First Time Home Buyers

Welcome First Time Home Buyers…..

 Buying your first house likely represents the greatest financial commitment you have ever made. At the same time owning your first house comes with a special pride in your new home that sometimes rivals that of a new child. While these joys should be relished, the liability and responsibility of new home ownership should not be downplayed. As a first time “Home Buyer Specialist”, (Remax Platinum agent Ken Collica). I will help provide an education for those who have no experience buying a house. You will learn about selecting a home, and how to buy it, the home mortgage loan process to finance it and more. We have assembled a lot of information to help make your first house buying experience a great one.

Everyone experiences some nervousness when buying a first home, but with the base of knowledge you will gain while learning from us will represent just the first of many positive real estate transactions for you.

You can’t afford to wait! There is an old saying that states “don’t wait to buy real estate, buy real estate and wait” Some of you visiting this website can buy today, some of you can’t. I am dedicated to helping Homebuyers regardless if you are ready today or tomorrow. Some of you feel there is something in your income, credit, or employment history that will prevent you from buying a home now, but DO NOT GIVE UP WITHOUT FINDING OUT FOR SURE, IT’S FREE TO ASK. Today we have programs to fit virtually everyone. The investment reward and the tax savings are too much to put off your decision any longer.

Have you said you don’t need the house? You have a roof over your head! You can wait one- more year – it’s not going to kill you. Maybe not physically – but certainly financially! Waiting one year will cause the average First Time Home Buyer to loose on average, $10,000 in lost appreciation and tax benefits. Don’t make the same mistakes that many others make by waiting. If you wait one year it will cost you on average of $10,000. If you wait 2 years $21,000!

What about financing? Many initial appointments today are different than the past. At Huron Valley Financial Inc., meetings with buyers are informational, not confrontational. Our team member and Senior Mortgage Banker, Peggy Wilson, is giving clients information, not the other way around. The actual loan approval is most often done in advance; your loan is pre-approved before we even meet. Our website offers you the opportunity to get a free pre-approval. The pre-approval gives us all the information we need to tell you about all the programs that are available to you. You don’t have to sit down and have your lives dissected before you find out where you stand. The Free Services offered on this website provides you with the types of information that make you a confident buyer who knows all the options. With all the facts at your fingertips, you are much more comfortable when it comes to making decisions.

OK Let’s Get Started…It’s easy as

There are a number of steps that need to be taken when you ore planning to buy a home. The steps are extremely important if you are going to get the information and knowledge that you should have in order to make on informed buying decision. Although they can be categorized as shown below, each step is an education by itself because they contain a lot of information with which to become familiar.

  • Getting Pre-Approved
  • Visiting with your 1st Time Home Buyers Specialist
  • Going Shopping For a Home
  • Making an Offer
  • Finalizing a Mortgage
  • Completing the Home Inspections
  • Selecting a Title Company
  • Obtaining Homeowner’s Insurance
  • Completing the Walkthrough
  • Going to Settlement
  • Moving Day
  • About Us


This is an extremely important process because unless you’re paying cash, it doesn’t make sense looking at any homes unless you can be approved for a mortgage. When an offer is made on a property, the seller wants some assurances in writing that you are credit worthy to obtain a home mortgage loan. This is done by including a pre-qualify or pre-approval letter from the mortgage lender, Information is gathered from you regarding your income1 current debts and work history and a meeting is held later with a lender.

Visiting With Your 1st Time Home Buyer Specialist

The purpose of visiting with your “First Time Home Buyer Specialist” Ken Collica (Realtor) is to get acquainted with each other since you will be in constant contact over the next 60-90 days. During this visit, significant time is spent discussing the steps outlined in step #1 and answering any questions that you might have. A home shopping “wish list” will be developed that indicate specifically what features you would like to have in your home. These include type and style of home, its location, number of bedrooms and baths, a family room, a garage, a fireplace, a large or small yard, etc. etc. Having an idea of what you want and what you’re willing to spend will give you an idea of the area where you can expect to find your home. During the Shopping for a Home phase, you will be able to see first hand what your budget will buy and then you can zero in on what features of your “wish list” are really important to you! A Buyer’s Agency contract will be agreed upon and we will furnish you with a copy of an Estimated Buyer’s Closing Costs sheet outlining the monies that you will need.

