Buying or selling a home? Scott Benson can help.

With a little up-front planning, buying a home isn't very confusing, but the event intimidates many people. So you know exactly what to expect, I like to supply my buyers with an outline of the whole deal. Below are my nine steps to buying a home.

When you're ready to get started, simply contact me here or send me e-mail. I'm glad to answer any questions you have regarding this information.

Step 1 – Prepare to buy
There are many things you'll want to do before you start looking for a home. When you start your search, you'll want to create an outline of items you need, plan for what school districts and neighborhoods you want to live in, and start planning around your budget. A good rule of thumb to go by is that your mortgage payment should be less than or around 1/3 of your monthly income.

Step 2 – Speak with a real estate agent in McKinney
This is where I can help. I'd be more than happy to arrange a time to meet with you and speak with you about why you want to buy a home and get an idea of your plans for the future. We'll talk about everything from neighborhoods, schools in the McKinney area, the mortgage industry, to any other economic factors that could affect your purchase today or in the future.

In addition, I'll help you start the loan process.  At Scott Benson Realty  we work with some of McKinney's best mortgage professionals, so you're in great hands. They'll assist you in deciding which kind of loan is best for you and help you get approved.

Step 3 – Start house-hunting
Following our initial meeting, I'll begin looking for available homes on the market that suit your needs. I'll preview most of the homes and reject the duds, and then we'll schedule appointments to tour the homes when it's most convenient for you.

As we view homes, I'll identify positive features, as well as bad ones. And I'll ask you to talk about things you like and dislike. Most often, buyers amend their must-have list as we tour houses and some items become more necessary than others. If that's the case, I'll go back through all the listings again and trim it down to the home you've been dreaming about.

Step 4 – Know the market
An agent's knowledge of the McKinney home market is a leading aspect in your home search. And I assure you I'm informed of all the school districts and neighborhoods, and I can alert you to certain districts are "hot" and warrant prompt action and the ones that are "cool" and allow for more analysis.

When we view houses, I'll be sure to tell you if the seller's list price has room for negotiation or if I believe the house is "priced to sell." When working with an agent, be careful and be sure to ask lots of questions. Any real estate agent in McKinney will convince you they truly know the home market. If it appears they don't know everything, call me at 972-249-7219 or e-mail me at, and I'll be glad to answer your questions.
My market knowledge will help you stay a step ahead throughout the entire process.

Step 5 – Find the home of your dreams
I'm confident we'll find your dream home in McKinney or the surrounding areas. When that happens, I'll meticulously develop your real estate purchase offer. The offer will be tailored with your needs in mind, including several contingencies. A few examples are obtaining financing, carrying out the inspection, and a clean title.

Let Scott Benson Realty guide you through finding your dream home in McKinney When sending in your offer, you'll want to submit "earnest money." This is a cash deposit given to the seller to secure an offer to buy the property. The amount is typically applied to the cost of closing. If the seller accepts your offer, we should close about 30 to 60 days after. This allows necessary time for your mortgage financing.

Step 6 – Negotiate
A lot of deals don't close on the first offer. It's very common to receive a counter offer. But don't let this discourage you. We'll discuss whether or not to take the counter offer, present our own counter offer, or reject the seller's offer and move on.

How aggressively we negotiate the contract depends on the state of the market. In addition, we'll work within your financing constraints. And when it's all said and done, we'll compose a contract that is best for you.

Step 7 – Secure your loan
After we sign the final sales contract, you'll begin working with your lender to close the loan. This won't take very long at all if you've been pre-qualified, but you'll want to keep in close contact with your mortgage lender. And I'll manage all the property information your lender will need to close the loan.

Step 8 – Close the deal
You'll get a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) outlining closing costs from your lender within three days of accepting your application. The estimate depends on the loan amount, and RESPA requirements require that it has to contain all closing costs and be within a tight range of accuracy. I'll analyze the estimate and let you know if everything looks all right.

Then we'll close on your home. This will likely take place at a title company or escrow office and will probably be a smooth and relaxing occasion.

Step 9 – Move in
You made it! It's time to move into your new home. Enjoy it. And if you need anything, make sure you call me at 972-249-7219 or e-mail me at

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