Home buying process
Click on any of the steps below to learn more about the home buying process with Bowers Realty Group.
Bowers Realty Group offers full service real estate agent services to all our home buyers at no cost! It does not matter if you are a first-time home buyer, a move-up buyer, or someone downsizing... You pay us nothing! In Illinois, all real estate agent commissions are paid by the home sellers. Even though the home seller pays our commission, we are required to only work in your best interest! We represent you, not the seller, regardless of which side of a closing statement actually pays the commmission.
Home Buyer Consultation
Each client that works with our real estate agents receives a personalized home buyer consultation. During your initial consultation, our home buyer specialist realtors discuss the following with you:
The Home Buying Process - We discuss each step in the home buying process with you to ensure you know how the process works.
What is prompting your move? - We discuss why you are moving, what is prompting your move, etc. This provides us with additional information to further tailor you home search. For example, you may be starting a new job in a specific city or you may be having kids and want to move to a good school district, etc.
Your timeframe for moving - Every client has their own schedule in mind for how quickly they need or want to move (even if you are "just looking"). At this point we will discuss what the driving factors are in your schedule and how quickly you want or need to move.
Mortgage preapprovals - Our realtors will explain the mortgage preapproval process and provide a list of mortgage professionals that will provide you with a free, no obligation, mortgage preapproval.
Your price range - We will discuss your ideal price range and your max price range to setup your search.
Lifestyle questions - Our home buyer specialist real estate agents will ask you lifestyle questions related to your home search. Some examples of the lifestyle questions are: Do you have kids? Do you have pets? Do you want a fence? Etc.
Your ideal home locations - Our home buyer real estate brokers will ask you to define the ideal locations for your new home. These areas can include multiple cities, subdivisions, school districts, or any other geographical areas you wish.
Frequently asked questions - We will discuss the most frequently asked questions that home buyers have and provide answers for those questions as well as any personal questions you may have.
Your home search requirements - At this point we will discuss your needs and your wants for your new home. The information gathered at this point is critical in your home search. Not only can it be used in setting up your automated home search, your personal home buyer specialist realtor will use this information to manually search Illinois homes for sale for you on a regular basis.
Setup Your Home Search - The final step of the home buyer consultation is setting up your automated home search. Our home searches use real-time data from the MLS (the database all realtors use to upload home listings). You will always have the most accurate and update home search results when your work with Bowers Realty Group.
That seems like a lot of information for an initial home buyer consultation... and it is. Bowers Realty Group realtors go above and beyond what most agents do. We do so to ensure you receive the best service possible when purchasing your new home. While a lot of information is gathered, the process takes only a few minutes.
Home Buyer Preapproval
Your Bowers Realty Group home buyer specialist realtor will explain the mortgage preapproval process to you and will recommend trusted mortgage experts that will provide you with a mortgage preapproval. All our recommended mortgage professionals provide preapprovals free of charge and without any requirements to use their company for your mortgage.
Every mortgage professional we recommend has been tested and used before by Bowers Realty Group. We do not recommend companies without knowing their services meet the expectations we demand for our clients.
Essentially, you provide basic personal information to one of our recommeded mortgage professionals and they provide you with an estimate of how large of a mortgage you can take out for your home purchase.
This process is NOT applying for a mortage. When you actually apply for a mortgage, your chosen lender will require much more information. A preapproval does two main things. First, it lets you know if you can be approved for as much as you think for a mortgage. Second, it provides sellers with confidence that you can be approved for a mortgage. When sellers believe you can be approved for a mortgage, it makes your offer much more attractive than offers without preapprovals!
Searching For Homes
Each of our home buyer clients receives:
Automated searches - Your automated searches will send new results that meet your criteria to your email. We will setup as many searches as you wish! The first time your search runs, you will receive everything on the market that meets your criteria. Every email thereafter will contain only new listings that meet your criteria or properties that have had a status change like a price reduction. These searches will show you homes for sale that cannot be found elsewhere online, including on our website, Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, etc.
Direct access to search the MLS - This allows you to search homes directly where real estate agents list the homes for sale. This will save you time and frustration by eliminating the need to search outdated websites or websites that show properties that are under contract already.
What is a home showing? - The home showing phase of the home buying process is where you request to see homes in person and one of our realtors takes you to view the homes (on showings).
What homes can you show me? - We can show you every home that is for sale in Northern Illinois. Your real estate agent can show you every home for sale that is listed on the MLS. This includes any home listed with any other real estate agents and any other real estate brokerages. Additionally, we are able to show you all For Sale By Owner homes.
