Call nowInfo

12 Things To Do Before You List Your Home For Sale

No Comments

Being mentally prepared to sell your home is one thing, but being physically ready takes work. This time of year is when most sellers start mulling over the idea of listing their home for spring. If you’re one of those people considering putting your home up for sale here’s a list of things that will help make sure the home is visually ready to accept buyers.

Curb Appeal  The first thing a buyer sees is the outside of your home. Make sure your shrubs, bushes, and trees are trimmed, and your lawn is neat after the winter thaw. If there is still some snow or mud left over, try to shovel and/or spray the walkway clean. Create a welcoming path into the front door that will leave your buyer ready to see more as their agent turns the key.

Spring Clean  If a house is well maintained and clean the
buyers will assume the parts of the home they can’t see were meticulously cared for as well. If they see dirt, dust and other remnants of a disorderly house they may start to question what’s going on in the hidden parts of the home that they are missing. Make sure you do a thorough deep clean before you list your house and then maintain that sparkle as your home continues to be available for showings. It will also help you be prepared for any last minute showing requests if you manage to keep your home clean along the way.

Make Minor Repairs  If you have a leaky faucet, a loose doorknob or a missing drain cover, get those items fixed before you list the home. Small repairs might not be a big deal to you, but to a buyer, it’s the minor details that stick out as they walk through your home. It would be a shame if something as small as an outlet cover turned them off before they even had a chance to consider your home.

Paint and Patch  Remove any large paintings and frames and make sure to patch the drywall behind them. Any mounts would be better taken down BEFORE you list so that buyers are concerned about what the wall will look like once you remove your TV. Don’t go overboard painting your home, just make sure it’s touched up and clean looking. And choose neutral colors that any buyer could see their decor fitting in with nicely.

Get Ready To Move  I tell my clients, “you’re selling your house, so the plan is to move anyway. Might as well start packing and make that one less thing to worry about later!” This will help declutter your home and give the buyer more opportunities to visualize themselves living in the space, but also help you have less to do later when you do finally have an interested buyer that wants to purchase. Just make sure to tuck the boxes away in a storage space or rent a space for a short time so that your home isn’t filled up with boxes instead of personal items.

Update The Small Stuff  If you have outdated door handles, hardware on cabinets or light fixtures these items can easily transform an outdated house into a much more modern feel very quickly and cheaply. Spend a day replacing all of your old fixtures and hardware. You’d be surprised what some cabinet handles and new light fixtures can do to spruce the place up.

Check Your Light Bulbs and Batteries  If you have smoke detectors beeping or bulbs that are out, fix those. People don’t want to walk into a house that’s chirping at them, and they want to be able to SEE the house. These are minor issues that don’t take much energy on your part as a seller, but when a buyer walks in and can’t turn on lights, they feel like there is something to hide in the dark.

Create An Ambiance Set up your living room, clear off old magazines and books and set your table. Make it home-like so when people walk through they get a sense of warmth. Also, as you start to show your home, it’s always a good idea to have the lights on so people can easily walk through and quickly see your hard work!

Window Treatments  If you plan to take your curtains because they were homemade by your grandmother, remove them before you list your home. It’s best to replace them with something neutral and appealing as well as something that allows the natural light in. If you have blackout curtains in your bedroom, take them down. Put up something light and open so that people can see the windows and the way the light comes into the room.

Clean Up Your Sinks  Tuck away your sponges, toothbrushes, unsightly towels and soaps. Unless it’s decorative, have a designated bin or drawer for these items so you can easily pack them up for showings.

Make Sure Windows And Doors Open Properly  If you have doors that stick, windows that one open or cabinets that are falling off the hinge, test them and tighten or replace them before you list your home. Buyers get frustrated at a home inspection why they realize some windowns and doors don’t work properly that they didn’t test before because the weather wasn’t cooperating.

Your Patio And Back Yard Matter Too!  If your deck hasn’t been stained in a decade or your yard is filled with muddy patches throw down some seed and do a quick stain on your deck. Buyers will usually walk around the outside before they even step in and you don’t want them not to take a look at the inside because the backyard turned them away! 

If you’re considering selling a home this season, NOW is the time to start getting your home prepared! Spring will be here before you know it so get started working on your home’s appeal now, so you are ready to ROCK when the market is prime time to sell! 

