How Much Time Does It Take to Buy Homes?

From pre-approval for a mortgage to the actual inspection and handing over of the property, there’s a lot that goes into buying a home. You can expect the buying of a house to take about four to eight weeks if no unplanned delays occur. COVID-19 has also slowed the process a bit, but the delay hasn’t been proven to be significant. Knowing what you need and making preparations can save you a lot of time down the road.

Get Pre-approval for a Mortgage

If you start the pre-approval process prior to actually searching for the home that you want to purchase, you can significantly cut down on the time it takes to close. This usually takes a few days as you’ll be going back and forth with lending institutions and providing them with documentation that they’ll need as well as background information on you. It’s also advisable to get estimates for loans from a few different institutions if you’re going to be getting a mortgage so that you get the best offer.

The time that you take to search for your ideal home will vary based on your personal preferences and needs. You might already know the neighbourhood that you want to live in or you might need to do online and in-person research.

Make an Offer

This step usually takes place after you’ve been pre-approved for a mortgage. It also means that you’ve found the residence that you want to purchase and that you’re ready to talk about money. A reliable and trustworthy real estate agent is necessary for this part of the home-buying process as they will submit the offer on your behalf.

If you’re paying in cash, the time it’s going to take to close will be shorter, as you won’t need to seek financing with a bank or other lending institution. It should still be noted that paying with cash doesn’t guarantee that there won’t be a waiting period brought upon by unforeseeable emergencies and legal red tape.

Move to the Contract Phase

If the seller agrees to your offer, the next step would be to move into the contract phase. You’d then make an earnest money deposit, which is a sum of money paid in advance to make a firm commitment to buying the property.

Inspect the Home

Although the time that this needs to be done varies according to location, it’s advisable to have the property inspected within at least 10 days of signing the purchase agreement. More time could be added to this step of the process if there are any substantial issues uncovered, like structural issues that need repair. In case of any major issues, there could be a significant delay in the buying process.

The final steps would be to sign the closing documents and take care of any closing fees. This can usually be taken care of within a day. Overall, the time frame for buying a home can take as short as a month to as long as a year, depending on individual circumstances, such as credit history and personal preferences.


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