When looking to buy or invest in Real Estate in South Carolina, Columbia SC has many different options that make it so attractive to many different types of buyers. Whether you are looking to purchase as a first time home buyer in an affordable area, a move up buyer who has outgrown their starter home, or looking for a second home on Lake Murray, Columbia SC and the midlands area has so much to offer. The price of property remained affordable through the huge growth spurt that the rest of the United States experienced through beginning and middle of the 2000's. Now with the market hitting the bottom and starting to push back up, Columbia is rated not only one of the top cities in the US to retire, but the Realtor Organization also just rated Columbia SC one of the top ten deal gainers due to growth of jobs and relocation coming into the area. To start your home search feel free to search the Columbia and Lexington MLS or call Eric Simons @ 803-629-4446 (Eric@RoyallSimons.com).
We have buyers agents that specialize in helping buyers purchase resales, foreclosures, short sales, estate sales and new construction throughout the midlands. Our main focus is on educating and protecting the homebuyer not only with the purchase side of their home , but also guiding them through the lending, inspection, and appraisal aspect of the purchase. Our goal is making sure you are protected step by step with some of the industries most respected partners. As a real estate consultant, our passion is to make your home buying experience stressless and enjoyable while improving your financial situation through buying real estate. For a free list of preferred partners or industry experts that our clients have used and loved please contact Eric Simons @ 803-629-4446 or Eric@RoyallSimons.com.
The first step in purchasing your home is understanding Buyer Agency Law in SC and getting into an agency agreement with a Realtor. Most buyers feel they should find a list of homes or area before consulting a real estate agent. However, when entering into an exclusive right to buy contract first, you will get more services and be protected from the start. When becoming a client of a real estate firm you can expect to receive Obedience, Loyalty, Disclosure, Confidentiality, Accounting and Reasonable care and skill. The real estate professional will also advise, give opinion/consult and negotiate on your behalf. There are also different types of agency when entering into an agreement and purchasing real estate. First, there is Single Agency. Single agency is when your Realtor is representing you and you only. In this scenario, they can give you 100% opinion and the 6 services above without being unbiased. The second type of agency is Disclosed Dual Agency. In this scenario, your Realtor or brokerage represents both you and the seller. The main thing to know is your agent or brokerage representing you can't advocate on behalf of you over the seller. They are more like the referee in this scenario because they can't give an opinion on price negotiation, terms or factors motivating the seller to sell. You will not get 100% representation because it would be considered unbiased to one side or the other. The last type of agency is Designated Dual Agency. This is when your real estate professional and the seller's agent are from the same brokerage. Your Realtor can 100% present you and promote your best interest including negotiating price, terms, etc. The Broker In Charge would remain a dual agent in this case. In both Disclosed Dual Agency and Designated Dual Agency, a separate addendum to the contract will have to be completed to move forward with the sale of the property.
There are many different types of loan options depending for purchasing your new home. There are 100% mortgages for first time home buyers but not many lenders offer this product anymore. There are also many low down payment mortgages as well. Sometimes grants from the city or county can be used as down payment assistance. There are also conventional loan products that have lower closing costs and monthly lower monthly payments but higher down payments that range from 3% up to 20%. It's extremely important that your Realtor understands all the different types of financing because some types of homes don't allow all types of financing and some areas have special financing due to being rural or even being considered revitalized areas.The most important thing to remember is to not get frustrated with the lending process. There is the right loan product available for each type of purchaser. Some loan products have different regulations that might fit your situation whether it's a lower credit score or not having a large number of reserves. We make sure we are 100% educated on all the different loan products that are available. If you would like a full list of lending instituations and banks please contact Eric Simons @803-629-4446 or Eric@RoyallSimons.com.
The most popular loan product is FHA financing. You will typically get the best interest rate and low down payment (3.5%) when using an FHA product. However sometimes this type of loan can be more expensive to close and your monthly payment will be higher due to mortgage insurance premiums. Mortgage Insurance protects the lender if the purchaser was to foreclose on the home. There is no advantage to the buyer to have mortgage insurance. One other thing that makes FHA attractive is a family member or employer can gift the down payment to purchaser and it can be used as their down payment.
One of the best loan products available but is exclusive to Military and Military Veterans is the VA Loan. This loan has the lowest interest rate available, has no mortgae insurance, and there is no downpayment. The purchaser does have to put earnest money (like all loans) but many times can get their earnest money back at closing.
This is the hardest product to find and it has very strict regulations. The interst rate is a little higher, but there is no mortgage insurance. Since there is no mortage insurance, the monthly payment is lower. Some grants can still be used with this product and the purchaser can still put money down if they want to. There are usually income limits and a higher minimum credit scores for this product. For more specific info on this loan please contact Eric Simons @803-629-4446 or Eric@RoyallSimons.com.
Rural financing is another 100% loan product that is available in some parts of the midlands. These products require a credit score a little higher than FHA, but it has only a small amount of mortgage insurance. This product is perfect for first time home buyers and some move up buyers since there are income limits on the loan. To get more information and a map of the USDA Eligibility please let us know.
Conventional loans require a higher credit score than FHA. These types of loans are cheaper to close and typically will give you lower monthly payments because they usually dont require mortgage insurance or if they do they will allow you to pay your mortgage insurance up front. Interest rates are fraction higher than FHA/VA and require 3% to 20% down. If you are an investor, looking to buy a second home, or buying a condo that doesnt allow FHA financing, Conventional financing is usually your only option.
There are quite a few different types of renovation loans available throughout the Columbia Area. FHA has a 203k renovation product. It has all the same criteria, down payment and regulations as the normal fha loan. The only difference is the loan takes a little longer to close and they require a license contractor to make repairs. The repairs and sales price are combined to come up with the loan amount. Another newer loan product is the Fannie Mae Home Path Loan. This product is exclusively for Fannie Mae foreclosures. Its available for primary residence, 2nd home and investors. The loan offers low down payment, no mortgage insurance, no appraisal, and will loan up to 35k for repairs/renovations.
Not all new homes need a construction loan, but if you are looking to build on your own land, you will need to seek out this type of financing. This a conventional product but with the housing market collapse a few years back, there are fewer lenders that offer this loan product. In this scenario there are typically two contracts. The first is purchase of the land (if you don't own it already) and the second is the actual build job. After you come to terms and pricing with your builder, an appraisal is ordered to make sure the home will appraise. Most of these types of loans require 20% down. However there are a few lenders that will reduce the down payment based on the appraisal value. We have seen a few instances where a construction loan can be done with no down payment. For a list of lenders who offer this product please contact us.
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