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When you choose to work with a REALTOR®, you will be allowing that person an important place in one of the most personal and exciting experiences you can have - the purchase of a new home. It's OK to be extra cautious, but once you make the commitment, stick with your choice and give her the chance she deserves. A good REALTOR® will reward your faith by working around the clock for you.
You've narrowed your choice to a REALTOR® that you feel comfortable with. You are certain she or he can meet your needs and expectations. Your REALTOR® appears to understand your sense of urgency, is working with you to get you organized and in a position to buy, and is ready to show you homes in your price range.
Although you may be asked to sign a buyer's agreement, sign "nothing" at the first meeting. Wait a bit to sign until you are certain you have made the right choice. Once you decide, stay with that person. One reason for this is to eliminate duplication of work. There's nothing worse for a REALTOR® and for you than wasting time making appointments for homes you have already seen with someone else. If you are working with several REALTORS®, word of this will quickly get around, and you may find yourself with no one helping you. A buyer's agreement is a commitment that works both ways - it protects the REALTOR®, but it also assures the REALTOR® that the buyer is serious and committed. If you were a REALTOR®, for which client would you work the hardest - the one who commits to you or the one who doesn't?
Discover how well-informed the REALTOR® is regarding the area and the type of dwelling you wish to purchase. Learn what the turn-over rate is in the area you have chosen. Is it considered a good resale "location," should you, yourself, decide to resell? Regardless of how high or low the market currently is, at any time, you should be looking at homes that have good resale potential. A good REALTOR® will help point good resale features out to you based on what home buyers are currently wanting.
Accept no pressure from a REALTOR®. There really isn't any need. When the REALTOR® of your choice has found the perfect property, one which meets all your needs, wants, and expectations, in a location that is exactly where you want it to be, you had better believe he or she will be excited, and will expect you to be, too. But, if this home isn't "the one," sit down, recoup your energies, reiterate what it is you think you want, in case the REALTOR® honestly misinterpreted some information, and - start again. This isn't pressure, and should not be interpreted as such.
When you do find a home you like, ask to see written documentation (the comparable market analysis (CMA)) to discover how much other similar properties have sold for, as well as other current market activity information. This will help you determine what kind of an offer to make.
Never ask a REALTOR® how much you should pay for any property. It simply isn't part of the job. A REALTOR® can, however, point out why he or she believes the owner might take less.
Chances are that no matter how good your REALTOR® is, she or he really has no way of knowing what the owner will take for the property. Anyone who is selling something can change their minds, and will do something entirely unexpected when an offer is placed on the table.
Your REALTOR® should not stop working just because you have made an offer on a home. She or he should be working behind the scenes, constantly keeping you abreast of any new properties as they become available. You can help by driving the streets, write down telephone numbers on signs you see, and call your own REALTOR® for the information on the property.
REALTORS® generally sell property for a living. Give them the respect they deserve. If they are doing a good job, stick with them. If they aren't - find someone else.
Treat your REALTOR® right, and you will find that the person you have hired to "represent" you, will go to the ends of the earth for you and won't permit you to put yourself in any jeopardy, by giving you the best possible advice; sometimes the best advice is simply - take it to your lawyer. In a divorce situation for example, the REALTOR®, regardless of how he/she may feel, cannot "take sides", and must work with the real estate related "facts" only. No matter how many hours he/she has worked in a given day, a REALTOR® must always "keep his cool" and attend to the matters on the table; must be prompt and efficient and "do the job", because a "job" it is; usually his/her only one. So far as can be researched, a job where all the financial risk is borne up front for what can be several months, by the agent, with no cost to the public, if in the end "nothing happens".
Remember: your best investment in real estate is your choice of the REALTOR® you hire to "represent you". Many apply for the job you are offering. If you are selling, you will sign a listing contract with a REALTOR® to be "your" agent. If you are buying, be sure to sign a Buyer Agency Buyer Broker contract committing a REALTOR® to be "your" agent; know that they are working "for you". Ask "your agent" to spell it all out for you in clear language that you are sure you understand. Don't rush. Don't be afraid to ask questions. There are no dumb questions, except the ones that don't get asked. Allow at least an hour and maybe two to discuss your options. To do business in today's environment and protect your interests, agents cannot do their jobs in fifteen-minute meetings. Permit them to do their job. Allow them enough time to work "for you."
*Copyright Carolyne Realty Corp. May not be reproduced by any means without written permission. Protected by International Copyright Law. All rights reserved.
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