Buying A Home

Overview of the Purchase Process

Here is an overview of a typical home-buying process:


Step 1 -   Meet with your Realtor


Almost all homes are bought with the help of a realtor.  Discussing needs and wants along with goals, helps me find the best suitable situation and home for you. 


At this point in the process I will:


  • Listen carefully to your story and where exactly you would like to end up in the purchase process.  Along with recommending people from my "team" that I have worked with closely and know will take good care of you!  


  • Keep you updated on home availability in the style of home and location you are looking for.


  • Answer your questions  


  • Schedule showings and prepare a proactive plan to reach your goals as quick and as diligently as possible.

Step 2 - Get Prequalified with a Mortgage Lender 

Even BEFORE you meet with me, you could begin the process of a mortgage commitment, which starts with prequalification.  This helps you determine where you are financially in the home buying process.  This gives me the range of prices of homes you can afford.  I will only work with prequalified customers, only because I want to provide the best suitable homes for you and your income.  You will be preapproved for a certain price and then it is up to you and the lender of your choice to factor in monthly bills and what mortgage payment will work best for you.

Choose a lender who you feel comfortable with and trust to give you the best services that include:

  • Checking your credit and getting you your best possible interest rate available


  • Discussing what you can afford in monthly mortgage payments.


  • Educating you on the best mortgage program to meet your needs.


  • Helping you determine what your monthly mortgage payment will be, approximately.


  • Identifying closing costs and down payments.


  • Determining the best price range when shopping for your home.


  • Providing you with evidence in the form of a bank prequalification letter that will aide in the process of putting an offer in on a home. 

  • Helping you determine the steps you need to take to prepare yourself for purchase, which includes

    • Paying down credit cards or other debt

    • How to correct inaccurate credit report entries

    • Gathering your funds

    • How to go about saving your money for the down payment and the closing costs.

Step  3– Start  Looking at Homes 

I will start sending you homes determined by your needs and wants list, desired location(s) and the appropriate price range determined by you and your mortgage lender. We will then schedule appointments to view the homes you want to see and I will help you compare the ones you like! 
Step 4 – Determine which Home to Make and Offer On

With my help we will identify


  •  Utility bill information and amounts 

  •  Property taxes, and if there are any, special assessment costs

  •  An appropriate offer price

I will also advise you, before we determine an offer price, to contact your loan officer to calculate the total costs and also to contact your insurance agent for a quote.  We are doing this to give you the closest possible estimate of all your expenses when living in your new home.



Step 5– Make The Offer!

 I will:

  • Help you present your offer in contract for


  • Negotiate on behalf of you.


  • Guide and manage the entire process of the home buying process for you.


Step 6 – Negotiation and Accepting of Contract


At this phase of the home buying process, I will complete all forms with you, handle all phone calls back and forth between the listing agent and I dealing with negotiation on price and terms of contract.

I will also advise you, if you have not already to hire a real estate attorney. 

Step 7– Offer is Accepted! Now What?

  • I will deliver contract to your real estate attorney.


  • You will finish the full loan application process with your lender. 


  • We will schedule a home inspection



Step 9 – Home Inspection


  • Schedule a home inspection with a reputable area home inspector


  • Attend home inspection if possible to hear and see inspection findings in real time


  • Review home inspection results with your realtor


TIP:  This is a great time to measure for furniture, take dozens of photos, and check out details that you may have   forgotten or wondered about.  This is normally the last time you will have access to your new home prior to closing.

Step 9 – More Negotiating on Behalf of Results of Home Inspection

Depending on the report we receive from the home inspector we will determine the list of desired repairs and how they will be handled.  We will then:


  • Provide the attorney with our repairs and requests


  • Wait for sellers response.


Step 10- Appraisal

Your lender will order an appraisal of the property, this helps the bank determine the final amount it will loan to you for the home. About one to two weeks after the initial inspection you will be given the appraisal report.

TIP:  The appraisal is at your expense.  If there is enough time before closing, the appraisal will be ordered after the home inspection issues are resolved.

Step 11 – Mortgage Commitment Approval


"By now your lender has had a few weeks to run credit and background checks and verify your employment and funds for closing.  You will receive an initial approval for your mortgage once an underwriter has reviewed your mortgage application.  This approval will normally be subject to a couple of clarifications regarding your credit, income and funds on deposit.  It may also be subject to the complete appraisal report.  Work with your loan originator or their processing staff to provide what they need for full approval."  Kent Cochrum, Avenue Mortage

"TIP:  Always provide full statements (all pages), and try to be as rapid and thorough as possible with your responses.  Most requests are non-negotiable and must be satisfied in order to receive full loan approval.  Do your best to maintain a positive attitude at this point and cheerfully provide whatever is needed – the mortgage staff will appreciate your positive approach and will most likely provide a higher level of service than they would to those who are less cooperative." Kent Cochrum, Avenue Mortagae

Step 13 – Schedule Closing


Your initial contract will have an agreed upon closing date.  The time and location will be determined at this point.


Step 14 – Finalize and Review Closing Details

Three days prior to your closing date you will receive a closing disclosure from your lender.  This disclosure will list all of your closing costs, call your lender to go over the information given and to determine the final amount you will bring to the closing table.  You will need to make arrangements with your title company to show proof of funds to make sure closing goes as soon as possible.


Step 15 – Final Walk through 


The final walk through is usually scheduled immediately before closing to make sure the home is in the same condition it was when the contract was finalized.


Step 16 – Go to Closing, Move in, and Celebrate!!!


At closing, you will review and sign all necessary paperwork required to finalize your purchase and mortgage.  This will take at least 1 to 2 hours.  After all paperwork is complete you are now the proud owner of your new home! Congratulations! It is time to move in! 


If you are interested in discussing a possible purchase or refinance, give Kent a call at (630) 330-1334 or send an email to  
Kent Cochrum, Senior Loan Originator
NMLS #194755
(630) 330-1334  mobile
(630) 634-5136  office
Avenue Mortgage, a division of CIBM Bank, member FDIC
                      330 S. Naperville Road, Wheaton, IL  60187                       


© 2016 Kent Cochrum  All rights reserved.