If you need financing, one of the first requirements to buy a house in Miami (or condo), is getting pre-approved for a mortgage. We all know the typical reasons: making sure you know what you can afford, understanding your credit if there any issues, etc.
This is where many of my buyers say, “Don’t worry Jamey, we are good I have a good credit score, a ton of money saved up and I know I can get financing. Let’s just start looking at homes, and I will do that later.”
And although it is great if you are qualified, there are often many other reasons (equally as important) to get working on this asap, and it’s not just about your credit score.
Requirements To Buy A House In Miami: Why We Need the Pre-Approval ASAP
1. Your agent needs the pre-approval to fill out the sales contract.
In Miami, we fill out a sales contract to make an offer. There are several sections of the that deal with financing contingencies. We need the information from the pre-approval letter to put together the offer. Once all parties sign this document, it becomes the executed contract by which the sales contract terms and conditions are governed.
And, you want it completed precisely because it’s a “contingency item” on the buyer’s side in the contract.
If you don’t have an established relationship with a lender and/or a pre-approval, it’s going to be challenging for your agent to complete this section correctly.
2. The seller’s agent is going to call the lender.
When an offer is made on a property, it is customary to attach the pre-approval letter to the offer. Typically the seller’s agent calls the lender on the letter to confirm that it’s a valid pre-approval. If you don’t have a pre-approval letter, most sellers won’t take the offer super serious, or they will have to wait for you to get one, (if they are willing to wait). If there’s competition, this can be a problem.
3. To stand out from the competition.
One of the most important reasons to get pre-approved is to be able to get a good deal and stand out from the competition. If you are trying to find a “good deal” you are most likely in a more competitive segment of the market.
You will want your offer to stand out. If three offers are sent in with a pre-approval letter and one is not, guess which ones will probably have a better chance of being considered?
4. Insurance, flood, taxes, and repairs oh my!
When a pre-approval is prepared the extras like insurance, flood and taxes will be estimated. Some homes cost more because the insurance is more expensive or the taxes are more expensive. Even if you can afford it, maybe you don’t want to. Maybe you have set up a housing budget. You will discuss this with your lender and she will create a plan around this budget.
So it’s important that we have a good understanding of these monthly budgeted items and from there we can build a search of properties that most likely match the budget. There is nothing worse than spending your time looking at properties that don’t match the requirements of the financing and budget you have set as a goal.
5. And lastly, condominiums.
Condominiums are in their own little category, and it’s essential that you are working with a skilled agent and also a lender who is very experienced in the Miami condominium market.
When you need financing on a condominium in the Miami market, the lender will vet the condominium building. Some buildings just don’t pass the financing qualifications. There may be too many renters, the budget may not have the correct amount of reserves, there may be a commercial component to the building that they don’t approve of, etc. There are many reasons.
With that said, you need to have a clear understanding what the lender will consider so you can spend time looking at condos in buildings that are most eligible for financing.
This is a very detailed and complex component to buying a condominium in the Miami area. It is possible. However, you need to be sure to work with professionals who can best guide you through the process.
Many potential home buyers underestimate the importance speaking to a lender because they feel that they are already qualified and know what they can afford. But getting a pre-approval letter is so much more than just qualifying the buyer.
If you have more questions about successfully buying or selling your home in today’s market, give us a call at 305-793-8965.
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Miami Real Estate Neighborhood Updates
Ok, let’s get right into all the latest listings, price reductions, and solds from some of the popular neighborhoods of Miami and Miami Beach.
We are in the process of revamping our weekly updates and will add more neighborhoods bit by bit. Enjoy!
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Miami real estate is like every other in regards to today’s market condition it’s all about market supply/demand, condition, location, and price. If you have any questions about buying or selling in today’s market, give us a ring, and one of us can go over what you can expect today: 305-793-8965