Requesting showings: - There are multiple ways to schedule a showing with your agent:
- Use any of the Contact Agent, Request Showing, or Message buttons throughout our website
- Send a text message to your agent
- Call your agent directly or call our office at 630-712-1921
- Email your agent directly
- Request showings in your MLS account that we create for you
- If you are on other sites like Zillow, Realtor.com, Trulia, etc. simply text, call, or email your agent (Contact forms on other websites will not go directly to your agent!)
Writing Offers on Homes
The insight and knowledge our Realtors have in writing offers on homes is a strategic advantage over other real estate agents, so we do not disclose details on the internet. Suffice it to say, we do our research. Our Realtors have been trained on how to determine the "true" value of properties, how to offer "attractive" home purchase offers while ensuring our clients get the best deal possible when purchasing a home.
After you work with your agent to define an attractive offer, your agent will prepare the paperwork for you to digitally sign. After your agent has received your signed offer, your agent will present it to the home seller or the home sellers real estate agent. The home sellers can accept your offer, reject your offer, or send you a counter-offer.
In the event that the seller decides to make a counter-offer to your offer to purchase the home, your agent will employ the time tested tactics that we have trained them on to ensure you receive the best deal possible on your purchase. We require that our agents adhere to our negotiation techniques because we build our business on satisfied real estate clients and the referrals they send us... and quite frankly, our home buyer negotiation practices not only work, they are the best in Illinois.
During the back-and-forth of negotiations, your agent will keep you fully apprised of the negotiations. Additionally, your agent will provide you with advice, but will always leave the decision of what to accept, reject, or counter up to you! Our agents are here to inform and guide you as well as present you with strategies, not make final decisions for you!
Contract-to-Close is where most real estate transactions fall apart. Our Realtors do not have real estate deals fall apart...plain and simple. Most "real estate agents" are shocked and upset when an issue occurs in a transaction and lose their cool. These "full-time agents" lose their cool because they do not know how to deal with the real estate issues that arise during contract to close. They do not know what to do because no brokerage offers training on all the issues that can arise in a real estate transaction. The only education is through experience. This leads to a real estate transaction falling apart. In the end both the seller and the buyer lose in this situation due to an inexperienced or over-stressed/worked agent.
We have an expert Contract-to-Close team that has been trained to ensure roadblocks in our real estate transactions are nothing more than ant hills. There is nothing that suprises or shocks our Contract-to-Close team. There is nothing that has happened in the last 30 years of real estate transactions that our team is not equipped to deal with. Rest assured, your deal will close and you will walk away knowing you got a good deal on your home purchase!
Our Real Estate Agents offer recommendations on which home inspection companies you should use. You are always free to choose your own. We only recommends home inspectors (home, mold, radon, etc.) that we have worked with and trust.
Your dedicated home buyer specialist realtor will accompany you during your home inspection. Your Bowers Realty Group home buyer specialist will analyze the results of the home inspection and explain the results to you.
Finally, if there are any issues found during the home inspection, your agent immediately becomes your advocate to ensure that the home sellers either replace or repair any issues or that they credit you the cost of the repairs at closing (if you wish).
Final Walk Through
In order to build personal bonds with our clients, we ensure that you always meet with the same realtor. We ensure that the same realtor who helped you find a home is the same realtor that completes your final walk through with you.
During your final walk through, you will walk through the home you are purchasing, prior to closing on your home purchase, to ensure that nothing has changed in the home since you made your offer on the property. Bowers Realty Group home buyer specialist realtors have been trained on what to look for during final walk throughs. This is one of the many ways our home buyer realtors protect our clients to ensure they receive the best real estate services. Some examples of what our home buyer specialists make sure you check are:
- Appliances - Are they in the home and in working condition?
- Fixtures - Are the same fixtures that were in the home when you made your offer (believe it or not some sellers change them)
- Interior Condition - Are there any holes in the walls? Is the garage door opener is still installed? Are any included window treatments still in the home? Etc.
- Exeterior Condition - Is the siding in the same condition? Is the roof in the same condition? Did the sellers leave a key to the shed? Etc.
- And Many, Many More
Excitement... Sign here... Anticipation...Sign Here... Excitement... Repeat Multiple times. That is how your closing is going to go. Bowers Realty Group Contract-to-Close team ensures that their are never any suprise issues at closing. Our team of real estate experts ensures all the following are complete before the close of your home purchase:
- Review all the contracts
- Mitigate any roadblocks
- Review all HUDs to ensure they are accurate
- Ensure all financing is in order
- Ensure we have "clear to close"