Home Buying Guide II - Home Inspectors

Home Buying Guide From the Home Inspection Pros

Part 2 - Who Is Your Real Estate Agent Really Working For? Tips On The Negotiating Process.

Your First Assistant The Real Estate Agent

You’re ready to hire your first assistant, your real estate agent; consider this to be an important task. Real estate agents are State licensed and are trained to guide you through your home purchase. Although real estate agents are not lawyers or mortgage lenders, the competent real estate agent should have knowledge of real property law, assessing the value of a home, financing alternatives, etc., and of course, they should have an intimate knowledge of the neighborhood in which you would like to purchase your home. A recommendation from some one who was satisfied with their agent’s background, performance, and negotiating skills, is a good start. You should feel comfortable with your choice and you should choose an agent that you have confidence in; feel free to interview more than one agent (it’s your company).

Seller’s Agent Buyer’s Agent

Unless you have retained the services of a buyer’s agent, real estate agents typically represent the seller of a home even though they are “working for you” to help find you the home of your dreams. Most States require real estate agents to disclose to the buyer that they really represent the seller and if State law requires you to sign a disclosure statement at some point in the transaction, you should request a copy of the disclosure up front.

Qualified Buyer

Real estate agents will want to be sure that you are qualified to afford the home of your dreams and that’s where the advance preparation of your financial position will help move things along smoothly. An ample down payment, a low outstanding debt payment (for auto loans, credit cards, etc.), and a good credit history, will make you a good candidate to be granted the mortgage you will need to purchase your home. You may want to consider contacting a mortgage lender that can pre-approve your mortgage, before you begin previewing homes. Pre-approval gives you the confidence of knowing that you will be able to afford the home of your dreams and will also expedite the purchase process.

Free Home Inspector Checklists

Your real estate agent has prepared a list of homes for you to preview, its time to make preparations to record what you see. InspectAmerica® has home inspector checklists free for downloading; you see so many homes, its difficult to remember what you’ve seen, these home inspection check lists are an invaluable aid to help you evaluate homes that you may be interested in. Don’t forget to record any exclusions (such as ceiling fans, window air-conditioners, laundry machines, etc., you will want to know exactly what is being offered for sale).

The Offer

You have found the home of your dreams and you are ready to make an offer; this is the time to stop and put your emotions aside and think back to the other homes that you have previewed. Review the information you have compiled on the check lists, evaluate the asking price of all of the homes you have previewed and make a realistic offer at the lower end of the band that you believe the home is worth. Remember, the seller can always counter with a higher price and this gives you an opportunity to make a second offer. Should you need a quick second opinion regarding the value of the home, you can retain the services of your own appraiser although your mortgage lender will have their own appraiser assess the market value of the home before they approve your mortgage.

Even though your real estate agent may be very nice, remember, that unless your agent is a buyer’s agent, the agent is required to represent the seller so it does not make good sense to reveal to the agent the highest bid that you are willing to make on a particular home because your agent can pass this information on to the seller (its like showing your cards in a poker game).

It is generally not advisable to bid on a home against other buyers because this is the time when emotions run wild and most often, the successful bidder overpays for the home because the seller plays one bidder against the other.

Part 3 - Don’t Believe That The Home Is Being Offerred “As Is”

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