Purchasing a home is an exciting and sometimes terrifying time. We have compiled a list of resources for you to use when considering buying a home, actively in the process of buying, and when you are under contract.
Check out our frequently asked questions below, along with articles we have gathered to help you prepare to put your house on the market. If you have a questions that we haven’t answered, need help implementing suggestions, or just want to bounce ideas around, please reach out to us!
Common Homebuyer Questions
The first thing to do when looking to purchase a house is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. This is helpful in determining your price range, programs available, down payment necessary, and most importantly shows potential sellers you are qualified and serious about buying. If you prefer to meet with the Sly team first and walk through the process of buying, we welcome the opportunity!
Need a lender referral? Tony and Angie can share preferred lenders!
From accepted Purchase Agreement to closing day (possession) it takes an average of 45 days.
The professional fee earned by your Realtor is generated by the seller of the house you purchase. That fee is shared between the listing agent and your realtor/buying agent.
Our parents had us thinking 20% was required. IT IS NOT! Some clients have purchased homes through grant programs with little or no money down. How much will you need? It’s a great question for a lender! There are different loan types and programs, each with specific requirements. We suggest having phone interviews with a few lenders to learn more about what fits your situation.
A FICO score of 620 or higher is required for most loan programs. It is not uncommon to find lenders who will approve buyers with scores less than that, however a higher down payment may be needed. Borrowers with higher credit scores represent less risk to the lender and may not need as much for down payment.
Earnest money is a payment sent with an official offer to represent to the seller your genuine and serious about purchasing the house. We have seen earnest for $500 and in some situations in the thousands. Rest assured, the Sly team will guide you every step of the way. When your offer is accepted, earnest money will be deposited and credited to the purchase of your new home.
This number can vary and the timeframe should be stipulated in the offer.
Yes, absolutely! Many loan programs, like the FHA and VA loans, require a home inspection. However, even if it is not required by your lender it is still highly recommended because they can reveal easily overlooked defects in the house. A good home inspection will bring peace of mind to one of the largest investments of your lifetime.
We highly recommend it! This is an opportunity to assure nothing has changed in the house since the offer was accepted. It is also the prime time to confirm all repairs and replacements agreed upon on the Inspection Addendum were complete.
Moving Check Lists
Things To Do 6-8 Weeks Before Moving
– Begin to declutter and purge
– Begin sorting what will go to the new home
– Sell or donate items which will not be going
– Schedule a mover
– Get movers insurance
– Make arrangements for work and/childcare
Things To Do 4-6 Weeks Before Moving
– Notify utilities and other services (gas, electric, cable, garbage, newspaper)
– Change your address
– Get packing supplies
– Organize important documents and valuables
– Begin packing what can be
Things To Do Two Weeks Before Moving
– Confirm moving arrangements
– Pack an essentials box
– Change address at post office and forward mail to new address
Things To Do One Week Before Moving
– Refill any prescriptions
– Donate or toss unopened food items
– Make small repairs
– Deep cleaning
Things To Do On Moving Day
– Protect your floors and carpet while moving
– Supervise the movers
– Do a final walkthrough
– Pay and tip your movers
– Unpack your essentials box
– Leave instructions for new owners
– Leave out any instruction manuals or warranty information
Things To Do After Moving
– Make sure your utilities are working
– Begin the unpacking process
– Meet your new neighbors
– Get to know your new neighborhood
– Confirm your new address (employer, bank, doctor, DMV, creditors, schools)
Local Services, Utilities and Schools
CHANGE OF ADDRESS
Altoona Post Office:515-967-5374
Ankeny Post Office: 515-963-8387
Beaverdale Post Office: 515-255-8593
Bondurant Post Office: 515-967-2266
Carlisle Post Office: 515-989-3352
Clive Post Office: 515-276-5894
Des Moines Post Office: 515-283-7714
Dallas Center Post Office: 515-992-3320
Grimes Post Office: 515-986-3460
Johnston Post Office: 515-334-0186
Norwalk Post Office: 515-981-5871
Pleasant Hill Post Office: 515-299-9275
Polk City Post Office: 515-984-6137
Urbandale Post Office: 515-334-5683
Waukee Post Office: 515-987-5409
West Des Moines Post Office: 515-255-6471
Windsor Heights Post Office: 515-279-4225
Century Link: 800-244-1111
Ankeny Sanitation: 515-964-5229
Ankeny Water Works: 515.963.3565
Black Hills Energy: 800-890-5554
Dallas Center Utilities: 515-992-3725
Des Moines Water Works: 515.283.8700
Grimes Water Department: 515-986-3036
Metro Waste Authority: 515-244-0021
Mid American Energy: 888-427-5632
Norwalk Utilities: 515-981-0228
Urbandale Water Utility: 515-278-3940
Waste Management: 515-265-5267
Waukee Water Department: 515-978-7920
Ankeny Community Schools: 515-965-9600
Bondurant-Farrar Community School District: 515-967-7819
Carlisle Community Schools: 515-989-3589
Dallas Center-Grimes School District: 515-992-3866
Des Moines Christian School: 515-252-2480
Des Moines Public Schools: 515-242-7911
Dowling Catholic High School: 515-225-3000
Johnston Community School District: 515-278-0470
North Polk Community School District: 515-984-3400
Norwalk Community School District: 515-981-0676
Southeast Polk Community School District: 515-967-4294
Urbandale Community School District: 515-457-5000
Waukee School District: 515-987-5161
West Des Moines Community Schools: 515-633-5000
DART Bus Services: 515-283-8100
Iowa One Call– Before you Dig: 800-292-8989