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Markus Hartwich

Property Search


The Steps To Buy

When you start your Naples Florida property search or Marco Island Florida property search you should know how the general steps look like to acquire a property:


To understand how much you can afford to pay for a home you should meet with a mortgage broker upfront. If you do not have anyone, we can get you in touch with professional companies.


After you know how much of a budget you have available it is always helpful to get a Pre-approval in writing so sellers see that you are a qualified buyer and will be more open to looking at a financing offer.

This way you also know exactly what your top price point is, and you do not waste time looking for a property beyond your range. The Pre-Approval will be submitted with your offer, this way the seller knows at that time already that you have been screened by a mortgage broker/lender.

What do you need & want

Sit down and define what you need and what is a nice-to-have. The first should have a list of features you must have, i.e. the minimum living square footage, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the maximum stories, a pool etc. The latter is your wish list of what you would like to have but what is not a must-have.

Realistically for first-time buyers, you probably will not get everything on your wish list, but it will keep you on track for what you are looking for. While we will make sure to cover your needs, we will still try to get as many wish list features included as possible.

Representation by a buyer’s agent

Make sure you have a buyer’s agent in Naples Florida or a buyer’s agent in Marco Island on board. There are lots of things to pay attention to and you do not want to have surprises pop up during the buying process or after the closing.


Here are the steps to buying your property:

Here are the steps to selling your property:

Step 1:Setting your objective and discussing it with your agent
  • Purpose of your purchase: second / vacation home or investment property?
  • When do you want to buy or move?
  • What is the price range of properties suitable?
  • What are your wanted features and the nice-to-have’s?
  • What is important for you with regards to the neighborhood?
  • Familiarize yourself with mortgage / loan details and requirements.
  • Obtain a pre-approval letter from a mortgage broker or lender.
  • Obtain proof of funds for cash transactions.
  • Get an automated search setup in the chosen neighborhood with your criteria.
Step 2:Searching your home
  • Check listings provided by your agent.
  • Browse listings by virtual tours in your online portal and through automated daily updates.
  • Make sure you have all relevant information like lot size, square footage, number of rooms, property taxes, zoning or any restrictions that may be in place.
  • Choose your favorite home!
Step 3:Analyzing the market and writing an offer
  • Overview and details of active, pending, and sold comparable properties.
  • Define terms and timelines to be offered.
  • Review disclosures for property or examine required HOA documents.
  • Review the prepared offer with your agent/attorney.
  • The offer will be submitted to the seller.
  • Negotiation about price and terms.
  • Cash offers are expected to close on average within 30 days, financing offers with a mortgage contingency within 45 days.
  • Acceptance of offer / counteroffer to effectuate contract.
Step 4:Opening escrow
  • Fully executed contract sent to all parties including title company / attorney(s).
  • Escrow deposit to be wired to title company / attorney as stated in agreement.
  • The escrow deposit can be anywhere between 5% and 10%.
  • Inform lender about contract and start loan application.
Step 5:Due Diligence: Inspections & Insurances
  • Get in touch with the insurance agent for homeowner and flood insurance.
  • Schedule desired property inspections with a licensed home inspector (e.g. home, termite, four-point, wind mitigation, Chinese Drywall, seawall, boat dock etc.).
  • Inspection Periods are usually around 15 calendar days. Any item considered defective must be corrected or a credit given by the seller.
  • Homeowner association or condo association documents need to be checked within the 3-day review period; the cancellation period is 3 days for the buyer!
  • Review inspection reports and decide to approve or negotiate repairs / price (depending on contract necessary repairs may be predefined).
  • Review title commitment.
  • Your lender will order the appraisal
  • Find a property management and rental agency for investment properties.
  • Meet all deadlines and take care of contingencies in the contract, like loan approval etc.
  • A final walk-through will be done prior to closing.
Step 6:Closing
  • Examine Settlement statement before closing.
  • Settlement Statement will show prorated expenses for such things as property taxes and community fees.
  • Sign loan and closing documents. The buyer does not have to be here physically.
  • Wire the down payment and closing costs to escrow agent.
  • Closing. Congratulations – you are the new owner!
  • Utilities need to be changed into your name.
  • Move in or start renting it out.
  • If you need help furnishing the home for yourself or as a rental we can help!
Step 7:After the Closing
  • We will get you in touch with a reputable property management company if you need someone to watch the property while you are not there
  • We can suggest an experienced vacation rental company if you want to rent the property
  • We would love to get a testimonial from you to share it on the worldwide web.
  • We will still be here for you with whatever you need done or have questions about.
  • We want clients for life and not for just one purchase or sale!



Even if you attend a showing tour through several properties, it always makes sense to mark your favorites in your online portal, so you have a record of all the ones you have seen and have all the listing information at the push of a button.

Take pictures or videos for you to have an easy return to the visited properties. Also for your final walk-through it will help you determine that all items that came with the sale are still there at the time of transfer.

If you are moving in with the family make sure you research all the relevant information, like schools, how close you are to shops and restaurant locations, cultural offerings, parks and anything else that may play a role for you in the neighborhood. Find out in the City Guide.

Make sure that the home really meets your personal needs or investment criteria. You do not want to regret a rushed decision down the road.

We are here to guide and assist you going through the process and will make sure that you do not miss anything important!


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