These are all great answers. I agree that as a general rule you should plan on 4-6 weeks from the time of offer to the transfer of title. Some other factors can be contingencies such as " Subject to seller finding suitable housing" or any repairs that you may want completed before transfer. Usually, especially in this market, these items can be negotiated so as to keep to a reasonable timetable.
As Mr. Cox has stated, your Agent will guide you through the process. If you are not working with a Buyer's Agent I highly suggest you find one. They will help you find a home fast, advise you of its TRUE VALUE, assure that all the i's are dotted and t's are crossed and all at no charge to you!!! The Seller pays.
Keller Williams Realty of Newport
It can vary greatly. Not as much on the mortgage side as long as you have your paperwork together and can easily clear all of their requirements. The unknown side can often be the other stuff. For example if a title issue comes up where an old mortgage was not properly discharged it can take a couple of extra weeks to clear all of that. All in all, I agree with Sarah that a 30-45 day window should be sufficient assuming not a short sale. Your buyer agent should be working with you to make sure that you are comfortable with the timeline that you are putting forward and that it is realistic.
Hope that helps, Happy Hunting,
It's very important to get a pre-approval (not pre-qualified) before you start looking. A pre-qualification is simply a letter issued to a borrower who is interested in purchasing a home. A pre-approval is a level above a pre-qualification letter. A pre-approval includes the verification of employment, credit history, down payment, etc.
Once this information is validated, the mortgage application is submitted to a credit officer (underwriter) to make a final decision. Once approved by an underwriter, a pre-approval certificate (commitment to lend) is issued. This commitment to lend allows for borrowers to close very quickly once a home is found. When a borrower has a commitment from a lender, it can drastically improve the negotiation of a sales price with a seller since it is as close as a borrower can get to actually having the cash in hand to pay for a home.
Best of luck!
Total Mortgage Services
As a buyer, you can assist the process by having your pre-approval (not just pre-qualification) ready. I have seen buyers waste weeks trying to find all the documentation that their lender requires.