Frequently Asked Questions

What is the mortgage pre-approval process?

The mortgage pre-approval process is relatively easy. A pre-approval involves you talking to a bank loan officer or mortgage broker. They will gather some information about your needs, your desired monthly payment and gather information about your current income. They will run a credit report, and based on all the information they gather, they will determine how much financing you qualify for and what interest rate that they can secure for you. This is a very important step in the home buying process. Sellers take a buyer’s offer much more seriously, and will be more willing to negotiate with a buyer if they have already been pre-approved for the purchase price of the home. The Matt Wolf Team can provide recommendations of local bank loan officers and trusted mortgage brokers.

Must I be pre-approved prior to visiting properties with you?

While it is not mandatory from some agents, it will definitely show all parties involved (buyer’s agent, listing agent and sellers) that you are indeed a serious buyer. Also, having a pre-approval letter issued from a lender greatly improves your ability to negotiate a better deal with the seller, and streamlines the time it takes to reach a signed deal! If you find the perfect house, having the pre-approval letter may better help to expedite the process and position yourself as a more attractive buyer than anyone else interested in the property. It’s in your best interest to get a pre-approval letter.

Do you work with first-time homebuyers?

Absolutely! Many of our past clients have been first-time buyers, and our team truly enjoys helping clients realize their dream of owning their first home! Buying your first home can be very nerve-racking experience, but our team understands that first time home buyers have a lot of questions, and we are here as a resource to help you navigate the home buying process and help you realize the American dream!

What does a Buyer's Agent do?

Traditionally, when a seller lists a house for sale, they hire an agent. That agent takes care of all aspects of selling the home… for the seller! The agent was hired by the seller, so that agent works for the seller. If you, as a buyer, call about a house you saw on the internet or after seeing the “for sale” sign in the yard, you are calling the agent that first and foremost works for the seller and has their best interest in mind! Now, if you work with a member of The Matt Wolf Team as a buyer’s agent, we will first search the MLS (Multi-List System, a realtor’s resource for all local listings) and other sources to find homes that meet your criteria. Our team will work with your schedule to visit the properties together. Throughout the process, our team is learning all about your needs so we can more effectively match you with the right property. The Matt Wolf Team will help you set up your financing plan, and educate you about the current market. While visiting homes, we will speak about pricing, whether or not a home we are touring is under-priced, over-priced, or priced accurately. Anything we talk about is held strictly confidential, so the seller will not know anything about you unless you choose to share that info. We represent you, so our goal is to help you get the absolute best deal you can! After we put a deal together, we continue to help you every step of the way up to the day of closing to make sure everything goes well. We assist with home inspections, financing matters, ensuring repairs are completed, and anything else that needs to be addressed. Working with a buyer’s agent is virtually free because the seller’s agent has already agreed to compensate this agent for an executed contract. Would you rather work with an agent that was hired by the seller, or work with one that only has your best interest in mind, and actively works to get you the best deal possible? Give The Matt Wolf Team a call when you are ready to learn more. We’re here to work for you.

What are the steps to buy a home?

One of the roles of a good buyer’s agent is to make the home buying process go smoothly. Below is an outline of the process.

  • Contact The Matt Wolf Team for a consultation to determine your needs as the buyer.

  • Your buyer’s agent will aid in discovering lender financing options available to you.

  • Your agent will network with other agents, search the MLS, conduct research, and use other resources to find as many home choices as possible that fit within your wants and needs

  • The Matt Wolf Team sets up appointments to see homes at times that are convenient for your schedule.

  • Your buyer’s agent will visit homes with you and make recommendations for you based on budget, school district, financing options, and more.

  • The Matt Wolf Team will write an offer, acquire all disclosures and explain all forms to you.

  • Your agent will present the agreed upon offer to the seller or seller’s agent and negotiate terms until a deal is accepted.

  • The Matt Wolf Team will arrange escrow account deposits, home inspections and correspond with the lender.

  • The team will submit and negotiate any necessary repairs, arrange that a title closing agent will efficiently handle the actual closing and resolve any issues that may arise along the way. The buyer’s agent will arrange for a property survey.

  • The agent will arrange for title insurance to be issued for the buyer and the buyer’s lender.

  • The Matt Wolf Team will assist the buyer in submitting any applications to condominium or Home Owner’s Associations for approvals.

  • The agent will review the closing statement to ensure there are no errors that can cost the buyer any unnecessary expenses.

  • The agent will conduct a walkthrough of the property with you prior to closing, then attend the closing. Our team will follow up after closing to answer questions or resolve any issues.

This is a general guideline. It’s important to use a buyer’s agent to help with this process. Remember, in most cases the services of The Matt Wolf Team are almost completely covered by the seller, so why not have the help!

How much are closing costs?

Closing costs are based on many factors including the purchase price of the home, the amount being financed and what is actually negotiated between the buyer and seller. In general when acquiring a pre-approval from a lender, they will be able to issue the buyer a “good faith estimate”. It is very important to shop a few lenders and compare all the good faith estimates because closing costs can vary greatly depending on which you choose. Call The Matt Wolf Team and we will be able to cover this area in much more detail and can recommend several mortgage lenders that are very competitive.

How long until we can move in after finding the best property?

That all depends. On a cash sale with no lender financing involved, we have seen sales occur in as little as two weeks. If financing is involved, closings usually will take place in 45 days.