 

 

For Home Sellers – Showing Your Home In The Snow

No Comments

As winter is in full swing, showing your home can be frustrating. When the weather reports numerous inches of snow but the calls for requests to view your house are still coming in, what are your options? Surely you don’t want to consider turning down showings because of some inclement weather, and let’s be honest, if they are still willing to traipse through the snow to see your house, they are probably a fairly serious buyer. 

So what should you make sure you have done when the snow hits and you have to be “show ready”? 

Have your agent bring booties to your home. If they haven’t already, make sure you have a basket by the door with a sign that requests potential buyers to please remove their shoes or place bootie covers on so they don’t walk through your house with wet, soggy boots on. This is especially important if you have carpet! You can’t trust a buyer will remove their shoes just because you asked, but providing them with a much easier and more convenient option to removing their laced up knee-high boots altogether makes them refusing to grant your request that much more unlikely. 

Make sure your walkway is cleaned off and shoveled. I, for one, hate shoveling. If it’s just a little bit of snow I usually let it sit and curse myself later for having a sheet of ice to deal with because I didn’t just run a shovel down my driveway. But when you have people coming to view your home make sure you at least shovel a path to the door they will be using and a path to the lockbox. This makes it much easier for the agent to show your home and much more considerate to your potential buyer. It’s even better to cleanly shovel the whole drive. 

Have salt on hand. Just because you shoveled doesn’t mean that it won’t freeze over. Make sure you regularly salt your stairs, walkway, and any other areas outside where the buyers might be walking. You definitely don’t want someone to slip and hurt themselves on your property. 

If it’s really bad, request a new showing time. Most likely, in REALLY bad weather, buyers are going to postpone their tours. But if conditions are truly dangerous and it’s extremely difficult for you to leave the house safely, it’s completely understandable for you to request the buyer to reschedule. It does not reflect badly on you and the weather is out of your control. I typically recommend that sellers offer a new day and time when doing this rather than cancelling completely. This makes it more likely that the buyer will still choose to view the home in the future, and shows that you are flexible and trying to accommodate and work out and unfortunate situation. 

Having a home for sale in winter can be a tough experience. Between the holidays, the market slowing down and the blasts of cold and snowy weather cramping your style it gets difficult to feel like you’re on top of your game. But a little (or a lot) of snow doesn’t have to ruin your weekend of tour appointments as long as your prepared to put in a little leg work and make your outside as safe and show ready as the inside! 

Tips For Investors As The Season Kicks Off

No Comments

The season has begun for investors. If you’ve ever considered buying and flipping, you’ve probably done your research. First impressions and appeal are necessary for selling a house. There are a myriad of major and minor renovations that you can do to get the home back up to par and make top dollar back on your investment.

What are some of the common (and not so common) parts of flipping a home to take into consideration as an investor:

Cosmetic details can make or break a buyer’s decision to write an offer. Paint, carpet, flooring, light fixtures, cabinets, and countertops are all part of the buyers’ perception of insides of the house. If what they can see with the naked eye looks appealing they want to take a closer look. If the obvious cosmetics of the house are not at their best, you might have turned potential buyers away before they even get to the big ticket items you’ve invested into the salability of the home.

Curb appeal is your first impression! Even if you don’t hire professionals to come in and landscape the yard and surrounding exterior, make sure to clean it up. Get rid of dead trees and bushes. Throw down some mulch and mow the lawn. Don’t let the yard give buyers a funny taste in their mouths, so they don’t make it in the front door.

Appliances and utilities are essential to buyers. If you buy a new dishwasher or a refrigerator make sure it matches the decor of the rest of the kitchen, and the other appliances. If the furnace or water heater are on their last leg, you might benefit from replacing. At the very least make sure to have it all serviced and got a seal of approval from licensed contractors so that if the buyers have questions they know everything has been tested and functions.

Driveways matter. Many times driveways get overlooked. However, once an inspector comes in the holes, divets, and uneven asphalt or concrete come to light. Better to have it evened out and had the imperfections patched before you even get to that point.

