Jeffrey Harrington's Blog
There are a lot of real estate agents out there to choose from. It might be hard to tell one from another. There’s so many ways to find an agent these days including recommendations from friends and family to simple online searches. You want an agent that understands your needs from the neighborhoods that you’re looking to buy a home in, to the layout of the market that you’re selling in. Each agent has different specialties from relocation needs to foreign languages to FHA approved property searches. Below, you’ll find some tips to help you find the perfect realtor for you.
Pick Someone Who You Can Have Straight Talk With
You’ll need to like the person you pick as your realtor, but you’ll also need someone who you can talk business with. You don’t want a family member who you don’t feel comfortable knowing your financial picture, or someone who won’t understand your desire for a certain location or neighborhood.
Match Your Personality
You’ll be in touch with and will be spending a lot of time with your realtor. You want to find a realtor who can work well with you. Match your personality with theirs. Do you like someone who is a bit aggressive? Would you rather have a realtor who is a bit more easy-going? How often do you want to be in touch with your agent? Just remember that if you don’t like your agent, there’s a good chance that other people may not like your agent either!
The Choice Is Yours
Remember that the choice is yours when you’re looking for a realtor. You want to find a realtor who you know you’ll work well with. You also want to know that your realtor will work for you. It’s important that your realtor be ethical, communicative, and be a part of your team throughout the process of buying and selling. Here’s some questions that you should ask your realtor in order to help you understand if they’re a good fit for you:
- Will I be working with you exclusively?
- Are you a full or a part-time agent?
- How much experience do you have?
- What broker do you work for?
- Have you closed homes in this neighborhood before?
- Do you work with any lenders or have a seasoned team to help us through this process?
When you think of buying or selling a house, the first thing that comes to mind may not be the legal aspects associated with the process. You may want to reconsider this rather boring part of the process as an important one. Hiring a lawyer can help both buyers and sellers to get through many hurdles that buying a home can present.
There will be many negotiations and a lot of back and forth throughout the process of buying a home. Everything that’s involved with buying a home needs a contract for it to be legally binding. A real estate attorney will negotiate on your behalf and be sure that the contracts adhere to all state and local laws. The lawyer will also help you to address issues that may affect the future of the property such as botched inspections, liens against the home, and other items that could affect you as the home buyer.
Real estate attorneys will perform what is called a title search. This allows them to see if there are any outstanding liens or judgements against the house. This title search will also make sure that the seller has the right to actually sell the property that’s being sold. An attorney can do all of this much quicker than the average person since they have working relationships with title companies.
Transfer Of Property
If a property is being transferred through a corporation, trust, or partnership, things can get complicated. It’s good to have an attorney who is used to working with these complex situations and understands the legal boundaries within the state or municipality that the property is in.
If You Choose Not To Have A Real Estate Attorney
Many times, a real estate attorney isn’t required to buy a property. It is advisable to have one, however. Without an attorney you increase your chances of problems arising in the future. You run the risk of:
- Being sued for failure to disclose information
- An improper property transaction takes place
- You could miss relevant facts about the property
- Failing to file the correct documents at both the state an local levels
- Deeds are not transferred
- Building permits weren’t correctly filed
Having a real estate lawyer on your side is important due to the complex nature of property transactions. While some states require that an attorney be present throughout your property transaction, many states do not have this stipulation. You are smart to hire a competent real estate attorney to protect your own interests as either a buyer or a seller.
When you buy a home, you may wonder what the benefits of having your own realtor to represent you are. If you’re a first-time homebuyer, you probably will have a lot of questions. If you’re a second-time homebuyer you may still have a lot of questions! Buying a home can be a long, tedious process. It’s very helpful to know that you have a knowledgable realtor by your side to represent you and help you through the home buying process. If you’re looking to buy a home in a tough market, hiring your own realtor to represent you as a buyer is especially important.
First, you should consider interviewing some prospective buyers agents in your area. Maybe you can get recommendations from friends and family as well. Learn what you can expect from a top realtor who will represent you as a buyer.
Honesty Is The Best Policy
Your agent should be completely honest with you. While they can’t tell you what you personally want in a home, they should give you every last disclosure. No agent should put a home value or their own commission above their clients. This means that there’s strict documentation that realtors must follow including a code of ethics and standards for practice. A realtor must uphold these promises.
Judging honesty in a realtor can be difficult. An honest real estate agent will help you through the home search process, for example. This is a good place to start. If the realtor points out some of the potential issues that you may have as a buyer in a home, you can see that honesty is one of their main policies.
A realtor should be in frequent communication with you. Even if your home search isn’t active, they will check in, and see where you’re at in the process and if your needs have changed.
Your realtor should alert you if offers have been made on properties that you’re interested in as well. Your buyer’s agent should reply to texts, e-mails, or calls within a short time frame of receiving them. Having a realtor that’s on top of things for you is important when it comes to buying a home since, without their help and information, the perfect home could slip through the cracks for you.
