Most San Francisco buyers are focused on competing for properties. What’s equally important is that you have a firm understanding of what you’ll be responsible for once your offer is accepted and you’re officially “in contract” to purchase your home.
The first week to ten days after “ratification” (seller accepting your offer) are essentially a juggling act. Here are the five things you should be prepared to do:
1. Place your deposit into the escrow account. You’ll need to wire in your good faith deposit (typically 3% of the purchase price). You can also write a check, but wiring is what most buyers do. Make sure that deposit money is liquid and able to be transferred within one to three days of ratification to the title company account associated with your escrow.
2. Submit outstanding financial documentation to your lender. Your lender will invariably need updated financial documentation in order to get your loan package approved. If you’re working within a competitive contingency timeframe (who isn’t?), you’ll want to deliver those docs to the lender within a day or so of the request.
3. Conduct your inspections. You’re going to have to quickly get inspections on the calendar if you didn’t pre-schedule them. This will require some flexibility and probably time away from work during the week. Once you have the inspections and review written reports, you’ll be asked to address the contingency—either removing it, or negotiating any items—as per your contractual deadline.
4. Sign outstanding disclosures. You may have signed a bulk of seller disclosures and reports up front, but there will be more. Be sure you set time aside to review what comes in.
5. Address your appraisal/loan contingencies. Make sure you set time aside to review your appraisal (particularly to make sure that it has come in at value) and respond to any remaining conditions once the lender has reviewed all property and financial documentation. You’re aiming for a big thumbs up from the lender on all aspects of your loan so they begin generating loan documents for you to sign. You will have to ultimately sign and submit the loan/appraisal contingency removal form to the seller to officially clear your contractual obligation.