Are you purchasing your new home in Albany? Steve Thomas Real Estate, LLC can help.

Buying a home can be stressful for a lot of people, but it's not too complicated with a little up-front planning. So they'll understand exactly what to expect, I'll give buyers a road map of the whole deal. Below are my nine steps to buying a home. When you're ready to get started, you can contact me here or e-mail me at . I'm happy to answer questions you have regarding this information.

Step 1 – Prepare to purchase a home
There are plenty of things you need to do prior to beginning your home search. When you begin your search, you'll want to assemble an index of must-haves, get an idea of what neighborhoods you'd like to live in, and start planning around your budget. Keeping your mortgage payment less than or close to 30 percent of your net monthly income is a good principle to go by.

Step 2 – Get in touch with a real estate agent
This is where Steve Thomas Real Estate, LLC comes in. I'd be happy to arrange a time to get together with you and communicate with you about your real estate needs and get an idea of your future plans. We'll talk about the mortgage industry, other economic factors that could potentially affect your buying decision today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and schools in the Albany area.

I can also help you get started on your loan. I work with some of Albany's finest mortgage professionals, so you'll be in great hands. They will help you decide which type of loan is best for you, as well as help you get qualified.

Step 3 – Begin your search
After our initial meeting, I'll start looking for available homes on the market that meet your needs. I'll get a sneak peek of most of the homes and exclude the bad ones, and then we'll schedule appointments to tour the homes whenever it's most convenient for you.

As we view the homes, I'll point out positive features and negative ones. I'll even ask you what things you like and dislike. Generally, buyers update their wish list as we view homes and some features become far more important than others. If that's the situation, I'll go back through all the listings one more time and narrow it down to the house of your dreams.

Step 4 – Comprehend the housing market
My understanding of the Albany market is a necessary aspect in your house search. I am acquainted with all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I can let you know which districts are "hot" and require immediate action and the ones that are "cool" and allow for thoughtful consideration.

When we view houses, I'll be sure to tell you when the seller's asking price has room for negotiation and also when I trust the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be careful and make sure you ask a lot of questions, as every real estate agent will claim to comprehend the home market. If things don't add up, just call me at (518) 426-7703 or e-mail me at , and I'll be glad to answer any questions you have. My understanding of the market will keep you a step above the rest throughout the entire deal.

Step 5 – Find your dream house
I know we'll find your dream house in Albany. When we do, I'll carefully develop your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be made to fit your needs and the home. We'll include a lot of contingencies, such as getting financing, finishing the home inspection, and a clean title.

Upon presenting your purchase offer, you'll want to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit submitted to a seller to secure the offer to buy the property and is usually put towards the cost of closing. If your offer is accepted by the seller, we should close on the property within 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows enough time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
Most contracts don't close on the first offer – it's widely common to receive a counter offer. Don't let it discourage you. We'll discuss whether or not to accept the counter offer, submit our own counter offer, or reject the seller's offer and move on.

The state of the market will play a large role in how aggressively we negotiate the contract. We'll also work within your financing limits. And when it's all said and done, we'll compose a deal that is best for you.

Step 7 – Obtain your loan
Once we sign the final sales contract, you'll start working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. It won't be a long process at all if you're pre-approved, but you'll want to stay in close contact with your lender. And I'll care for all the property information your lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Loan Estimate (LE) of your closing costs from your lender within three days of getting your application. This estimate is based on the loan amount. RESPA requirements require that it has to involve all closing costs and be within a precise range of accuracy, and I'll go over the estimate and let you know if it all looks adequate.

Then we'll close on your house. This will likely occur at a title company or escrow office and will likely be a smooth and relaxing occurrence.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! It's time to move into your new house. Enjoy it. And if you need anything or have any questions, just contact me at (518) 426-7703 or e-mail me at .