Category Archives: Buying a Home

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Brevard County Real Estate

Closing Terms Meanings

The costs and terms associated with a home purchase closing can be somewhat daunting to the first time home buyer or those who have not closed on many properties.

Closing Term meanings
The idea here is to help those who are selling or purchasing real estate to be more familiar with the terms and costs associated.

Some of the terminology associated with a real estate closing:

  • Title insurance
    Title insurance is a written document on file that assures the new buyer that title to the home being purchased is free and clear to be legally transferred. Should a problem arise with the title, the title insurer pay any legal damages. A title insurance policy may either protect the home buyer, mortgage company or both.
  • Inspections
    The inspection(s) on a home purchase is meant to protect the home buyer from any hidden or otherwise damages to the home prior to closing. The home buyer typically pays for this service. The most common inspection are:

WDO (Wood destroying organisms) This is not just about termites. Wood destroying organisms includes termites, but also covers mold, mildew, wet-rot and dry rot.

4 Point A 4 Point inspection is a thorough inspection of the roof, electrical wiring and outlets, plumbing and appliances of the home.

Wind Mitigation A wind mitigation inspection verifies that the home is safe and prepared for any natural weather event that could potentially cause damage due to high winds. Roof, decking, roof to truss attachments, windows and wind coverings are some of the areas where the inspector will focus his attention on.
A fee paid to a certified person who searches the dwelling for termites and other destructive creatures

  • Appraisal The appraisal is typically paid for by the home buyer and is ordered from the lending company. If a home is a cash deal, the appraisal is not required. The appraiser will complete an assessment on the value of the home so the lender can determine if the funds being delivered to the borrower are equitable to the value of the property.
  • Survey The survey is another service typically paid for by the home buyer and gives the home buyer an accurate measurement of the boundaries and property lines of the property being purchased.
  • Origination Fee A fee that is charged to the home buyer to create a mortgage loan. It is typically a predetermined percentage of the mortgage amount.
  • Credit report The credit report is a documented report of a persons financial history. It assists the lender in determining the risk of whether a borrower is more likely or not to default on their mortgage. The higher a person’s credit rating, the more likely they are to get a lower interest rate.
  • Title services The title search is a fee that covers administrative costs provided by the title company or escrow agent. It also covers costs associated with the title search and title insurance.
  • Document preparation This is a fee that the lender charges to a borrower for the documents signed by the home buyer at the closing.
  • Attorney, closing or settlement fee The amount charged by an attorney for witnessing and approving the mortgage loan transaction.
  • Discount points The borrower pays monies up front to the lender in exchange for the lender to reduce the interest rate. One “point” is equal to 1% of the loan amount.
  • Flood certification Some lenders will access a fee that covers the cost to determine whether or not the home your are purchasing falls within a flood zone. If it does, the flood insurance will be required to continue to process and approve your home loan.
  • Postal/courier If you are closing remotely, then this fee covers the cost to mail your closing paperwork for signatures.
  • Wire transfer fee This fee is charged to transfer funds at closing.

Any time during the process of looking for a home to purchase or any time during the process of the purchase, always ask your Realtor for clarification of anything you are not clear on or understand.

If you do not have a Realtor, feel free to call or email us and we will be more than glad to answer any questions you may have.

Brevard County Realty


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Brevard County Florida Real Estate

What Do I Owe at Closing?

There are so many aspects of purchasing or selling a home, it is understandable why it can be somewhat overwhelming to the person selling or buying sometimes.   Besides all of the contract and legal aspects of purchasing, the financial aspect can be the most stressful. One of the most common questions I get asked as a Realtor, is, “What do I owe at closing?”

“How much is it going to cost me at the closing table to sell my house?” “How much is it going to cost me at the closing table to purchase this house?”

While each individual purchase or sale is as unique as the other, there are too many variables that create a closing document for a seller or a buyer to go into here at one time.

What I can provide you however, is a picture of what the customary costs of selling or buying a home are. You can then discuss with your Realtor or Lender about the specific costs for each line item.

Customary Seller’s Expenses

  • Title search and closing fee (approximately $500)
  • Owner’s title insurance policy, if applicable, as per the sales contract. (varies with sales price of home.  i.e. $250,000 sales price would be approximately $1,500)
  • Process satisfaction of mortgage for existing mortgage. (pay off what you still owe on the home you are selling.)
  • Municipal lien search – (approximately $75)
  • Brokerage/Transaction Coordinator fee $300 – $500)
  • Doc Stamps on deed. (documentary stamps) – $0.70 per $100 based on sales price. (In Miami-Dade County, it is $.60 per $100)
  • Home warranty, if applicable per sales contract (approximately $500)
  • 1st or 2nd mortgage payoff
  • Property taxes – prorated for time occupied calendar year.  (varies)
  • Real estate commissions for selling agent and buyer’s agent. (typically 6% of sales price – 3% each side)

