The average price of a Maryland house is $308,041, but this can fluctuate greatly depending on the neighborhood, type of home, and your time of purchase.
Buying a house in Maryland can be a rewarding experience if you do it right.
So, if you are renting in the state or are relocating from out-of-state, follow this guide to make the buying process easier.
Determine Your Budget
Your first steps to buying a house always include the financial parts. You have to determine how much you can afford. This includes the down payment, monthly mortgage, and the expenses of owning a house.
Your down payment and mortgage will be decided based on your financial standing with your bank and your credit score. Plus, the more you pay upfront the lesser your mortgage rate will be.
Owning a house also includes paying for utilities, repairs and maintenance, and insurance. These are things that you might not think about when renting.
Get Your Mortgage Pre-approved
One of the most important steps of buying a home is getting your mortgage pre-approved. This will determine how much the bank will approve for your new home. So, it will set your price range.
Sellers will not take you seriously as a buyer if you don’t have a pre-approved mortgage. So, don’t start house hunting before getting approved.
To get a pre-approval you will need to choose a lender, fill out a loan application, and submit your financial profile. A profile will consist of salary information, tax returns, and bank statements.
You should get a response after a few days to see how much money the bank will approve for a house.
Find a Realtor
When buying a home in Maryland, it is essential to find a realtor to help you with the process. Luckily, the seller pays for the fees associated with a realtor because it helps them find a buyer and close the deal without any issues.
A realtor will help you with your house search, assist with the paperwork, negotiate the price and conditions of the contract, and finalize the deal.
They are experts in the housing market so they can let you know the best time to buy and inform you of new developments.
Do Some Research
While a realtor can do a lot of the work for you, it is important to also be knowledgable. Read up on house buying for dummies to understand the whole process.
Read online about the housing market in Maryland to see if it is a buyer’s or seller’s market. The season will also affect your price. In the fall and winter, homes are less likely to sell so there is no competition.
Make a plan to save a lot of money and avoid any mishaps. This is the biggest decision of your life so it should take time and a lot of patience.
Start your house hunt online so that you can browse a lot of houses at once. This is a great way to find out which type of home, neighborhood, and features you are attracted to.
It is easy to sort by price range and focus on your favorite areas of Maryland. Save your list of online homes to visit in person. You can also show your list to your realtor to get an expert’s opinion.
Choose a Neighborhood
Your online search can show you new neighborhoods or ones that you are familiar with. Choosing your neighborhood is a big decision as it will determine your surroundings.
If you have kids or will in the future then you need to look at the district’s schools. Consider places for recreation, shopping, and access to highways for traveling.
Do you plan on changing jobs? This is a major factor if you need to commute to your old job or need to find a house near your new one.
Also, look at the types of homes in the area. Do you want to live in the suburbs of Maryland where houses will be larger and include yards? Or do you prefer the convenience of city life where you can walk to shops and restaurants?
Make a Must-have List
The inside of your house is just as important as the outside. What features are necessary for you to be comfortable?
Make a list of these items so that you do not waste time looking at homes without these features. For example, eliminate homes without a garage, a basement, or an open floorplan.
Place an Offer
Once you find your dream home, it is time to buy. How to buy a house in Maryland? You place an offer based on the asking price and by the recommendation of the realtor.
You will also need to decide on your earnest money to reserve your offer. This makes you appear as a serious buyer. You will also submit an offer letter with your conditions and your pre-approved mortgage.
Hire a Home Inspector
When the seller accepts your offer then you should hire a home inspector. While this is not mandatory in Maryland, it will safeguard you against faults in the home that you can’t see by yourself.
If major issues are found then your realtor can negotiate to either have the seller fix them or drop the price so you can fix them.
Close on your New House
The final step is to close the deal on your house. Your realtor will submit the final closing paperwork to the seller’s realtor.
It will take 30-45 days for the whole process to be completed. After this waiting period, your realtor will hand over the keys to your new home.
What’s Next After Buying a House in Maryland
It is time to enjoy your new home and neighbor after buying a house in Maryland. Celebrate by buying some new furniture and decorative pieces. Then explore the area by grabbing some steamed crabs at a nearby restaurant.
Start your home search by contacting us today.