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How to Buy a Home in Nashville

Nashville stands out as a highly dynamic real estate market globally, and we recognize that navigating the process of purchasing a home in this vibrant city can be an especially challenging endeavor. Whether it's grasping distinctions between neighborhoods or preparing for a thorough inspection, the learning curve is substantial.
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Find an Agent

Search for a Licensed real estate agent who possesses expertise in the neighborhoods you're exploring and can assist in directing your search.


Sign Contract & Deposit Earnest Money 

Once the terms of the offer are agreed upon, you'll sign the contract and provide earnest money. Earnest money serves to secure the house, keeping it off the market while you conduct inspections of the property.



Prior to begining your search, the initial step involves obtaining pre-approval for a mortgage loan, unless you plan to pay the full home price in cash. Your agent can link you with a mortgage broker or lender. Using your income and credit history, the mortgage broker will assess the amount the bank is willing to lend, assisting you in establishing the price range for your search.


Contact Closing Attorneys

At this time you will provide any necessary legal documentation 
to your title attorney. You will be required to pay any and all fees 
in the form of a cashier's check or wire transfer. and your attorney will notify you of the exact a


Visit Properties 

Accompany your agent to open houses and viewings across various areas and property types. This is the opportune moment to contemplate the location and amenities that align with your vision of an ideal home.



You are allotted a limited timeframe to carry out inspections and other negotiated due diligence. Throughout this period, your agent will handle negotiations for any required repairs on your behalf.


Final Walk­
Through with 
your agent 

Immediately before the closing, a final walk-through of the property is conducted. This ensures that no damage has occurred to the home since the inspection, and verifies that the major systems and appliances are in proper working order.


Offer & Negotiate 

After finding a home you fancy, you can submit an offer—a non-binding agreement stipulating a specific price for the home. If your offer is below the listed price, the seller may counter with a different price, giving you the option to accept, reject, or propose a new offer. Your agent will offer guidance throughout this process.


Finalize Your Loan 

Initiate the appraisal process with your bank. Once you have the fully signed contract, submit your completed mortgage loan application along with all supporting documentation to your selected lender. Subsequently, the bank will issue clearance to proceed with the closing process.


Completing the Close

After fulfilling all the conditions outlined in the contract, the closing takes place. At this stage, the closing documents are signed, payments are exchanged, and the buyers are handed the keys to their new home!

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The Greater Nashville Area

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Davidson County

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Houses in Nashville Suburb
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In one of the fastest-growing and most densely populated counties in the state, you'll discover a place that seems to have it all. The dynamic downtown serves as a hub for entertainment, boasting music, sports, and cultural events. This area is a magnet for urban enthusiasts, offering easy access to a plethora of attractions, including hip boutiques, museums, coffee shops, bars, and upscale restaurants. It undeniably stands out as one of the most popular hotspots, featuring a diverse range of housing styles like condos, lofts, and high-rise living.


Venturing beyond the bustling downtown, suburban living unfolds in elegant, sophisticated, and historical areas. You can take your pick from antebellums and stately Tudors to more traditional and modern homes, all nestled among beautiful, mature trees. The city's outskirts offer a different charm, with popular university neighborhoods surrounded by walking and bike trails, lakes, dog parks, art centers, and pristine green spaces.

Williamson County

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Franklin Neighborhoods

As the most affluent county in the state, this area is renowned for its high-performing public schools and a thriving, self-sustaining community. Residents revel in a wealth of activities, from concerts in the park to vibrant local farmers' markets and numerous community events. Recently recognized as one of the best places to live, Franklin seamlessly blends history with a contemporary flair, featuring trendy restaurants, boutiques, and a pedestrian-friendly downtown that hosts lively celebrations, parades, and music festivals.

The housing landscape is diverse, offering historic homes with character alongside new constructions, Tudors, townhomes, farmhouses, and craftsman-style residences. A scenic drive beyond downtown leads to lush, rolling countryside adorned with charming farmhouses, chic barns, expansive estates, and the national historic treasure, The Natchez Trace Parkway. Rural Williamson County proves to be a haven for nature enthusiasts, providing a range of more affordable housing and land options in a tranquil, charming, and conveniently located country environment.

