8. Sign the Purchase and Sale agreement
Once the sellers accept your offer, you will sign the purchase and sales agreement. This is also when you need to put up a larger earnest money deposit (around 5% of home sale price).
Since the closing timeline is typically specified in your contract, you should now start securing the loan by talking to your loan officer. Also, hire an attorney to guide you through the process. The lender or your real estate agent can refer you to someone they have worked with in the past which will streamline the process.
In Massachusetts, a mortgage lender will hire their own licensed real estate appraiser to appraise the house. Appraisals are important because if your house is appraised below the offer price, your bank loan will not cover the full price of the home. If you waived the appraisal contingency in your offer, this means you will have to pay a larger down payment. Otherwise, you will lose the upfront deposit if you rescind your offer.
As a buyer, you will also hire a home inspector to do the inspection due diligence at this stage.
If both the house inspection looks good and the mortgage is approved, the homebuyer will do a final walkthrough of the house to ensure everything looks in place and signs the legal paperwork with the help of the attorney.
Gathering large sum of down payment money from your bank (checking or saving) and transferring it to the escrow account takes time. Mortgage wire transfers are usually fast and takes around 24 hours. You can also go to your bank and get a Cashier’s check (or a certified check).
The appraisal process usually takes 7-10 days but can be slower.
Time is of the essence, and you do not want to jeopardize your earnest deposit by missing financing closing time or miss the time window for inspection.