Homes for Sale in Lakewood Ohio

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Properties in Lakewood FAQs


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What is the best advice and way to start looking into buying a Lakewood house for a first-time home buyer?



Buying a home for the first time can be both exciting and stressful. The great news is that there are precautionary methods you can utilize to better relax during this thrilling time in your life. It all starts with a checklist that you can tick off as you go through the home-buying process. Here’s our recommended checklist for home buyers who are venturing into the real estate world for the first time.


1. Determine a Budget

House hunting can be a fantastic thrill. From front porch aesthetics and granite countertops to bathroom tiles and more, one can no doubt get lost in the whirlwind of finding your favorite space to call home. However, there are several things that need to happen before you can actually buy a home.


Step one is determining a price range and establishing a partnership to secure the funds needed to buy your desired new home. This is where it is crucial to determine what you can truly afford in terms of monthly payments combined with the amount you can put down on a house. If you already have the funds, then you can worry less about this step. But most people will need to borrow money from a bank to be able to afford the house they would like to purchase.


Within this step, a bank will usually tell you what you are pre-approved for based on a few key aspects of your financial situation and employment status. This predetermined number can help guide you on your search for a new home. Keep in mind that this number is not quite set in stone and can change depending on a few things. For example, if you have switched jobs recently, this could affect the amount you were originally pre-qualified for.


Estimated Mortgage Payments

Here are the three elements you can expect when it comes to what your mortgage amount will consist of:

    • Principle – This is the amount required in order to pay off your debt.
    • Interest – This is the interest rate amount set by the bank so that they can make money off of the amount loaned.
    • Escrow Account Certification – This is a small amount taken from your mortgage that is placed into an account monitored by your bank to cover property taxes and homeowner’s insurance.


2. Find a Real Estate Agent

After you have a good idea of how much you can and are willing to spend, it is highly suggested that you find an agent. As someone who works in the real estate field every day, the process of purchasing your home will go much more smoothly than bracing the workload alone. Find your ideal realtor by taking into account the area you want to live in, and asking a ton of questions. Your realtor should be open to sharing information and advice on your potential purchase.


3. Make an Offer

Once you have house hopped and found your dream home, you will want to make an offer. You will provide a price you are willing to pay plus any contingencies you may have. These contingencies can include things like recarpeting the living room, fixing the plumbing, repainting the walls, and other such things that you would like to see done before you move in. Although this seems like a fairly final step, an offer does not guarantee the house is yours.


4. Accept Offer

In the next phase of placing your offer, it will either be accepted or counter offered by the seller. This counteroffer can change things in a few ways including:

    • Offering a higher or lower amount to sell the home for
    • Agreeing to meet some or all contingencies
    • Disagreeing with some or all contingencies


At this point, you can decide whether you can agree to the countered terms laid out by the seller. If you feel it is not worth it to continue, you may back out of your offer. Once you and the seller have come to an agreement, you can check off making an offer when it has been accepted on both sides.


5. Navigate Through Escrow

Huzzah! You are now in escrow. At this point in the home buying process, it is important that you do the following necessary steps:

    • Secure your mortgage – Solidify the amount given to you by the bank by providing all of the essential documentation needed so that they can reach a definite amount.
    • Administer a property inspection – Make an inspection appointment as soon as possible to get a professional opinion on the true state of the property.
    • Address any issues – If anything new arises because of the inspection previously done, now is the time to address them to the current owner. Here is where you may discover problems that could be a make or break.
    • Get homeowner’s insurance – Once you have decided to go through with your purchase, you will need to provide proof to your mortgage lender that you have insurance to cover both yours and their investment. This is usually known as a Certificate of Insurance.


6. Close on Your New Home

Once you have made it out of escrow, you can finally close on your new home. You and the seller can now agree on a date of sale (closing date) and ownership can begin to change hands.


Closing costs are also part of closing and will need to be paid before you can begin to move in. Closing costs consist of a number of things but normally include paying realtors and the title company for their time and effort used to help you find a home, one year’s worth of homeowner’s insurance, and other fees. Once these have been paid successfully, congratulations are in order! You are officially a brand new homeowner.


Source: A Complete Checklist for First Time Home Buyers | Shawn Manderscheid (


I'm looking to buy my first home. What should I look for?



