Buying Real Estate on Cape Cod or the South Coast
Whether you are buying your first home to live in year-round or buying a waterfront home to spend your vacations, these short summaries will help guide you through the process. Having a Kinlin Grover agent as your Buyers’ Representative will give you the peace of mind knowing you have someone in your corner who will represent your best interests. Looking at properties is only the beginning of the journey that will ultimately lead to you being handed a new set of keys to open up your new home! Your Kinlin Grover agent can help you navigate this journey.
- Choosing a community
- Getting ready to buy
- Mortgage and Pre-Approval
- Choosing a Kinlin Grover agent
- Choosing your new home
- How much to offer the Seller
- Making the offer
- The Purchase and Sale Agreement
- Closing and Settlement
- Additional Services
1. Choosing a Community
The towns of Cape Cod, and the small villages within them, each have their own unique character. Cape Cod has over 600 miles of coastline with pristine beaches and charming harbors. You will also find ponds, rivers, and streams – waterways of every kind. There are many water activities: fishing, sailing, whale watching, paddle-boarding, kayaking, just to name a few. In addition, there are activities for land-lubbers – arts, antiques, shopping, museums, equine, theater, and great restaurants. You can relax on one of the many beaches, golf at any number of courses, enjoy music at many venues. You can stay as busy as you wish to be, or not!
Cape Cod, with its relaxed lifestyle, is a great place to raise a family! Your Kinlin Grover agent has hands-on knowledge of the different communities, the local school systems, houses of worship and anything else you might need to choose your dream spot. In addition, your agent can advise you on current market trends by area.
Our website can be used to search for listings, and then with the help of your agent, you can start pinpointing which area suits your lifestyle and needs.
2. Getting Ready to Buy
You know you want to buy, but you have questions about the process. A common dilemma Buyers face if they have a home to sell is whether to close on their existing home first.
Your agent can help answer these questions and get you in touch with a trusted lender, who can assist you with mortgage pre-approval. If you need the equity in your current home before proceeding, your agent will stay in touch with you and will be there for you when you are ready.
In the meantime, your Kinlin Grover agent can offer you contacts for every possible service you may need. When the time is right, you may need inspectors, craftspeople, and, likely your first priority, a mortgage lender.
3. Mortgage and Pre-Approval
Most Buyers will want to finance their home, possibly even if they are capable of paying cash. Deciding on the financing is one of the most important steps and our agents can help you find the right mortgage lender.
There are many mortgage programs available, from FHA and VA loans up to jumbo loans. We have in house mortgage consultants who can talk to you and help you decide on the best program for you, based on your situation and your financial goals.
You will want to work with your agent and the mortgage consultant and get pre-approved. A pre-approval letter from a recognized lender is very important, allowing your team to negotiate from a position of strength. Sellers and their agents will want to know that you can secure the financing you will need to purchase the property. Furthermore, if you and another Buyer are competing for the same home, the Seller will more likely work with someone who has been pre-approved.
Being pre-approved benefits you as well. You will know the approximate monthly payments, the maximum amount you can borrow, your price range, and even estimated closing costs. You will then be able to move ahead with your home search with knowledge and confidence.
4. Choosing a Kinlin Grover Agent
Like most people, your home search may begin on-line. But as soon as you do make a decision to buy a home, it is best to select a sales professional as early in the process as possible, so that you can work together and streamline the process.
All of our sales agents are proud to be REALTORS, that is, members of the National Association of REALTORS. As REALTORS, Kinlin Grover agents must uphold the highest standards of professional conduct and adhere to a strict code of ethics. Kinlin Grover offers in-house training and encourages agents to obtain professional certifications.
Kinlin Grover Premier Service Guarantee:
Your Kinlin Grover sales associate will give you their personal commitment to provide you with quality customized service that meets your needs. They will strive to gain your full satisfaction with the service they provide. They will listen to your needs, establish expectations, make a commitment in writing, and then perform the service expected. Through the Premier Service program, every Kinlin Grover real estate client is asked to complete a survey at the end of a sale to evaluate the service they received. These surveys enable us to document and track a record of superior service that no other company can match.
