seller.
    • List of Needs & Wants: Make 2 lists. The first should include items you must have (i.e., the number of bedrooms you need for the size of your family, a one-story house if accessibility is a factor, etc.). The second list is your wishes, things you would like to have (pool, den, etc.) but that are not absolutely necessary. Realistically for first-time buyers, you probably will not get everything on your wish list, but it will keep you on track for what you are looking for.
    • Focus & Organization: In a convenient location, keep handy the items that will assist you in maximizing your home search efforts. Such items may include:
      1. One or more detailed maps with your areas of interest highlighted.
      2. A file of the properties that your agent has shown to you, along with ads you have cut out from the newspaper.
      3. Paper and pen, for taking notes as you search.
      4. Instant or video camera to help refresh your memory on individual properties, especially if you are attending a series of showings.
      5. Location: Look at a potential property as if you are the seller. Would a prospective buyer find it attractive based on school district, crime rate, proximity to positive (shopping, parks, freeway access) and negative (abandoned properties, garbage dump, source of noise) features of the area?
    • Visualize the house empty & with your decor: Are the rooms laid out to fit your needs? Is there enough light?
    • Be Objective: Instead of thinking with your heart when you find a home, think with your head. Does this home really meet your needs? There are many houses on the market, so don’t make a hurried decision that you may regret later.
    • Be Thorough: A few extra dollars well spent now may save you big expenses in the long run. Don’t forget such essentials as:
      1. Include inspection & mortgage contingencies in your written offer.
      2. Have the property inspected by a professional inspector.
      3. Request a second walk-through to take place within 24 hours of closing.
      4. You want to check to see that no changes have been made that were not agreed on (i.e., a nice chandelier that you assumed came with the sale having been replaced by a cheap ceiling light).

All the above may seem rather overwhelming. That is why having a professional represent you and keep track of all the details for you is highly recommended. Please email me or call me directly to discuss any of these matters in further detail.