Are You Ready To Buy?

Don't Have An Inside Track? It's Time To Consult A Professional . . .

Are you about to take one of the most important steps of a lifetime, the selection and purchase of some kind of real estate? If you are like thousands of others, you are seeking something in the country or in a small town. You see, more and more Americans are moving to small towns or in the country to establish a lifestyle away from the big city or suburbs. 
If you have decided to make this move, finding what you want might appear impossible. But this decision doesn’t have to be overwhelming, so if you don’t have an inside track about what’s for sale and where, it is time to consult a professional. What’s the first thing to do? Find free real estate publications that have properties in the areas where you want to buy. Or, use the internet to select the area and type of properties you are interested in. This will also guide you in finding a licensed real estate professional that can assist you in finding a property quickly and efficiently. 
Remember, many small town or country real estate companies serve a large surrounding area. Once you have selected a realty professional, discuss with him/her the type of property that is suitable for your needs. To do this, you must ask yourself some questions:

  • — Is my family still growing?
  • — What are their needs?
  • — Are schools a factor?
  • — Do I want minimum grounds upkeep? Maybe just a garden?
  • — Do I plan to own horses or several animals?
  • — Do I need to be within commuting distance of a certain town for job possibilities?
  • — Am I a fixer-upper, or a total zilch with a hammer?
  • — Will I be using it as a second home?
  • — Will I keep the property to use for retirement or as investment?
  • — What is most important about the lifestyle I want to accomplish?
  • — Next, provide information to the salesperson about what you can afford. This way, he/she has the tools to assist you, including how much a bank may lend you, and on what basis it is calculated. Once a price range is established, the salesperson will have the information to help you find the right property within your guidelines.
  • — As you inspect properties, your salesperson will get a real sense of what you like or dislike.
  • — Sometimes it takes a few trips to various properties for you to establish the parameters that are appropriate for you and your family. In a sense, you are establishing a relationship with your realty expert that will help both of you in this exciting time.
  • — Once you are ready to make an offer, your realty professional will act as an intermediary between you and the seller. He/she will help negotiate price, down payment, contingencies, closing dates and anything else needed to bring the sale to a satisfactory conclusion. Select an agent that will be your guide, your diplomat, and your trusted advisor, as you pursue your property ownership objectives.

How To Select An Agent

All Agents Have Different Personalities & Philosophies . . .

As with other professionals, when you select a real estate agent, demand high standards. Make sure that trust and integrity are not just a spoken claim but granted by deserved reputation in the community that the agent serves. Determine if the agent has established a strong record of consistently fulfilling promises and providing customer satisfaction. Consider the agent’s educational training. Is it appropriate? Does it enhance the skills? Request a summary of the agent’s experience and review the track record. Agents all have different personalities and philosophies. Try to select one with a philosophy and personality that you find agreeable and who you can communicate with easily.

Selecting Your Agent

You should have confidence that the person you select will be a trusted advisor. It is imperative that you work with an agent who you feel has your best interests in mind.

Excellent communication skills are a must. Select an agent that you feel will have the ability to work cooperatively with sellers and other agents during the entire process of purchasing your property.

A good agent can be the foundation of your real estate team. An agent can help you find a home that meets your needs, negotiate for that home on your behalf, supervise property inspections, and coordinate the closing. Agents often have useful leads for mortgage loans. A good agent’s negotiating skills and knowledge of property values can save you thousands of dollars.

Real Estate Terms You Should Know

Get Familiar With Commonly Used Terms In The Real Estate Industry . . .

If you are involved in buying or selling real estate. Or, just for your general knowledge. There are numerous terms, commonly used jargon, in the real estate industry that make up a peculiar language all its own, which would be beneficial for you to learn.

 

This jargon isn’t difficult to master, but there is real danger of hearing and using words you don’t fully understand.

Following are some basic terms that are often misunderstood:

MLS(Multiple Listing Service) —An organization that collects, compiles, and distributes information about properties listed for sale by its members, who are real estate brokers. Membership isn’t open to the general public, although selected MLS data may be sold to real estate listing websites. MLS’s can be local or regional. There is no “one” MLS covering the entire nation.

PITI—Principle, interest, taxes and insurance (PITI) are the four components of a monthly mortgage payment. Principal refers to the part of the monthly payment that reduces the remaining balance of the mortgage. Interest is the fee charged for borrowing the money. Taxes and insurance refer to the amounts that are paid into an escrow account each month for property taxes and mortgage and hazard insurance.

CMA—Comparative Market Analysis. A CMA is a report that shows prices of properties that are comparable to a subject property and that were recently sold, are currently on the market or were on the market, but not sold within the listing period.

Closing Costs —The entire package of miscellaneous expenses paid by the buyer and seller when the transaction closes. These costs include the brokerage commission, mortgage-related fees, escrow or attorney’s charges, recording fees, title insurance, etc. Closing costs generally are paid through escrow.

Contingency —provision of an agreement that keeps the agreement from being fully legally binding until a certain condition is met. One common example is a buyer’s contractual right to obtain a professional home inspection before purchasing the home.

Title Insurance—An insurance policy that protects a lender’s or owner’s interest in real property from assorted types of unexpected or fraudulent claims of ownership. It’s customary for the buyer to pay for the lender’s title insurance policy.

 

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