Knowledge Of Rules, Regulations, And Best Practices
Your buyer’s agent should have extensive knowledge of the real estate rules and regulations that are within your state. Each state has different practices when it comes to buying a home. Hiring a buyer’s agent is especially helpful if you are unfamiliar with a state or city. Your agent will be well-informed on all of your responsibilities as a buyer, as well as how and when you should complete these tasks and signings throughout the entire home buying process.
When you’re trying to sell your home, there are a few mistakes that could make or break completing the sale of the home in a timely manner. While some things like a tough market or a home with a lot of extra-special features are out of your immediate control, there are plenty of things that you can do when it comes to selling your home. Read on for expert selling tips on what to avoid when your home is going on the market.
Your Home Is Overpriced
Overpriced homes tend to sit on the market for a longer period of time. This is because buyers can see that the price isn’t right and are waiting for a price drop. It’s so easy to overestimate the value of your home as well.
When a home sits on the market for a longer period of time, buyers also wonder if there’s something wrong with the home. Was there a botched inspection? Does the home need major work that’s not visible to the naked eye? An idle home sale leaves buyers wondering, and your home still left on the market.
As far as price goes, if your home has been sitting on the market, you’ll need to consider dropping the price in a timely fashion if the price isn’t right. You also should be open to bargaining with buyers. In the grand scheme of selling a home sometimes being stubborn with $5,000 doesn’t pay off in the end.
You Didn’t Clean Before A Showing
When your home goes on the market, you’ll need to do a deep clean of the home. This could mean shelling out some money for a professional cleaning service. Buyers want to see homes that are in pretty good condition. It’s hard to picture living in a place where there’s a lot of dirt and clutter. If you need to, put some of your stuff in storage for the showing. Buyers need some vision to help them decide on the home that’s right for them. You can help them to find that vision with a spotless house.
Using Subpar Photographs
When it comes to selling your home, you want the best possible photographs to depict your property. Most home buyers start their search online these days and high-quality photographs are the best first impression of your property that you can give. A few cell phone pictures just won’t cut it. If you can’t get professional photographs done to sell your home, you might want to find someone with a more professional camera or a bit of amateur photography skills. Buyers are focusing on the pictures way more than they are the words in descriptions for online listings. Find the best way to give buyers an overview of your property in images with a good impression.
Even the best real estate agents can't share important facts about your house the way that you can. You know what it's like to actually live in your house. Only you know if the refrigerator runs after the door has been open for at least a minute. You know if the house makes settling noises late at night. Soft spots in the floor, and how well the house heats during winter and cools during summer are more facts that you're privy to.
Sharing your house's inside history, builds buyer trust. But, be careful. As you share facts and history about your house, you might fall in love with your house all over again and start second guessing whether you should let your house go.
Home buyers want to do more than walk thru your house
When house shoppers start asking you about closing costs, if you have pets and when you'd like to move into your new home, it's time to start sharing important information with them. Doing so could speed up a house sale. Information to share includes:
The personality of the neighbors. Similar to how authors describe the personalities of characters in their bestselling novels, introduce potential buyers to the neighbors. Skim the surface, letting prospects know if neighbors are quiet, social or tougher to get to know. This is where having great neighbors pays off hugely.
Just as you'd let house shoppers know if you have pets, let potential buyers know if most of the neighbors have pets. If pets are well trained, not aggressive and stay in their yards, share this. It could put people who are uncomfortable around large pets at ease, especially if these potential buyers heard dogs barking as they drove up the street to your open house.
Don't keep house shoppers in the dark
Don't stop there. Tell house shoppers where malls and hit stores are, including how far these hot spots are from your house. If you live near hot spots, this alone could attract buyers who love being at the center of exciting events.
Although prospects will see key features about your house as they walk through it, they won't catch everything. Tell people who are interested in buying your house about the extra storage space that buyers can't see right away and often miss.
Have a finished basement or a finished attic? Let buyers know. It could make the difference between losing a house sale or closing a deal. Buyers may be looking for extra space that can be used as a guest room, extra bedroom or home office.
Show off gorgeous outdoor views. Share stories about renovations you performed on your house since you purchased it. Share stories about experiences you created at the house that caused you to love the house. For example, you could tell buyers that your first child was born in the house or that you started you operated your first business out of the house.
Let house shoppers know where nearby airports and other forms of public transportation like trains, subways and buses are. Buyers may not be a two-car family. Knowing that you live near reliable public transportation could seal the deal.
Talk with your real estate agent about inside history that you're considering sharing with potential home buyers. Do this before you speak with people who are interested in buying your house. Your realtor may have ideas on how you can present the history, offering house shoppers honesty and engagement.