Checklist for Pre-Qualification Letter
Obtaining a Loan

Maximum Price Range
Maximum Loan Amount
Total Monthly Payment
Total Cash Needed to Close
Loan Pre-Qualificaton

Now is an excellent opportunity to explore interest rates and request a written good faith estimate, allowing you to compare different loan offers and associated fees. Begin by connecting with our in-house and preferred mortgage affiliates below.

Loan Application Checklist

Bank Statements

Last two months of checking/savings statements

Retirement Accounts

Last two months of retirement/pension and 401k statements

Pay Stubs

Two most recent employment pay stubs covering a minimum of 30 days

Signed Tax Returns

All pages of W-2s or 1099s from all employers in the last two years

Valid ID Copy

Driver's license, passport or a social security card

Earnest Money

Copy of check

If Applicable

Award Letters

For retirement/pension income, social security, disability income

Divorce Documents

Complete divorce decree

Mortgage Statements

Property tax bills and homeowner’s insurance statements for all properties


Petition and discharge

Home Inspection Checklist

It's highly advisable to have your home professionally inspected, with your agreement to purchase contingent upon satisfactory inspection results. Your Realtor® will manage and assess the report to decide on potential repair or replacement requests. Remember, if you find the seller's response unsatisfactory, you can activate the home inspection contingency.

Watch out for potential issues such as:



While many issues can be addressed upon request, it's crucial to be well-informed about these repair needs and the overall condition of the home.



In the event that the test results reveal a radon gas level exceeding the EPA recommended threshold, a licensed company may install a radon abatement system.



Asbestos insulation materials could be present in attics or exposed walls in homes built before 1980. In such cases, a more thorough evaluation by an EPA-approved firm may be required.



The majority of homes built before 1978 have lead-based paint. Federal law mandates the disclosure of known hazards before selling a house.



If toxic mold is present, a licensed mold specialist can address and alleviate the issue.

Closing Checklist

What to anticipate during the closing process:



Ensure that utilities are activated on the day of possession.



Ensure that you've transferred funds to a local institution to obtain a cashier's check for the closing.



Bring a government issued photo I.D. such as a driver’s license



Before the closing, a walk-through will be scheduled at your new home with your agent to confirm that the house is in the agreed-upon condition.



If toxic mold is present, a licensed mold specialist can address and alleviate the issue.

Closing Costs

On average, home buyers typically pay around 3 percent of the purchase price of the home in closing fees.

The following is a list of the most common fees:



Percent of loan amount charged by lender to prepare the loan



A point is equal to one percent of the loan amount



Fact data mortgage credit report that is required on all mortgage loans



Required to determine the property value



Indicates what property is being used as security for the mortgage



(Lender’s Coverage) insures the lender that it holds a valid security interest in the property



(Lender’s Coverage) insures the lender that it holds a valid security interest in the property



(Owner’s Coverage) insures the owner against title defects not revealed through normal title search and unrecorded claims



Indicates what property is being used as security for the mortgage



Common fees charged by the lender such as a tax services, document prep, processing, underwriting and application



Interest on the loan from closing through the end of the month



Required to protect the lender and homeowner against loss due to fire (first year’s premium charged at closing)



Required on conventional loans made with less than 20% down (All FHA loans require this insurance regardless of the down payment amount)



Funds held in account by the lender to assure future payment for taxes and insurance (a minimum of two months taxes and insurance are charged at closing)


  1. Buying a home in order to build equity is one of the main financial reasons prospective buyers jump into the market

  2. Buying a home is now 38% cheaper than renting (

  3. Property taxes and mortgage-interest costs are significant, but they are also deductible

  4. The higher your marginal tax rate is, the bigger the deduction

  1. Know what you can afford - how much cash you will need out of pocket for a down payment*, monthly mortgage payment including taxes, interest, insurance and misc. fees

  2. Know where you want to be - learn about the neighborhood before you make an offer

  3. Choose your property type - learn about single family homes, town-homes, condominiums, and new construction homes

  4. Obtain a valid pre-approval before you make an offer - a document verification, credit check and underwriting gives you and the seller confidence in your ability to close the deal once you find your perfect home


This guide offers valuable tips to help you navigate the home-buying process, steering clear of common mistakes.

