How long does it usually take to complete a purchase of a home. ie. from finding a home to moving in. Want to move in in Aug. Thanks!

Asked by Ishmael Lamptey, 77073 Fri Mar 1, 2013

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, ,
Tue Mar 12, 2013
Our recommendation for best success is to prequalify yourself as early as now for your mortgage lending needs. Then locate a qualified Realtor in the market you are wanting to live. Once you find your home, we are able to qualify you with a 20 day purchase guarantee from contract to closing. Happy to discuss any needs you may have. 1.855.724.8724 or Only preferred lender of The Dave Ramsey Show.
0 votes
Don Groff, Agent, Austin, TX
Mon Mar 11, 2013
That is really difficult or impossible to answer. Searching for a home can be a fast process or it can drag on depending on how long it takes and how picky you may be. It is also becoming a hot market so it's becoming necessary to move fast when something you want becomes available.

Once you find a home the typical closing process takes anywhere from 30 to 45 days from the time you execute a contact. In your case you will want to start receiving listings even though you are a little ways off from your anticipated move date. Take the time to get to know the areas and have your agent set up searches for you so you can see everything that comes on the market that meets your criteria.

Hope this helps.

Don Groff
REALTOR® & Mortgage Broker
Austin Real Estate Pros | 360 Lending Group
office: 512.669.5599 mobile: 512.633.4157
websites: |
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Mark McNitt, Agent, Houston, TX
Sun Mar 3, 2013

2 part question. First, how long to "find" a home. That can very greatly from 1 day to 2 years. Many buyers that are relocating to Houston for the first time feel they might need a bit more time to learn the communities, drive times to work, explore school options, etc. So they might lease for 6 months to a year while looking. If already in town, it could take a month or two. Much of it depends on your Realtors ability to educate you quickly and how willing you are to go forward. I would say on average we can show 15-35 homes and take 6 weeks to find that ideal home to make an offer.

Now, once you have made the offer the pending process typically takes 30-45 days to process the loan. Some loans like FHA or VA could take 60 days. Always a good to plan for things not going exactly to plan and budget a week or two between closing and moving from your current location.

If your moving in August (and it is early March now), this would be the time to interview a few Realtors to see which one your comfortable to work with, discuss how he/she gets paid and then set up a web portal to start viewing homes on-line. Also now would be a great time to confirm your could get a loan in the price range you want to be in. Between now and July 1st, your driving through areas and researching on-line with help from your agent. July 1st start looking at homes and narrowing down to top 3.

Hope that helps. We work with many buyers. If you could use some help, please feel free to email or call us.

Mark McNitt
m 832-567-4357
Bernstein Realty, Inc.
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Persis Behra…, Agent, Cinco Ranch, TX
Sun Mar 3, 2013
Hello Ishmael,

Good job trying to figure out the timeline for your purchase. I've worked with buyers who know what they are looking for and can decide within a few days after seeing a specific handful of homes. I've also worked with buyers who need a lot of time and patience to "feel right" about their home. In any instance, you should keep a 45 day time frame, because there is a possibility of an issue coming up at the last minute, which is not to say you cannot close - it just takes extra days to resolve that. If you are ready, there is no problem selecting a 30 day closing date, however, just keep in mind that you may have to make a shift. It is possible that the seller may negotiate the closing date a little further than what you might want.

Remember that the transaction process involves not just you and the sellers. The mortgage company has to coordinate with their underwriters and appraisers, and the Title Company has to coordinate this with the lender, and both parties. Inspections, Surveys, Appraisals, HOA, Home Warranties, are just a few items that tie all of this together. Your agent will help coordinate all of this, but you should be aware constantly to make the process smoother.

All of the above is for regular resale transaction. If a foreclosure or short sale is involved, that changes the timeline. If you are buying a new home, give it 4 to 5 months now.

I like to educate my clients on the transaction process to give them a good idea of what they will be involved with, so they don't feel stumped unnecessarily.

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Bruce Lynn, Agent, Coppell, TX
Sun Mar 3, 2013
Contract to close is typically about 30days.
Sometimes we can speed it up, but has to work more or less perfectly...all moving parts and there are several.
45 days is nice....contract to close.
So typically I would say back up about another 45 days to start the home search.

