Exactly what is the process to buy a Sequim home? For buyers who live outside the Sequim area, this is a relevant question. I work through all these steps carefully with each of my clients as a buyer’s agent, but I realized that this might be helpful to many retirees who are thinking about buying a Sequim home. In this article I will spell out the exact process for buyers, but if you have questions about the buying process or any of these steps, please don’t hesitate to email or call me.
Buying a Sequim Home
The Sequim Home Market
The Sequim real estate market and the local real estate issues are not the same as other markets around the country, and so buying a Sequim home will involve knowing the unique issues buyers face, and the contractual and due diligence processes involved from making an offer all the way to the closing table. Here is the home buying process in Sequim and Port Angeles:
- Search the MLS online, filter through the homes and save your favorites so you’ll have a list to look at when you arrive. I recommend SequimHomesForSale.com and you can get help on my video on how to search for your Sequim Home (see in the right margin).
- Hire a buyer’s agent who has experience to represent you well, and communicate with your agent by email and telephone before you arrive so you will be scheduled to look at your selected homes.
- When you identify your ideal home, you will sit down with your agent and talk about the specific offer you want to make.
- It is critical, and don’t miss this step, that your buyer’s agent knows how to negotiate to save you tens of thousands of dollars. This is not a garage sale–this is the largest investment of your life. Be absolutely certain your agent knows how to negotiate. Discuss that until you are certain.
- The first contingency you will want included in the purchase of your Sequim home is a home inspection. That will cost you about $400, but it is well worth getting an independent inspection of the entire home. If there is anything wrong, you want to know so you can address it with the seller.
- The second contingency in the form of an addendum will be a septic inspection, if this Sequim home has a private septic system. In Sequim it is typical that the seller will hire a septic inspector at the seller’s expense ($150) to find out if the septic system has repair items and whether it needs to be pumped.
- The third contingency and addendum will be a well inspection, if there is a private well. This will involve hiring a well company at your expense ($150) to do a flow test and to send a water sample in to a Seattle lab for a quality test ($65) for bacteria and nitrates.
- The fourth contingency will be in the Financing Addendum, and if you are getting a loan, this is a standard contingency.
- As part of this process, there may be issues that come up during each of these inspections, and it is absolutely critical that your buyer’s agent knows how to professionally handle each issue in ways that will serve your best interests and not simply kill the transaction.
- Also as part of each step, it is also vitally important that your agent knows how to draft unambiguous language that the seller cannot drive a truck through.
- Your agent also must be a good “transaction coordinator,” because there are literally dozens of steps during this process from making an offer to closing that someone must supervise, and this is why I always appoint myself as the transaction coordinator and adult supervisor to communicate with everyone so that we know everything will be done on time and properly.
- The big job you will have as a buyer is to coordinate all the paperwork with your lender so that your loan gets approved in a timely manner.
- Throughout this entire process, you and your agent should be communicating regularly to address all issues along the way.
Sequim Home Due Diligence
Here’s something I’ve learned in 37 years in the real estate business. No two transactions are the same. You would think they would be. It would seem logical that buying and selling a home would be the same process, and that if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. But that would not be true, and it constantly amazes me how each transaction has it’s own unique issues that come up. There is no simple template for each buyer, and while I’ve defined the process, there are a thousand variables that could and do regularly come up.
Now you know what the process is when you get ready to buy your Sequim home.
Last Updated on June 17, 2019 by Chuck Marunde
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