(Closed) How long does it take to buy a house?

posted 6 years ago in Home
Post # 3
Member
2638 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2006

Eh. It REALLY depends. Do you know what area you’re looking in? Do you have specific neighborhoods you like? If your search parameters are lax and wide, it could take a long time. My sister and her boyfriend had no idea what they REALLY wanted and ended up looking at over 120 houses over the course of eight months and ended up spending $150k more than they’d planned. They were on one extreme.

We were on the other. We looked at 9 houses over the course of two or three weeks. The offer was agreed upon within 36 hours, inspection a few days after that, a few more negotiations based on the inspection, and then we had a 120-day close. That is UNREAL. If we’d wanted to, we could’ve been in the house about 40 days after we started looking with a realtor. Granted, that was because the sellers already had another house and we didn’t have one to sell. It depends, of course, but you don’t need as much time as it seems.

 

Post # 4
Member
883 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

It took us about a month from searching to closing day.

Post # 5
Member
240 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

Fiance and I started looking at houses in September. We found one we REALLY liked and went back to look at it a second time on Oct. 31. (This was AFTER we got pre-approval from the bank) We put in an offer that day and negotiated price. Our bank told us that the lenders are all behind on writing up the loans so it drew out our closing process, but we closed on Dec. 16th and moved that weekend.

I don’t know if that helps, but I know it varies based on if the house is empty etc. We bought a brand new house so it was already vacant. Just had to have all the inspections etc. done.

Post # 6
Member
39 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: August 2012

We looked starting in January (at a bunch of houses) and ended up finding one to make an offer on in April.  Ended up closing end of June.  It can depend on the seller, too, as to whether they are also looking for a house (might have a longer time in escrow) or not.  Would recommend starting a little early, since it’s easier to end a lease early than having to re-sign for another year if you miss the deadline.

Post # 7
Member
1572 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

It really depends on your area I would think.

For me I’m a very emotional buyer. So if I went out looking for a house before we were able to buy I would be afriad of becoming attached to that house and then obviously not being able to get it.

The first place Fiance & I got, we looked for about 2 months (very casual though) and found one and closed on day 45 from when we put the offer in. This past year we found a house, out an offer on it in April, then again in September. The offer was accepted in September but we weren’t able to close until November b/c our loan took so long (rehab loan to repair the house).

You may want to look a bit online now and go for a few drives and scope out what neighborhoods you would like to live in for when the time comes. If you aren’t ready to buy for another 1.5 years I would hold off on seriously looking unless you can buy when you find a place you love, b/c most likely it won’t be there in a year.

Post # 8
Member
6661 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2010

It totally depends. Springtime is a good time to house hunt since there is more inventory, but that probably won’t give you enough time from having your offer accepted to closing if your lease is up in June. Also, you have to consider things like the sellers circumstances – they might hold up closing because they’re waiting on another deal to go through in addition to selling their house.

I could answer 1 year, 5 months or 2 months and be telling the truth with all three answers, haha! One year ago we started our search and entered into contract immediately, 3 months later it fell through. We took a break from searching then in October made an offer on another apartment and closed exactly 2 months later. So if everything is aligned perfectly, it could take you as little as 2 months, but this is a pretty volatile market so don’t count on it. I would talk to your landlord and ask what the policy is for switching to month to month or getting a short term lease extension just in case. That’s what I did before moving into my current apartment and I’m so glad because I ended up breaking it after 6 months! At least we knew it could be done and what the penalties would be so we didn’t have to stress about that while house hunting.

Post # 9
Member
6824 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

It depends as PP said, but also depends if the house you are buying is a Short Sale/foreclosure or outright just for sale . If short sale it can take months and months for the bank to cooperate.  Even then the sale can fall through. It also depends on the sellers how quickly they want to move on selling said house. 

It took us about 4 months from when we started to look to when we actually closed on our house

Post # 10
Member
14424 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

We looked at houses for about 5-6 months, going to open houses every other weekend or so and some random appointments.  From offer to closing was exactly 4 weeks and we moved in the day after closing since the lease was up 2 days after that.

I would not start looking 18 months out.  I’d wait until about 6-8 months from when you want to move.  The market can change a bit this far out and the inventory will probably be completely different.  I dont think there’s point in hypotheitcal compromises on a home when you’re not ready to make a move on it.  I’d just look online and get an idea of size/price, but wouldnt waste any time visiting homes. 

Post # 12
Member
579 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

The length of time depends on many factors that only you know. My first house (new construction) ibought in end of febuary 2004 and i closed Beginning of August and moved in the middle of August. Our current home we purchased June 2009 and delayed our closing till end of May. We moved in a week after in June 2010.This house was also nee construction. We probably signed a month after seriously looking around at resales and different builders. Resale you need to jump on putting offers on and generally have a 3 month closing time frame. While new homes can range from 4 months to 1 year to even 2. Depends what stage the house is at. Also, keep in mind Deposits are much lower for resales. While new homes generally require 20-30k paid in installments over a few month timeframe.

Post # 13
Member
14424 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

@hisgoosiegirl: I think you’d find out very fast what you like or not.  Most houses, I knew within a minute of walking in if I would be interested.  Many times I walked in the front door and just wanted to turn around,and only stayed since we were greated by the realtor.  I guess it depends on your area too and if there are a lot of options.  For me, it didnt matter what I really liked or wanted in a house… in my price range for where I wanted to be, it more about what I could live with than what can I have that I want… because honestly, none of it was ideal or something i absolutely loved since the homes are all pretty old.  I just think that you are at the mercy of whats on the market at the time.   And when you start seriously looking you’ll see very quickly which particular homes will be appealing and which you wont care for at all and that knowing ahead of time what sort of space, or flooring, wont matter.  Of course if you are not comfortable with waiting and want to start very early just to get a idea of the type of homes in area, there’s nothing wrong with that too. 🙂

Post # 14
Member
2893 posts
Sugar bee

It took us almost a year. Started looking summer 2010, waited for costs to drop, started putting in offers winter 2010. But the area we wanted to live in is expensive and brutally competative when it comes to quality housing at a reasonable price point. Like, if you didn’t have the best offer in within 24 hrs of it hitting the market there was a chance that you wouldn’t have a chance. We landed our house June 2011. Hit the market and we had an official offer in within 24hrs and got it. I think our offer was in in April and we closed in June.

It will really depend on what’s available in your area and how competative it is. There were very few homes we were willing to buy. I would give yourself at least 2 months for closing alone. Or find out if you can go month to month on your current lease in the event you don’t close in time.

Post # 15
Member
7312 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011 - Bed & Breakfast

We were in the market for 5 months last year, went under contract at the 4 month mark, and then pulled out due to the results of the home inspection. We’re dipping our toes back in the market now, and hope to be totally done and moved in by June 30th. We’ll see how it goes!

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