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The Buying Process
- Consult with a mortgage broker, bank or financial advisor which will help dictate your budget and purchase price and the type of purchase (cash or financed) – which is key for you as you embark on the search for your new home.
- Get pre-approved for a mortgage. Once you have determined your budget, you should obtain a pre-approval letter from a bank or mortgage broker. Your realtor will need this letter to submit with any purchase offers to demonstrate your credibility as a buyer. If it will be a cash purchase, you will also need to show proof of funding as well.
- Secured deposit. Along with confirmation of preapproval or proof of funding, you will also need to secure a 10% deposit of your preapproval amount which will be required when you sign your sales contract.
- Be prepared. Begin your process by having an understanding of the type of home you want, including what features are important to you. Be sure to distinguish between “wants” and “needs.”
- Find an agent that best suits you. Our agents at Keys Bahamas have a variety of strengths and specialties to serve and assist you. It is essential that you choose a real estate professional that you feel comfortable with.
- Search our website for available Bahamas properties and discuss your interest with your chosen estate agent. Come up with your top criteria for your ideal home and make sure to communicate these to your agent.
- View properties with your agent. The Bahamas has an MLS (Multiple Listing Service) system, so your chosen real estate agent can show you any property throughout the Bahamas, regardless of the listing company.
- Upon finding a suitable property. Have your agent prepare a written offer that includes all terms and contingencies, financing stipulations, and a closing date. Your agent will present the offer to the seller and most likely negotiations will take place.
- Have your Bahamas real estate agent recommend competent professionals such as bankers & lawyers.
- When negotiations are complete, your agent or attorney and the sellers attorney will prepare a formal Sales Contract that details every aspect of the transaction from escrow terms to the closing date. A down payment (typically 10% of purchase price) is required upon the signing of the Sales Contract. Your agent will also speak with you regarding closing costs, namely Stamp Tax and legal fees.
- If you are financing the purchase, you will need to finalize your loan application in order to obtain a loan commitment. This will require submission of substantial paperwork including proof of income, assets, and also an appraisal of the desired property. Your agent will be able to recommend a BREA licensed appraiser.
- Once approval is secured, your realtor and attorney will take the required steps to schedule closing. There are often many parties involved in the closing so it typically takes at minimum one to two weeks following approval for closing. In total, the process from accepted offer to close can take between 30 and 90 days. At this point you should also secure homeowner’s insurance for your new home.
- Take a final walk-through of the property with your real estate agent prior to closing.
- At closing, you will be handed your original title documents and keys to your new home!