John Payne Team – Cincinnati Realtor

Call Us Today: 513-500-7474

Knowledge is POWER!


Welcome to our Real Estate Buyers Resources Page. This page has links and practical information to assist you through the process of purchasing a piece of real estate. One of the biggest misconceptions for the market is that for buyers, the transaction fees are paid by the seller. Your representation is FREE! Keller Williams has created a flow chart which I find to be very helpful in showing the path ahead:

Buyers Timeline

You have already made one of the most important decisions—and that is selecting a real estate professional. Hiring the right agent is critical to your success. As some Cincinnati Realtors® are using the job as a second stream of income, they may be part time, or they may not have the experience or initiative to be your advocate. The Payne Team has a proven track record of high-level customer service—striving to educate our clients with the end goal of a seamless surprise-free transaction.


The second major item is selecting the right loan officer. Not all banks are created equal, but with The Payne Team closing over one property per week, we believe that our loan officers are proven and vetted. We recommend different loan officers for different personalities and different scenarios; we don’t get kickbacks. Here is a list of typical requests that they would have to make you qualified:

  1. Loan application
  2. Driver’s license and social security card and/or green card
  3. Pay stubs for the last 30 days
  4. Social Security and/or Pension Awards Letter
  5. W-2’s or 1099’s for the last two years
  6. Tax returns for the last two years (all pages)
  7. If self employed, two years business tax returns and YTD profit/loss statement
  8. Bank statements for the most recent two months (all accounts/all pages)
  9. Mortgage statements for any properties currently owned/retained

Selecting a house is easy; selecting a community can be a challenge! We have found that the easiest way to limit your choices is to select something besides price, bedrooms and bathrooms as criteria. School districts tend to be the most used method of focusing a search. The trend exists that a flourishing school district offers the best resale values, but it’s typically the most expensive per square foot! Here’s a link to educate you on Schools in Ohio:


School District information:

State of Ohio School Districts Report Cards

The offer presentation is done on an electronic signature platform called DotLoop. Here is an article about the company. We always prepares a cover letter with the offer to explain the position of the offer and typically lay out the data points and intention.

Here is an article about School Districts and “the” Value Proposition–

The professional presentation of the offer has proven to be a great benefit to the client as it is communicated in text and within the “cold” contract. We have been successful in bridging the gap faster using this tool.


After the offer is accepted, we inspect the property with the buyer’s inspector of choice. We recommend a few inspectors and as schedule allows, and typically stop by the house during the inspection to review the high points with the inspector and client. We recommend that our clients participate in the inspection so that the words on the report have a mental picture. The repairs, if any, are negotiated and we move towards closing. Below are some internet links that we use and recommend our clients visit if they apply to the Subject Property.


Greater Cincinnati Septic System Reports:

Butler County—not online, please call (513) 863-1770

Greater Cincinnati Septic System Reports:

Butler County- not online, please call (513) 863-1770

Clermont County

Hamilton County

Warren County


Police and Safety:

City of Cincinnati Police Dispatch information

Hamilton County Sex Offender Search link


Post Inspection- Contract to Close:

After the inspection, the agent steps into the background as the quarterbacking is nearly finished. The lender/loan officer is now in the spotlight to perform. You should expect conversations with the loan officer daily for one week and once the file goes into underwriting the calls slow. It will emerge from underwriting  with conditions. Those conditions are typically verifying employment, verifying funds, etc. After those are satisfied we get a clear to close, then the lender prepares the loan documents for the title company and we are now 48 hours from closing.


The title company will prepare the HUD-1/ Closing Settlement Statement. This document describes the entire financial transaction and communicates simultaneously to the buyer and seller what the fees of the transaction total and how those numbers were determined. Once that is approved by the agents, the lender approves the settlement statement and finally the property can close.


Closings typically take 30-45 minutes for financed transactions and 5 minutes for cash transactions.