Buying or selling a home in Orlando?

Buying a home can be stressful for a lot of people. However, with a bit of planning ahead of time, it's not that hard. I like to furnish buyers with a road map of the entire deal so they'll know exactly what to expect. Below are my nine steps to buying a home.

Should you have questions about any of this information or if you're ready to get started, simply contact me here or e-mail me at

Step 1 – Get ready to buy a home
There are many things you'll want to contemplate before you start searching for a home. It's likely that you'll want to make an index of features you need, get an idea of what neighborhoods and school districts you want to live in, and begin planning your budget. Ensuring your mortgage payment is no more than 1/3 of your monthly income is a good guideline to follow.

Step 2 – Talk to a real estate agent in Orlando
That's where I come in. I'd be happy to plan a time to meet with you and speak with you regarding why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your upcoming plans. We'll talk about the mortgage and housing industries, other economic factors that may potentially affect your purchase today or in the future, as well as neighborhoods and schools in the Orlando area.

I can also assist you in getting started on your loan. There are some great mortgage professionals in Orlando, and I work with a lot of them, so you'll be in great hands. They'll assist you in figuring out which kind of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Begin your home search
After our first meeting, I'll start finding houses on the market that best suit you. I'll get a sneak peek of most of the homes and eliminate the bad ones, and then we'll set up appointments to tour the houses when it's most convenient for you.

As we tour the houses, I'll point out good features, as well as bad ones. I'll also ask you to talk about things you like and don't like. Frequently, buyers update their list of must-haves as we view homes and some features become far more crucial than others. If such is the case, I'll search all the listings another time and trim it down to the house you've been wishing for.

Step 4 – Get a feel for the housing market
An agent's awareness of the Orlando home market is an imperative element in your house search. And I can assure you I'm mindful of all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I can alert you to which neighborhoods are "hot" and warrant immediate action and the ones that are "cold" and allow for thoughtful examination.

As we tour houses, I'll let you know if the asking price has room for bargaining or if I believe the home is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be on guard and make sure you ask plenty of questions. Every REALTOR® in Orlando will tell you they understand the market. If it doesn't seem like they know everything, contact me at 407-325-1223 or e-mail me at, and I'd be more than happy to answer any questions you have. My market knowledge will keep you a step above the rest throughout the entire process.

Step 5 – Find the home you've been waiting for
I know we'll find your dream house in the Orlando area, and when we do, I'll precisely develop your purchase offer. The offer will be tailored keeping your needs in mind. Whenever necessary, I never forget to make contracts contingent upon items like your ability to secure financing and the results of the home inspection.

When we turn in your purchase offer, you'll likely need to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit submitted to the seller to secure the offer to purchase the property, and it's often applied to the closing costs. If the seller accepts the offer, we should close on the home about 30 to 60 days afterward. This allows necessary time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate the deal
Unfortunately most deals don't close on the initial offer – it's pretty common to receive a counter offer. But don't let this discourage you. We'll consider whether or not to agree to the counter offer, propose our own counter offer, or decline the seller's offer and move on.

Market circumstances will play a part in how aggressively we negotiate the contract. We'll also work within your financing budget. And when it's all said and done, we'll compose a contract that works well for you.

Step 7 – Get a loan
Once the deal is finished, you'll begin working with your mortgage lender to close the loan. This shouldn't take much time at all if you've been pre-approved, but you should to stay in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll look after all the property information your mortgage lender needs to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
Your lender will give you a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) of your closing costs within three days of getting your loan application. You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) outlining closing costs from your lender within three days of receiving your loan application. This estimate is formed from the loan amount. RESPA requirements mandate that it has to contain all closing costs and fall within a precise range of accuracy, and I'll examine the estimate and let you know if everything looks okay.

Then we'll close on your home. This will likely take place at a title company or escrow office and will most often be a smooth and stress-free event.

Step 9 – Move in
Congratulations! Now you can move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you need anything or have any questions, just call me at 407-325-1223 or send me an e-mail.

David Woolford

631 S. Orlando Avenue #200
Winter Park, FL 32789