Customary Buyer’s Expenses

  • Title Search and closing fee (approximately $250)
  • Owner’s title search insurance policy, if applicable, as per the sales contract
  • Lender title insurance policy
  • Endorsements to the lender’s policy, if applicable
  • Recording fee for the warranty deed (approximately $75.00)
  • Property taxes – prorated for time occupied calendar year.  (varies)
  • Recording fee for the mortgage (approximately $75.00)
  • Documentary stamps on the mortgage – ($.35 per $100 based on the mortgage amount)
  • Intangible tax on the mortgage ($.002 X the mortgage amount)
  • Assignment of mortgage (if applicable) (varies)
  • Inspection of the subject property – typically includes a 4point inspection, wind mitigation inspection and WDO inspection (wood destroying organisms) (approximately $300 – $500 depending on the size of the home)
  • Appraisal of the subject property (approximately $350 – $500)
  • Survey of the subject property (approximately $300)
  • Condominium approval fees and dues, if applicable
  • Homeowner’s association dues and transfer fee, if applicable
  • Homeowner’s insurance and possibly flood insurance
  • Lender’s fees which could include, but not limited to: loan origination fee, credit report fee, tax service fee, underwriting fee, document preparation fee, prepaid interest, PMI and establishment of an escrow account.  ($1,500 – $3,000)  (Varies from lender to lender)

As I mentioned above, no two sales or purchase transactions are identical. It is always best to refer to your lender and or your Realtor when it comes to questions about your closing. It is imperative that you are well aware and prepared for all of the costs involved in the transferring of title on a property transaction.

If you are thinking about selling your home or in the market to purchase a new home, our team of Real Estate Professionals would love the opportunity to talk with you.

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Brevard County Real Estate

5 Mistakes When Making an Offer

Category : Buying a Home

5 Mistakes When Making an Offer

In today’s Real Estate Market, if you want to purchase a specific home, you have to be aware of what is at stake. Currently, we are in what is considered a Seller’s Market. Basically, what this means is, there are more buyer’s than there are properties to purchase. When you find a property you are in love with, you want to ensure that your offer stands out and makes the grade! To make this happen, be sure to avoid these 5 Mistakes when making an offer.

5 Mistakes When Making an Offer


There is a very popular saying the the real estate community. “Time is of the essence!” By the time you have found that dream house, chances are, there are a half dozen other people who feel the same as you do. If you wait too long to make a solid offer on the home, you may find yourself in a multiple-bid/multiple-offer situation. Even worse, you may find that it has already gone under contract, and you have missed out all together.
Have all of your “ducks in a row” before you even go shopping for a house. A pre-approval or at the very least, a pre-qualification from a good lender is essential or a statement showing proof of funds if you are planning on paying cash. Have enough liquidated funds for a solid escrow deposit. This way, when you find that home, you are ready to pounce and make it yours!

Pre-Approved or Pre-Qualified

One of the smartest things you can do as a Buyer, especially in a Seller’s Market, is to get pre-approved or at the very least, pre-qualified through a local lender.

It is a normal practice to have your pre-approval or pre-qualified letter for the exact amount that you are offering. The reasoning behind this is that it would prohibit the seller from knowing how much you can go up to for a purchase, and thus, weaken your posture for negotiating.
In a Seller’s market, this could potentially have the opposite effect. Your pre-approval or pre-qualification letter is the exact amount of your offer could relay a message, right or wrong, to the seller that you have “capped” out of your potential buying power and conversely, weaken you posture when compared to other offers.

Don’t Lowball Too Low

I have seen it happen all too often, despite my recommendations to my buyers. For some, making an offer on a home is like playing poker. Come in as low as possible to and see what the seller is willing to do. Buying a home is not like playing cards! Lowballing a seller often backfires on the buyer, especially in a seller’s market. There must be a method and reason to your offer. A low offer may be justified. Be sure to have your Realtor have a good argument with solid facts, such as recent comps, for the low offer. Otherwise, the seller’s are likely to simply reject your offer without a counter offer. At this point, you have lost credibility with the seller and will likely have to counter-bid yourself if you still want that home.

Do Not Waive Your Contingencies

Buying a home is a very complicated and delicate transaction. It is likely, if not the most significant purchase, one of the most significant purchases you will ever make. Agreeing to waive the inspection, appraisal or financial contingencies is like playing Russian roulette. Inspection, appraisal and financing contingencies are put in place to protect you. If the seller requests you waive these, have your Realtor go to bat for you.

Represent Yourself in a Positive Light

When posturing yourself to make a purchase for that house you just have to have, it is a good idea to present yourself in as much of a positive light to the seller as possible. Likely, there are other offer’s on the same home you are wanting to purchase. Setting yourself apart from the competition is what will get you that home! It isn’t as simple as who the most qualified buyer is to the seller or selling agent. It often comes down to who is the most easiest to deal with and most likely to get to the closing table with as little drama and hassle as possible.

If you are thinking of buying a home or thinking about selling your property, being prepared is the best tool you have. Not sure where to start, seek out a local licensed Realtor to help guide you!
A Realtor does not cost anything for anyone wanting to purchase a home. A Realtor’s fees (commission) is paid for by the Seller. If you are the Seller, talk to the Realtor about their fees, many times, those fees can be negotiated.

Regardless of whether you are buying or selling, a Realtor can save you thousands of dollars and help the entire process much smoother, easier and less stressful!

Brevard County Realty