When you’re ready to purchase a new home, it helps to have a thorough timeline of how the process will go -- especially if you’re a first-time homebuyer or you haven’t purchased a home in a long time.
- Check your credit score to determine if it needs help before applying for a home loan.
- Stop applying for new credit lines, especially those issued by department stores. If you already have store-issued credit cards, pay them off and close them.
- If you don't have a major credit card – VISA, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express – apply for one through your bank, and pay the balance in full every month.
- Download home buying apps that survey amenities, local schools, walkability, and more.
- Research the benefits of living in a homeowners association community.
- Research different home builders.
- Research which model home from the preferred home builder fits your future lifestyle.
- If you're a first-time buyer, take a homebuyer education class to become eligible for state-sponsored home buying assistance, including a home loan and down payment assistance.
- Compile past federal income tax records, canceled rent and utility checks, student loan information, and recent paycheck stubs for the mortgage company.
- If you're a first-time buyer, apply for pre-approval on a state-sponsored home loan.
- If you're selling your old home, check on the status of its appraisal, title search, and survey.
- Put your home on the market with a reputable realtor.
- Schedule model home tours in your preferred community.
- Meet with a sales consultant about available home sites for your preferred home, pricing, optional features, the construction process, warranties, available loan programs, and a monthly payment estimate.
- Write the purchase agreement on your new home.
- Schedule a loan application appointment with your loan officer. (Your Ryan Homes sales consultant can help.)
- Call your insurance agent to discuss homeowners insurance, including a bundle with auto.
- Schedule a pre-construction meeting with your sales consultant and the project manager. (For a timeline to Ryan Homes construction, click here.)
- Visit your home site as often as possible.
- Expect a call from the project manager to schedule your new home's pre-drywall tour.
- Gather a binder for insurance paperwork, moving estimates, receipts, alarm codes, and the IRS change-of-address form.
- Create an inventory of everything you own.
- Consider purchasing a storage unit for excess items.
- Get your pet’s paperwork in order by asking for a copy of any important veterinary and adoption documents.
- Ask for a transfer of medical and dental records to be sent to the new healthcare provider, or obtain copies, if applicable.
- Go to the local post office or to www.usps.gov for a change-of-address form.
- Transfer any memberships or subscriptions to your new address.
- Order supplies like Bubble Wrap, cardboard boxes, packing tape, and permanent markers.
- Take measurements of your new home’s doorframes and rooms for furniture.
- Research local moving companies, or call friends and family to discuss their availability.
- Clean your old home to avoid packing toxic cleaning supplies.
- Use perishable and frozen foods.
- Pack up room-by-room, starting with things used most infrequently.
- Decide what to keep and give away, and note any valuable or breakable items that need an appraisal for additional insurance.
- Label boxes with the room and your name.
- Confirm moving date, costs, and contact information with the moving company.
- Make travel arrangements, including any flight or hotel confirmations.
- Schedule a date to turn off cable and Internet, and switch it to your new address.
- Drop off unwanted items at a garage sale, nonprofit, or with friends and family.
- Stock up on prescription medication.
- Forward medical records, if changing health providers.
- Alert banks, credit card companies, your employer, car and health insurance companies, and doctors and dentist’s offices.
- Arrange for a day off work on closing day.
- Confirm closing date with your settlement coordinator.
- Attend the final walkthrough.
- Pack an essentials box with a first-aid kit, toiletries, bedding and towels, phone/laptop chargers, and a change of clothes.
- Visit the mechanic for a tune-up and advice on vehicle care and maintenance, if you’re moving to a new climate.
- Close or transfer bank accounts, if applicable.
- Switch your prescription pick-up destination.
- Backup desktop computer files to a memory stick or hard drive.
- Load electronics in the car to avoid overheating in transfer.
- Arrange for the mover’s payment including tip.
- Confirm arrangements with family and friends and/or moving company.