In Massachusetts, there is a state law that requires real estate agents to disclose to all parties who they are representing. When you meet with a Kinlin Grover agent, they will explain “agency” to you. In short:
- All agents are obligated to deal with both Buyers and Sellers fairly and honestly.
- Sellers’ agents represent the Seller and are expected to negotiate the best price and terms for the Seller.
- Buyers’ agents represent the Buyer and are expected to negotiate the best price and terms for the Buyer.
- Designated Agency can occur when two agents work under the same Broker, one representing the Seller and the other the Buyer. Proper disclosure to all parties is required.
- Disclosed, Dual Agency can occur when a Seller’s agent finds and represents a Buyer for that Seller’s property. Proper disclosure to all parties and approval by all parties are required.
Exclusive Buyer Representation:
When you hire one of our sales associates as a Buyer’s agent to fully represent you, you will be asked to sign a Buyer’s Representation Agreement.
- Your agent will work exclusively on your behalf throughout the process, ensuring that your interests are fully represented.
- Your agent is legally and ethically obligated to work for you, assisting you in defining your goals and helping to formulate a plan to meet them.
- You can rely on your agent to know the communities in which they work and have comprehensive knowledge of the inventory of homes available.
5. Choosing Your New Home
Searching for your new home can be exciting as well as daunting when you consider all the options available. Regardless of how you find a property â€“ online, in a newspaper ad, by direct mail, during a chance drive-by, or at the recommendation of your Kinlin Grover agent â€“ you will want to see it in person and request in depth information about the property.
Today, someone who is in the market for a home is able to have the same expert and professional guidance as Sellers always have had, through Buyer Agency. When you hire a Kinlin Grover sales professional as your Buyer’s Agent, he or she will work on your behalf throughout the process, ensuring that your interests are represented. Offering your input and sharing your needs and wants confidentially with your Buyer’s Agent can help you better reach goals.
The percentage of home buyers who begin their search online goes up every year. Approximately 90% of buyers now report that they started looking via the internet. By searching the Kinlin Grover website you will be able to compile and analyze important data that will help you understand the market and make more informed choices.
Cape Cod and the South Shore are diverse markets comprised of many different towns and villages, all with unique characters, history and offerings. The Kinlin Grover website has been designed to empower you with a host of tools to start your search online and learn about the areas. Detailed searches can be performed, whereby you can scan every property listed, not just those listed with our company. You will be able to save your search, and, if you desire, receive notifications by email every time a home matches your criteria.
In addition to in-depth searches, you can watch our videos about the different areas of the Cape and its villages. You will be able to review our latest “Market Watch” and read up-to-date articles about real estate.
Your Kinlin Grover agent can assist you from the preliminary steps all the way to the closing table. Your agent’s knowledge and guidance can give you a tremendous advantage and peace of mind.
When a home becomes available that suits your needs, your agent can set up an appointment to view it. Nothing can compare to walking into a home, seeing and experiencing the space, architectural details, floor plan, and finishes. Giving clear and honest feedback to your agents about the homes you view together will help your agent narrow your search to find your dream home. Once that property is identified, you will be able to proceed with confidence that you are making the right decision on which home to purchase.
6. How Much to offer the Seller
By comparing properties currently for sale in the area as well as similar properties that have sold or are under contract to sell, your agent can determine a market value and get a general sense of how much to offer a Seller. There are many factors to consider, such as location, condition, market conditions at the time, and what the terms of each sale may have been. Your agent can guide you through this and help you decide what to offer.
The real estate market is dynamic and fluid; modulations are sometimes subtle, and at other times, dramatic. Shifting economic conditions, the ebb and flow of supply and demand, and the changing desires of consumers, can all impact the market and prices. Your Kinlin Grover agent will be able to advise you via their market analysis.
