Home Buying Frequently Asked Questions

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Home Buying Frequently Asked Questions

Thinking of buying a permanent or vacation home on the Crystal Coast but have some questions about the process? We’ve got answers!

1. Where should I start the process?

Organize and review your finances. Set a budget and figure out what you will be able to afford for a down payment. Use our handy mortgage calculator to see what a monthly mortgage payment might look like for you.
Start exploring the many communities in and around Carteret County to see which might be best for you.

2. How do I know what to look for in a home?

If you’re buying a permanent home, this is completely based on your personal preferences and needs. How many rooms will you need? How important is proximity to shopping, dining, and entertainment? How about beaches? Will you be commuting to work? If you’re purchasing a vacation home or rental property, your criteria will likely be a bit different. In other words, you might be more concerned with being within walking distance from the beach or having a neighborhood boat ramp than the number of bedrooms. Need ideas? Browse our Crystal Coast featured listings, or start searching homes by amenities and features.

3. Why should I use a real estate agent?

A good agent can guide you through the financial and legal complexities of buying a home on the Crystal Coast. This is especially important if you’re buying a vacation or investment property, as the process might vary a bit from the traditional real estate process. A local agent will be a Crystal Coast expert and can provide vital insight into its neighborhoods and communities, thus helping you determine which area is best for your home. Again, this is especially important for investors looking for good areas for rental properties. An expert agent will negotiate on your behalf to ensure you’re getting the best home at the best price. Buying a rental property but don’t want to deal with the complicated process of finding renters and constantly maintaining the home? A good agent may also offer property management services.

4. Where and how can I get a loan?

Mortgage loans are typically available through banks, credit unions, private mortgage companies, and government state lenders. A good place to start is by visiting any banks or credit unions you currently have accounts with. Your real estate agent can also help connect you with local lenders and may be able to provide information on the types of loan options that might be available to you (i.e. special loans for first-time buyers, investors, veterans, etc.).

5. Once I find my home, what will I have to pay upfront?

  • Earnest money: This is the “security deposit” you pay when you submit your offer to prove to the seller that you are serious. After your offer is accepted, it is applied to your down payment or closing costs.
  • Down Payment: This is a percentage of the cost of your home. The amount will depend on your loan; your lender can give you a better idea of what your down payment will look like.
  • Closing Costs: These are typically low for buyers and represent the fees associated with processing paperwork, lender and attorney fees, and inspections or appraisals.

6. What monthly costs will I pay?

Mortgages typically consist of four parts, the Principle (the amount borrowed), the Interest (based on your borrowing rates), the Taxes (property taxes, determined by your town), and Insurance (your choice of homeowners insurance).

Other costs can include utilities, HOA or condo fees, and other town fees, such as sewer taxes, trash fees, or water use fees. If you’re purchasing a rental property, keep in mind that you will also need to pay for things like advertising, regular maintenance, and upkeep, cleaning between residents, or a property management fee, if you’d prefer not to handle all the details on your own.

Ask your real estate agent about additional fees associated with your particular home, community, or neighborhood.

I Still Have Questions!

We’ve got more answers! Contact us today and we can answer any of your questions about buying a permanent, vacation, or investment home on the Crystal Coast. We’re here to prepare you to Just Add Water to your lifestyle!

Want more information? Learn more about buying a home on the Crystal Coast of North Carolina!

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