Buying Guide

Buying a home:
Learn the buying process: affording a home, finding a home, real estate agents, saving tips, closings and more.

About Buying

Why use a realtor?

Kitchens Realty can help you through the entire process of buying a home, starting with the mortgage and continuing right through closing - and beyond. They can help you shop for the best interest rate and terms and, if you wish, suggest mortgage lenders.

Get pre-approved for a loan

Obtain a copy of your credit report and your FICO score and, if necessary, do what you need to do to improve it. The higher your FICO score, the better interest rate you can command. You can get this information online; your Kitchens Realty agent can also help you. Contact several lenders and determine which one will give you the best deal.

Determine your price range and the area(s) you wish to live

By now you should have a good idea of how much home you can afford. This helps you narrow down your home search. You should also begin researching the neighborhoods in which you might want to live. We can help!

Decide which amenities and features you must have - and which ones would be nice but not necessary

How many bedrooms and bathrooms do you want? Would you prefer a newer home or an older one with established landscaping? Are hardwood floors a must? Is an updated kitchen important to you? Walk-in closets? Which features would you be willing to give up if you find the otherwise-perfect home?

Become familiar with the area(s) that might be perfect for you

Right here on, you can find listings that meet your criteria as well as neighborhood data. Identify properties that seem to be fits for you, take an afternoon and go on a driving tour. See what's available in your price range and explore neighborhoods.

Make an offer

When you've identified the home you want to buy, be prepared to help your agent prepare a written offer quickly. Your agent will be familiar with market values and will help you arrive at a price that gives your offer the best chance of being accepted.

At this stage, try not to become emotionally attached to a home. Your offer may not be accepted for any number of reasons. Have backup homes in mind. Be prepared to negotiate through your agent with the sellers.

Once Your Offer Is Accepted:

  • You'll be asked to submit an earnest money deposit that usually isn't refundable.
  • Begin making moving arrangements (select a mover, obtain change-of-address cards, inform friends and relatives).
  • Have the property professionally inspected.
  • If necessary, request repairs.
  • Obtain homeowner's insurance.
  • Contact utilities (phone, water, power, etc.).
  • A few days before closing, stage a walk-through.
  • Obtain a cashier's check for the down payment and closing costs.

At closing:

  • Make sure the terms and conditions of the loan statement are correct.
  • Carefully read everything before you sign.

We have mapped a few great buys for you!

Want to see more properties?
Start Search

Demographic Information

Gadsden-Etowah County

Click the link below to view population statistics, schools, housing market information, labor market information, and much more...

read more

Tools and Calculators

We have provided a few tools to help make your home buying process a little easier.