How Long Does It Take to Buy a House on Average?

How Long Does It Take to Buy a House

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Are you looking into buying a new home? Are you anxious to feel the weight of the front door keys in your hand? Are you wondering: how long does it take to buy a house?

With over 5 million homes sold in the U.S. in 2019, you’re in good company when it comes to home buying. Whether you’re looking for the home of your dreams or investing in rental property, there’s a process for buying real estate.

Keep reading and we’ll walk you through the steps and show you how long it takes, on average, to buy a house.

Prequalifying for a Loan

Before you start your search, it helps to prequalify for a loan. This speeds up the buying process. With a prequalified loan, it’s possible to close on a home in about 30 days.

Prequalifying makes your search better too because you’ll know how much you can spend on a home. The process helps you understand your total costs which include the mortgage, interest, taxes, and insurance.

The Search

It can take between weeks and months to find the home you’re looking for. A knowledgable real estate agent knows which houses for sale meet your criteria. Save yourself some time and go with an experienced agent.

Let the agent know your criteria and dealbreakers. Do you have to have a pool? If there’s no garage is that a dealbreaker?

Once you find the house you want, then comes the next step…

Make an Offer

Your real estate agent makes a formal offer for the house. An experienced agent knows what type of offer to make that will be most likely to result in a purchase.

You don’t always have to offer the full asking price but sometimes it’s necessary. Depending on the time of year and the type of market, sometimes you may have to offer a little over the asking price to get the house.

Offer Accepted

Your offer is accepted, now what? You’ll put down some earnest money and schedule a home inspection. If the home inspection goes well, you’ll continue with the purchase.

Closing the Loan

Even if you’re prequalified, you may need to give the lender additional information. Meanwhile, the lender schedules an appraisal on the home. The lender wants to ensure you’re not paying more for the home than it’s worth.

The lender’s goal is to make sure the home and you are a good risk for them. This process takes anywhere from a month to 45 days.

During this process, you’ll also get title insurance. A company does a background check making sure there are no liens or unidentified investors or owners of the home.

When everything’s done, you’ll do a final walk-through of the home. On closing day, it takes about two hours for signing all the paperwork.

How Long Does It Take to Buy a House?

So, how long does it take to buy a house? As you can see, there’s no precise answer but about 50 days for most people.

Finding the home you want is often the longest part of the process but don’t get frustrated after you’ve made an offer and things feel slow. Let your agent guide you through the process so you don’t miss any important steps.

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