Two things you can do now.....get prequalified, so you know if you can get a loan and see if there are any breaks you can manage between now and then, like saving more money for a bigger down payment or doing things to improve your credit score.

You can start looking at neighborhoods now...and information about neighborhoods that is important to you like school information, drive times, etc.

We also need to get you a great buyer's agent. Let me know if you need a great agent recommendation.
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, ,
Sat Mar 2, 2013
I ask my realtors to put 30 days on their contracts. That is an easy number to hit for FHA, VA & Conventional. USDA is taking longer but only because of the USDA office.

Tom Burris
Mortgage Banker
(214) 763-4629 cell/text/nights/weekends(Really!!)
Lending all across the entire Great State of Texas!!
NMLS# 335055
Search Dallas area MLS for FREE. No registration =>
0 votes
Arnold Richie, Agent, Houston, TX
Sat Mar 2, 2013
Let's keep it simple. once you have found a home you want, the "offer" and "acceptance" of a contract (usually a negotiation) can be accomplished in 1 - 5 days on average. This would not be the case with a bank owned or short sale!

IF you have all of your proper paper work (paystubs, tax returns, etc.) for the mortgage company, a loan can get done in 3 - 5 weeks.

Hope that helps.

You can contact me for your Real Estate needs at:

Arnold Richie, Realtor®
Terry Burnaman Realtors
0 votes
Jaron Hall, Agent, Houston, TX
Sat Mar 2, 2013

Finding a home can vary for any given Buyer. I have had clients get out and find their home in a day and others that have taken months of looking until they find their home. It really just depends on you. This sounds so juvenile but I always tell clients to write down a list of their top 10 wants/desires in a home. This can be a price range they want to stay in, square footage minimum, wood floors vs. tile, pool or no pool... Etc. Then take that list and narrow it down to the top 5 NEEDS you must have in that home. Chances are, you will not find all 10 things youd like to have in a home.

With that said, if you are looking to move in to your new home in August, you should get started in April or May. From the time you find your home, and put it in contract, typically it takes about 30 days to close. So, you need to find your home in June or July. Happy home shopping!


Jaron W. Hall
Jaron Hall Properties

0 votes
, ,
Fri Mar 1, 2013
Depending on the lender we use and the file, turn times for the whole process right now are between less than 20 days to 30 days. And depending on the complexity of the file, it can go as long as 45 days. If you are shopping for financing, please check us out!

Anna Maria Durr, NMLS 266699, TREC 596662
Codemark Financial
2626 Richmond Ave., Houston, Texas 77098
0 votes
Al Geffon, Agent, Houston, TX
Fri Mar 1, 2013
Ishmael ...

Much depends upon your requirements ... 3-bedroom, 2-bath homes are relatively plentiful, but if you need a larger property (the more bedrooms and baths, the narrower your choices), want a pool, large yard, fireplace, etc. it could take a bit more time. Then, of course, there's the matter of location ... we can change pretty much everything in a home, except where it is. Add in your budget, and we have literally thousands of permutations ... $200,000 will buy you a gorgeous 3000 sq. ft. home in Champions/Tomball, for example, but that same property in Meyerland would run close to $1 million.

If you're looking to move in August, I'd suggest beginning your search in May. The usual time for financing approval is 30-45 days. Assuming you find the home you like in June, the August move-in date would work well.

If I can answer any further questions, or assist in finding that special home for your family, please feel free to contact me. I look forward to hearing from you.

Regards ...

Al Geffon
(713) 213-6350
Web Reference:
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Kevin Sechel…, Agent, Houston, TX
Fri Mar 1, 2013
On average 30 - 45 days from contract. Finding the home could take some time depending on what you are looking for. If you need any assistance feel free to contact me.


Kevin M. Sechelski

Trend Setter Realty

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Vera Gonzalez, Agent, Sterling Heights, MI
Fri Mar 1, 2013

I have had clients who have found a home the first week we were looking and close within 45 days or less. I think on average just a few months. All clients are different.

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