    • No mold or mildew
    • A good foundation
    • A newer roof seven years or less, OR the ability to replace the roof right away (no roof leaks or water damage and mold growth from previous leaks).
    • You can do an online search on the address to make sure there hasn’t been fire, flood, drug house (meth needs remediation or could affect the health of future residents). Also there are sites that show all of this plus whether the area has had environmental concerns (contamination, dumping, air quality).
    • Cosmetically and for resale/investment value, even if you plan on living in it the rest of your life, location is key, as is layout and “good bones.”
    • Again, location. If you commute a long way to work, especially during heavy traffic times, you may find that it isn’t as easy as you anticipated. Use Waze or any other good GPS app to determine this, and actually try it out once or twice. Same with proximity to stores, gyms, schools, whatever is important to you and your family. A great school district, even if you don’t have children, will also increase value.
    • Be willing to negotiate and look at many (maybe twenty or more homes). Many a buyer has become emotional about a home, offered too much and then it was like that eighties movie with Tom Hanks (The Money Pit).
    • I can’t stress enough about mold or mildew. Take someone who is like Toucan Sam with you when you look, and follow your nose. I have had two houses inspected in Maine and two in Alabama. Both states are high humidity and I noticed in homes that had wallpaper, sometimes it would show buckling or peeling because they didn’t always run the a/c, especially once they moved out. One home I glanced at and ran back out, I could see the paper peeling back on kitchen walls and black mold underneath. If you are able to peek under the wall to wall, carpet, same thing.
    • Know what is important to you…what are wants versus necessities that you won’t compromise on (size of home, number of bedrooms, how many levels, size of yard and what the adjoining neighbors are like, and how far they are from your home). Same with being in deed restricted or home owner associations. Those not only cost but depending on rules they can severely limit how you keep your yard, your exterior and sometimes even your interior. Some allow pets, others do only with restrictions on size, breed or number. Others are pet (or even child) free. It’s like that here a lot in Florida and I’ll take my freedom over paying for someone to tell me what to do in my own home (even if it means giving up having security or a public pool). On that note, I can’t do a condo because I know smoke or noise from adjoining walls would be too much for me. Everyone’s different.
    • Get a realtor. I wasn’t going to because I thought it would save money. But she only makes money on us during closing, if and when we buy. In some states, the realtor can have a dual relationship (Maine was like that). In others they cannot and are working just for you.



TIPS...Lakewood Ohio Waterfront Homes for Sale 


Tips for Hiring a Home Inspector

Decide upon a home inspector who has years of expertise and knowledge. Do not forget to inquire about good references. One should never look for a financial advantage concerning having a qualified inspector on such a large investment. Your upfront investment will save you money in the long run. Problems can be negotiated with the seller before the sale provided you have someone in your corner.

Ask companions and colleagues for suggestions. Request an experienced home inspector who is known for being intensive and thorough.

Look into somebody acquainted with your sort of home and the issues you need to investigate. Be certain your inspector has years of experience with home properties, not business properties, and any issues you expect to find. For instance, in case you're worried about a home's design, consider employing an expert designer or engineer who can additionally offer home reviews. Likewise, be certain you're in agreement with the inspector on items that need to be reviewed such as foundational issues, roofing, and plumbing.

 Look into whether the inspector has a place with an expert affiliation, like the American Society of Home Inspectors, the National Society of Professional Engineers, or the Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors. Participation in proficient affiliations may offer added affirmation of an auditor's capabilities and preparation. 

Ensure your home inspector is working to your advantage. For instance, many home inspectors depend on references from realtors for their business. This implies that the auditor might be keener on keeping up that relationship than giving you a careful review. They might be less inclined to distinguish significant fix gives that hold up the offer of your home. Additionally, be wary about recruiting a home inspector who is hoping to get contracting work from you. 

Be available during the inspection. Most inspectors will permit you to visit the home with them and pose inquiries during or after the investigation. The review can sometimes last somewhere in the range of two to five hours - contingent upon the size of the house. 

Ask the inspector how long it will take to get a copy once the inspection has been completed. Review your home investigation report completely and create of list of items that are of concern. Understand that the home examination report records the state of the home, the two positives and negatives. This will assist you with deciding your future consumptions for fixes and support. The report will contain helpful data that fills in as a kind of perspective for you later on. 

Check to review whether the home inspection company is a BBB Accredited Business and read the reviews. Ensure the individual inspector is responsive and courteous regarding any contentious issues that may arise. Discover home auditors close to you in the BBB Directory.

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