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What Paperwork Do I Need to Buy a House?

Updated: Apr 7

Buying your first house can be an incredibly daunting process. You are faced with many terms that you cannot understand, and you cannot achieve how many necessary steps there are in the process.

However, the process of buying a home is not limited to visiting homes. You also have to look at your credit and funding options find the right realtor, make offers and negotiate, get inspected, get ready to move, and finally close your new home.

Complete home buying checklist

Documents You’ll Need to Buy a House

1. Proof of income and assets

Pay stubs or other proof of employment

Bank statements

Retirement account statements

Tax returns

Gift letters

Form 4506-T (this form gives your lender permission to pull a copy of your taxes from the IRS)

2. Proof of employment.



3. Information on debts

4. Credit report

5. Pre-approval letter

6. Loan Estimate

Estimated interest rate

Monthly mortgage payment

Estimated tax and insurance costs

Estimated closing costs

Potential penalties (including prepayment penalties)

7. Offer letter (your love letter to the sellers)

8. Purchase agreement

Identification details for both buyer and seller

Property description and condition

Purchase price

All contingencies and conditions

The rights and obligations of both parties

All items included in the sale, including appliances

Earnest money deposit amount

Closing costs (itemized according to who’s paying for what)

Closing date

Terms of possession (in other words, when you’ll get the keys to the place)

Signatures of both buyer and seller

9. Seller’s disclosures

10. Earnest money check

11. Home inspection report

The foundation: cracks, crumbling, or gaps

The exterior: siding, gutters, downspouts, and grading

The bathroom fixtures

The appliances, if they’re included in the sale

The roof: estimated age and condition

The plumbing system

HVAC systems

The electrical and gas system

12. The home appraisal

13. Title review

14. Closing Disclosure

Interest rate

Monthly mortgage payment

Tax and insurance costs

Closing costs

Potential penalties (including prepayment penalties)

15. Cashier’s check or wire transfer

16. Homeowners insurance declaration page

17. Property survey

18. Government ID

Documents for real estate agents during the home buying process:

1. Buyer’s agent agreement

2. Purchase agreement

3. Addenda, amendments, riders

4. Sellers disclosure

5. Home inspection report

6. Closing disclosure

7. Title insurance policy

8. Property deed

Being a first-time homebuyer can be daunting but equipping you with the necessary knowledge and resources doesn't have to be. By following the steps described in this article and working with a trusted realtor, you can concentrate on what matters: enjoying your new home.

Use this home buying checklist as a checklist for your entire home buying process: gather your documentation, apply for a mortgage and find your dream home. This is a detailed description of each stage of the process.

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