Your agent will also advise you on ways in which your offer will be one that the Seller may find attractive. There are many details that a Seller will be concerned with besides the price you offer, such as contingencies, your financial situation, and dates.
7. Making an Offer
Once you determine what is fair, reasonable, and most likely to succeed in being accepted, it is time to have your Kinlin Grover agent prepare an Offer to Purchase.
In Massachusetts, a 2-step process is used to secure a contract that goes to the closing table. The first step is the initial Offer to Purchase (or Contract to Purchase), and the second is the Purchase and Sale Agreement.
The Offer Strategy: The Offer will introduce your initial bid, requested terms, conditions and contingencies to the Seller and the Listing Agent. This is the springboard from which the Seller may negotiate if the Seller does not agree to all of your proposed terms. Naturally, it is important to present an offer that the Seller finds somewhat reasonable. Your agent can guide you through this crucial step based on a strategy that you and your agent have formed with the goal in mind of achieving an accepted offer to purchase the property.
The Deposit: The Deposit is the earnest money you include with your offer to show the Seller that you are acting in good faith and to bind the contract. Usually this is a minimal amount compared to the Down Payment, which is due in full at the signing of the Purchase and Sale Agreement as agreed in accepted Offer to Purchase.
The Contingencies: Often buyers add “contingencies” which can include a provision to secure financing and obtaining an acceptable home inspection. Your Kinlin Grover agent can also provide you a list of licensed, local home inspectors and arrange for a complete home inspection which can cover foundation to air quality and everything in between. Other contingencies may be applicable for a specific property. More reason to have your Kinlin Grover agent in your corner.
The Accepted Offer: Once you as a Buyer have negotiated and come to terms with the Seller, the Offer or Contract to Purchase, with all the acceptable price, terms, and conditions noted, is endorsed by all parties.
You now have an Accepted Offer and the initial deposit is placed in escrow, securing the property. Your Kinlin Grover agent, as an Expert Facilitator, will help you schedule, arrange, and fulfill your requirements under this agreement, toward the fulfillment and completion of the 2nd step, the Purchase and Sale Agreement.
8. The Purchase and Sale Agreement
The Purchase and Sale Agreement will be drafted and executed according to the terms of the Offer, but usually after some, if not all, of the contingencies are met. At that time, the balance of your full down payment will be due, and will be held in escrow until the property transfer or closing. In Massachusetts, a local real estate attorney is recommended to assist with the drafting of the Purchase and Sale Agreement and to represent you at the closing table. The Lender’s attorney will also review the Purchase and Sale Agreement and will occasionally also represent the Buyer.
9. The Closing and Settlement
Your Kinlin Grover agent will usually be present at the closing thus providing support from the beginning of your search up to the time you are new homeowners! The papers you will receive at settlement are extremely valuable, so hold on to them!
In the short-term they can help establish tax deductions for the year in which the property was purchased. In the future, such papers will be important for tax purposes when the property is sold, and in some cases, for calculating estate taxes.
Just before the closing
- Buyers should do a final walk through the property prior to the closing.
- It is understood that Sellers will leave home "broom clean" when moving out. This expression does not mean "spotless." “Broom clean” means the home is free of debris and is ready for new occupants.
- The charges for the home’s utilities such as water, sewage, gas, electric and oil service should be determined. You want utility bills to be paid in full by sellers as of closing.
- You also want services transferred to your name for billing. Usually such transfers can be done without turning off utilities. Your agent can provide contact numbers and related information.
For most people, their home is their largest single asset, so it makes sense to protect that asset. Make a photo or video record of the home and your possessions for insurance purposes and then keep the records in a safety deposit box. Your insurance provider can recommend what to photograph and how to secure the records. Enjoy!
10. Additional services:
Kinlin Grover understands that today’s buyer has a need for a full range of services beyond brokerage. We have partners who can assist you with mortgage services, title insurance, homeowner’s insurance, home warranties, and relocation. Please ask your Kinlin Grover agent about these so that your transaction will be seamless and efficient.