Going Shopping For a Home

This is what you’ve been waiting for. Don’t forget to bring your “wish list” We will provide you with a “Home Buyers” Property Scoreboard sheet for rating each of the homes you will see. You will get to see first-hand what homes that are currently available that meet the criteria you have requested. Appointments will be made ahead of time so it is extremely important to be on time. We will look at an average of 5-10 homes depending upon our time constraints. We can usually accomplish this in about 3-4 hours or less. We will most likely spend more time at some homes than at others. This is normal. We will be scrutinizing each home’s features, condition, and location. Sometimes, we may go back the same day to see a particular home that interests you a second time.

It’s hard to predict just how long it will take to find a home that’s right for you! Sometimes, it happens the very first day out so don’t be surprised. You will “know” instinctively if it’s the right one!

Are You Ready To Take That First Step? Apply Today For

 Pre-Approval at “Huron Valley Financial”,

Or, Call Me If You Have Any Further Questions. 734-604-4426

When You Find the Home You Want To Buy            


Once you have found a home that you would like to buy, an offer is put together that is given to the seller’s agent for presenting to the seller. Your offer will contain the price that you’re willing to pay, the date you would like to settle on the property, and all property inclusions that stay with the property like the refrigerator, stove, washer, dryer, draperies and curtains, etc. It will also state the type of financing that you’re obtaining, the amount of your earnest money deposit, any seller concessions, and any inspection contingencies that you may have. Included with your offer is the lender pre-qualify or approval letter. Don’t forget to bring your checkbook. An earnest money deposit, sometimes called a good faith deposit is necessary and is generally 1to2% of the offer.

So for an example a $200,000 home the earnest money deposit could be $1,000 to $2,000. This is credited to you at the time of settlement and will be deducted off the amount of money you will need.

When the offer is finalized, it will be given to the seller’s agent for presentation to the seller. The seller will either accept your offer as written, counter your offer with changes, or reject your offer. We will negotiate the offer on your behalf following your instructions so it is important to be readily available. If your offer is accepted by the seller, your offer now becomes a fully ratified Contract of Sale. If your offer is rejected or neither party can come to an agreement, we continue your home search.


Once we have ratified the contract of sale, it is time to finalize the loan paperwork with the lender. This generally needs to be done immediately or within a few days. There are numerous loan programs available ranging from the standard FHA, VA, or 5%, 10%, 20% down conventional loans to 100% financing that require no down payment. The payback period can range from 10 to 30 or 40 years and can include principal and interest money borrowed or could be interest only payments. Interest rates can either be fixed or adjustable or a combination of both. We will assist you in making the decision to choose the loan program tailored to your needs. The lender will order an independent appraisal of the property’s value.

COMPLETING THE HOME INSPECTIONS                             

If your offer contained a provision for any home inspections, they are generally done within a specific time frame, usually within 7-10 days of contract ratification. Inspections could include a general home inspection, lead-based paint, radon, termite, mold, well, and septic. We will assist you in scheduling these inspections, attending the inspections with you, and if there are any deficiencies found help you to negotiate their repair by the seller. If we are not able to successfully negotiate the desired repairs, you are not required to continue with the purchase, and the Contract of Sale will become null and void and any earnest money deposit will be refunded back to you. However, the cost of the inspection is not refundable but this is small in the scheme of things since it helped to uncover property deficiencies.

Selecting a Title Company

 A title company is chosen to coordinate all the paperwork between buyer, buyer’s lender, seller, seller’s current mortgagor, and the local city/county office where the public records for the property are kept.

The title company searches the county records for any liens and encumbrances, if any, on the property, prepares a new deed with the buyer’s name and whether title will be held singly, joint-tenancy, tenancy-in-common, or tenants by entirety, pays off the seller’s mortgagor, pro-rates taxes, and home owners association (if any) obtains final buyers signatures on loan documents, and issues buyer and lender title insurance and collects certified funds from all parties involved to transfer ownership to the buyer.

