When purchasing a home, the best thing you can do to ease the process is to enlist the services of a qualified Realtor. As a licensed real estate professional, your Realtor works directly for you – leading you through the ups, downs and potential pitfalls of the process.
While your Realtor is the “expert,” it’s important to realize that you will be working together as a true “team.”
Buying a home is likely the largest single purchase you will ever make. And your Realtor will walk you through it all, from beginning to end, to ensure you get the house of your dreams at the most appropriate price. But remember, this is going to be your house and your input is vital.
Before you enter into an agreement to be represented by a Realtor, take time to get to know one another and be sure you’ll be able to work well together. You’ll want a Realtor that is open and honest. And in return, you should be equally open and honest with your representative.
You can move the process along by setting the ground rules early on. Let your Realtor know your price range and verify it with a pre-qualification letter from a mortgage lender. Then provide your Realtor with a laundry list of things you absolutely must have in a house (specific number of bedrooms, baths, etc.) as well as a list of options you’d like (pool, wine cellar, fence) but can live without.
Narrowing down your wants and needs will greatly simplify the process and save everyone a great deal of time and aggravation. Nobody wants to spend an afternoon touring homes that don’t match your criteria.
While your Realtor searches the Multiple Listing Service for the most up-to-date listings and availability, you can also be researching listings. There are plenty of resources available to you online, such as realtor.com, which let you to view homes based on a variety of search terms. You can help yourself by sharing with your Realtor the homes you come across that peak your interest. That’s teamwork.
Continue to work as a team every time your Realtor shows you a home. Let your Realtor know specifically what you liked or disliked in each house. Every little piece of information helps your Realtor zero in on your ultimate dream home.
When you find that home, that teamwork becomes even more important and communication is essential. From the moment you write up a purchase offer contract, right through to your closing, your Realtor will help you through the process and assist you in navigating around any potential obstacles. You can help by being easily accessible and by acting quickly and deliberately when your Realtor has questions or asks you to review and sign paperwork, schedule an inspection or obtain a financing commitment.
There are dozens of things a Realtor does for a buyer that go far beyond searching the MLS, scheduling showings, analyzing market conditions and comparable home prices, negotiating offers, writing contracts and addendums, providing counseling and guidance, obtaining critical forms and information, ensuring the proper handling of funds, reviewing closing documents and more. Chances are, your Realtor is working early mornings, late nights and extensive hours for the opportunity to hand you the keys to your new house. But no Realtor can do it all alone.
Effective teamwork will ultimately result in a successful partnership – a partnership that’s designed to put you in your next home. Team up with a licensed Realtor today and make your new home dreams come true!