  1. Pre-Qualification: Meet with a mortgage broker and find out how much you can afford to pay for a home.

  2. Pre-Approval is key. Knowing your affordability is the starting point, but sellers prefer buyers who are pre-approved. This involves applying for a mortgage and receiving a written commitment from a lender. It signals your seriousness to sellers and prevents disappointment over homes beyond your budget. Pre-approval costs are typically nominal and can be paid at loan closing.

  3. Create two lists: 
    1. Must-haves, essential for your needs (e.g., required number of bedrooms, single-story for accessibility).
    2. Wishes, things you'd like (e.g., a pool, den) but aren't necessary. While you may not get everything on the wish list as a first-time buyer, it helps you stay focused on your priorities.


  4. Hiring your own real estate agent is crucial. Choose someone who works exclusively for you, the buyer, not the seller.

  5. Stay organized and focused by keeping essential items in a convenient location to maximize your home search efforts. These items may include:

  6. One or more detailed maps with your areas of interest highlighted.

  7. A list or file of the properties that your agent has shown to you.

  8. Paper and pen for taking notes as you search.

  9. Take pictures of homes you have toured to help you remember your favorites and features you really liked.

  10. Visualize the house empty & with your decor: Are the rooms laid out to fit your needs? Is there enough light?

  11. Be Objective: Instead of thinking with your heart when you find a home, think with your head. Does this home really meet your needs? There are many houses on the market, so don't make a hurried decision that you may regret later.

  12. Being thorough is crucial. Spend a few extra dollars now to potentially save big expenses later. Don't forget essential steps such as: 

    1. Include inspection and mortgage contingencies in your written offer.

    2. Have the property inspected by a professional inspector.

  13. Request a second walk-through to occur within 24 hours of closing.

  14. Ensure that no unauthorized changes have been made, such as a nice chandelier assumed to come with the sale being replaced by a cheap ceiling light.

  15. All of the above may feel overwhelming, which is why having a professional represent you and manage all the details is highly recommended. Please contact us directly to discuss any of these matters in further detail.


The VA and USDA both offer a zero down loan program for individuals and/or properties that meet their criteria. Sometimes, loans require little or no cash out of pocket. Some HUD properties are available with as little as a $100 down.


The Federal Housing Administration loan program can allow as little as 3.5% down and it is more lenient than most other programs on minimum credit scores and other factors.


Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac conventional loans are available with down payments as low as 3%. The minimum on these programs can change dependent on factors such as property type, credit score, occupancy, etc. Down payments of 20% or more avoid the additional mortgage insurance expense.

Offer Accepted: What's Next?

Congratulations! You're well on your way to becoming the proud owner of your own home!


To ensure a smooth escrow and settlement process, follow these suggestions (and your Realtors®' advice):

  1. Prepare for the down payment, a crucial step in your home purchase. You have flexibility in choosing the amount based on your mortgage terms. Remember, a higher down payment means quicker repayment and lower monthly mortgage payments.

  2. Engage an escrow or settlement company to act as an impartial third party, overseeing the transaction process and guiding you on fund disbursement for the new home's deed. Make sure your account has sufficient funds to cover any deposit checks.

  3. Your deposit check will be cashed and applied to the home's purchase price upon successful completion. If the sale falls through, you may be entitled to a refund, minus standard cancellation fees. Consult your counsel about including a liquidated damages clause in the contract.

  4. The escrow period is typically around 30 days. During this time, various contract items must be satisfactorily completed, including:

    • Inspection contingency: Conduct this promptly after signing the purchase contract, as unsatisfactory results may lead to contract cancellation.

    • Financing contingency: Secure funding within the contract's timeframe. If unable, decide whether to remove the contingency or cancel the contract.

      Seller providing marketable title: Review the title report with an attorney or title officer to ensure legal ownership without issues.

  5. Secure homeowner's insurance: Apply for insurance soon after signing the contract, meeting any specific requirements.

  6. Contact local utility companies to schedule service activation upon closing.

  7. Schedule the final walk-through inspection to confirm the property matches the contract specifications.


Congratulations! With the completion of the sale, you're now the delighted owner of a new home. Well done!

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(615) 497-0170

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