Obtaining Homeowner’s Insurance

The lender will require you to obtain insurance on the property since they have a vested interest in the property should anything happen while you own it. This is called casualty insurance and can be obtained from most national companies. It needs to be done sufficiently ahead of settlement.

Generally you can obtain it from the company with which you have your car insurance. Usually, they are able to give you a discounted rate since you already have insurance with them. The agent needs to contact the lender for the proper mortgage clause endorsement to the policy. You will have to pay the first year premium up front and get a receipt from the agent to give to the lender. Future payments will be made from your escrow account that is set up as part of your payments from the lender.


COMPLETING THE WALK-THROUGH                                       

A final walk-through of the property is made several days prior to the actual settlement date. The purpose of the walk-through is to make sure that the property is in substantially the same condition as it was the day you made the offer. You will be given an opportunity to make sure all electrical, heating and air conditioning and plumbing systems are in operating condition and that any appliances that stay with the house are in operating condition. You will check to see that any repairs that were done as a result of any inspections have been properly completed. Be sure to call the gas and electric company to have service put in your name the day of settlement and make arrangements with the telephone and cable company as well.


Settlement will be scheduled on the date specified in the Contract of Sale at a time that is mutually agreeable by both parties. It usually takes a minimum of 1 hour to complete the myriad of documents. Both seller and buyer are expected to be at settlement! Any changes in the settlement date must be agreed upon in writing by both parties. You will bring to settlement a certified check or a bank cashier’s check made payable to you. You will endorse it over to the title company at time of settlement. Any overage will be refunded back to you from the title the same day. You will also be asked for your drivers licensed to make a copy.

Once settlement is completed, you will be given copies of all documents signed plus,

             “THE KEYS” to your home!!!

MOVING DAY        

Once settlement is completed, you can move in the very same day, unless you have earlier given the seller the right to post-occupy for a given time frame. Make sure you schedule the moving truck ahead of time and line up friends and family to help on the big day.


A designated buyer’s agent acts solely on behalf of the buyer. Designated buyer’s agents will disclose to the buyer known information about the seller which may be used to benefit the buyer.

The duties that a buyer agent owes to the buyer include:

  • promoting the best interest of the buyer
  • disclosing to the buyer all facts that might affect or influence the buyer’s decision to tender an offer to purchase
  • keeping confidential the buyer’s motivations for buying
  • presenting all offers on behalf of the buyer
  • disclosing to buyer all information known to the buyer’s agent about the willingness of the seller to complete the sale or to accept a lower price

When Remax Platinum, acts as the agent for the buyer, that buyer has the freedom to discuss the value of the properties, negotiating strategies, and personal finances with the sales associate. The buyer can obtain the associate’s opinion concerning the condition of the property, the effect of any improvements and a variety of other information which a designated seller’s agent cannot provide. The designated buyer’s agent will make a commitment to make every reasonable effort to locate a property with certain features as described by the buyer.

It must be remembered, however, that the designated buyer’s agent is not an attorney, accountant, appraiser, property inspector, engineer or surveyor. The buyer will need to seek the advice of those professionals and others for the expertise they can provide.

About Me,                                                                    

Call Me Today!  

Over 13 years of real estate experience specializing in helping the first time home buyer realize their goal of home ownership.

The Remax brand is known nationally and internationally and Remax Platinum in Washtenaw & Livingston Counties can provide you with up to the minute information on all aspects of real estate in today’s market

Educating home buyers is the key ingredient in our success ratio. It is vitally important that first time home buyers understand the home buying process in all of its nuances, not only before the sale but during and after. Our success in achieving this goal speaks for its self. We are confident that your experience will likewise be rewarding.

When you decide that you would like to purchase your first home, remember, that choosing the right agent is the most important aspect of any real estate transaction.

I, would like to represent you, as your first time home buyer’s agent? Will you call me today?

Testimonials provided upon request.

Ken Collica
Remax Platinum
Ann Arbor, Mi.

Contact Me

Ken Collica
Mobile Phone: 734-604-4426
Toll-Free: 734-604-4426
RE/MAX Platinum
325 W Eisenhower
Ann Arbor, MI 48103
Office: 734-741-1000

Connect With Me

Find Us on Facebook Connect with us on LinkedIn