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North Shore Buyer’s Guide

Port Washington
Find an Agent

Look for a licensed real estate agent who is knowledgeable about the neighborhoods you’re considering and can help guide the search.

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Get Pre-Qualified

Before beginning your search, your first step is to get pre-approved for a mortgage loan (unless you will be paying cash for the full price of your home). Your Compass Agent can connect you to a mortgage broker. Based on your income and credit history, the mortgage broker will determine how much the bank will lend you, which will help you determine the price range for your search.

Take a Tour of the Neighborhoods & Get Educated

Consider what is most important to you. Do you want to walk to the train or be near the water? Are schools and active recreation a priority to you, or are you looking for someplace more passive? Do you prefer a quick commute?

Visit Properties

Attend viewings and open houses spanning a range of areas and property types. Now is the time to consider your ideal home’s accessibility and amenities.

Submit an Offer & Negotiate

Reach an agreement with the seller on price and terms. Once you have seen a home you like, your Compass agent can submit an offer on your behalf, which is a non-binding agreement to pay a certain price for the home. If your offer is lower than the list price, the seller will likely return with a “counter offer” price, which you can choose to accept, reject, or make another offer. Your agent will provide advice on pricing throughout.

Schedule a Home Inspection

A home inspection will identify any major problems with a house prior to closing.


Analyze the contract of sale with your attorney. It’s best to work with an attorney who specializes in your location and your property type. Your attorney’s job is vital to protecting your interests and they have an incredible amount of paperwork to review on your behalf. Therefore, you want to select an attorney who is familiar with these transactions.

Sign Contract and Put Down Deposit

Deposit is normally 10% of the purchase price.

Complete Loan Application & Appraisal Form

Bank organizes an appraisal with the agents who will provide comps to show the property’s value.

North Shore
Receive Commitment from Bank
A commitment signifies that financing is officially approved.
Closing Scheduled by Attorneys
Scheduling the closing signifies that the documents have been reviewed by both attorneys and any issues have been addressed. A closing disclosure will be prepared which will break down all of the costs, and the amount you will need to bring to the closing.
Final Walk-Through with your Agent

A final walkthrough is necessary to ensure that the condition of the house is consistent with your agreement. Bring a list of repairs that were to be completed after the home inspection, items that are included in the purchase are on site and in working order, and that the heating, air conditioning and irrigation systems are working properly.


Your attorney will guide you as to what you need to bring to the closing. A form of government issued ID is usually necessary, along with  your checkbook to finalize paperwork and remit payment for various closing costs. Congratulations, you are now a home owner!

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