Buying a home for the first time can be overwhelming. While it may be tempting to avoid realtor fees and handle things on your own, having a professional by your side can make the process go more smoothly and provide valuable insight into what’s likely one of the biggest purchases of your life.
There are numerous reasons to use a realtor to buy a home:
1) Access to every home that’s on the market via Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and all other sources, including ones that may not be listed publicly. Some agents have what are called “pocket“ listings that they know are going to come on the market soon or ones where the seller would be willing to sell but aren’t in a rush and don’t want the hassle of listing their home, giving you the inside track to the deals before they event hit the market.
2) The ability to combine your dream house checklist with your price range. A good real estate agent is one who understands your wants and needs without going over your price range. An ethical agent won’t steer you to homes that are out of your reach.
3) Knowledge of recent comps (comparables) — what similar properties have sold recently and for how much, which will help you once you are ready to make an offer. Your realtor has the ability and expertise to negotiate on your behalf.
4) You should hire a realtor that is knowledgeable about the area you are looking in. For instance, they should be knowledgeable about the schools, neighborhood and zoning issues.
5) Your realtor should also have a good working relationship with the other area real estate agents. There have been cases where I have contacted other agents about possible listings they might have coming on the market that might fit the needs of my buyers. Also when it comes the negotiating it is good for your realtor to be on good terms with the listing agent.
6) Your realtor should have the expertise to negotiate and close the deal. They should have a list of referrals for inspectors, mortgage brokers and even tradesman for repairs and renovations you might want to do at a later date. Your realtor must have the muscle to get a deal through the escrow or “under contract” period. They should have a good track record of getting buyers to the closing table and buying their dream home.
Buying a home is one of the most important decisions of your life. Don’t leave it up to someone who is not an expert in their field.
Carrie Colby is a Realtor® the Broker/Owner of Premier Properties in Raymond she can be reached at columnist@TheWindhamEagle.com.