STAGE: Some investors feel that staging a home is an added and unnecessary expense. But if you want to give the buyer a feeling of “home” staging is the way to go. It will help them envision how they can transform the space into their own home and if there are smaller rooms it can give them a sense of how they can be utilized without giving them a chance to try to picture how their furniture will NOT fit.

Clean up your mess! If you’ve been working on the house (or hired others to) make sure the dust and debris is cleaned up before you start showing! It can be a small thing to overlook but make all the difference to the buyer’s impression of the home!

Don’t OVER improve the house. Many new investors are so concerned with the finished product that they forget that every little fixture and detail adds up. If the home doesn’t NEED something to make it stand out, don’t fix it. If you’re flipping a condo, you’re not going to put in the same fixtures that you would put into a million dollar house. You won’t get that investment back, so be mindful of where you spend your money.

Don’t skip a home inspection! Even if you plan to completely gut the house you need to know what you’re dealing with. Unless you are a licensed inspector yourself, I HIGHLY recommend spending the little bit you’ll need to make sure the significant functions of the home are running smoothly before you close and inherit all of the defects. You’d be surprised how the naked eye can’t see a number of huge issues unless you’re a trained professional.

If you’ve ever considered buying and flipping homes you’ve probably done your research about the major renovations that sell a house. You want to make sure your investment brings you a return and not a hole in your wallet. Make sure to take careful steps along the way so you can find the process of flipping a house to bring you the joy, excitement, and MONEY you hoped!
Good luck and happy hunting!

6 New Year’s Resolutions For Homeowners

No Comments

It’s almost that time of year again! The time where we set our goals for the following year. We strive to do better, to be better, and to make our lives more fulfilling. This year, instead of focusing on personal goals, I’m going to try something new. I am giving my resolutions to my house. I’m going to focus more on home management and giving my home the love and attention it deserves.

So here’s to a new year, and a “new” home!

1. Lose Weight: Every year I promise myself I will cut carbs, limit sweets, and eat healthier. In my homes case, losing weight is more a matter of getting rid of the items that are loading up my closets, my basement, my crawl, and my attic. Decluttering and getting rid of anything I haven’t touched, worn, or used in over a year is going to feel GREAT. I plan to box the items as I clean out my closets into donations, for sale, and what needs to go to the trash. Getting rid of some extra “weight” will never have felt so good.

2. Drink Less: It’s a common resolution for people to cut back on their alcohol intake. For my home, this means I am going to be more aware of my family’s energy and water uses. Making sure we turn lights off we aren’t using, not letting my kids run the water while they brush their teeth, and being as efficient with our heat/air throughout the year will help save our energy, and in turn, save us some money.

3. Plan More Family Time: I make plans to do things in my home, and then life happens, and something else takes my energy and my motivation away from my plans. I often start projects that get only half completed (or not at all). This year, I plan to schedule my home improvement projects and plan to make sure I do not start a new one until the last is complete.

4. Drink More Water: Regarding my home, I think this applies to my neglected lawn and garden. I am going to focus this summer on making sure the dry patches are tended. I want to be more attentive to my garden and prune my roses when I should, rake the leaves when they need, and not wait until the lawn is overgrown before I mow. This will give my home the exterior appeal that I am looking for so that when I come home after a long day of work, the first thing I see will be my beautifully maintained yard.

5. Work Out: Instead of calling in help for small repairs or renovations, I am going to put forth the effort to learn to do the small things on my own. The internet is vast with information and many home improvement or repair projects can be done with minimal tools and even less experience. A little guidance and a lot of motivation, and before I know it I’ll be fixing up my whole house, ALL ON MY OWN!

6. Stop Procrastinating: I often put projects or maintenance on the back burner when it comes to my home. In life, this means anxiety and cramming in work to meet critical deadlines. But in homeownership, this means significant utilities and home operating systems break down because of the lack of care they’ve been given. This past year my water heater rusted out because I hadn’t noticed it was on its last leg. This year, I will put more time into small maintenance acts that will help the longevity of my home’s vital systems and hopefully keep me from a financially draining home emergency.

Who says resolutions have to be personal? I think putting a little time, effort, and organization into my home will be a great way for me to spend my year working on my largest investment. Pride of ownership shines through and there’s no pride like the one you create yourself! Happy New Year, here’s to a better home and ultimately, a better you! 

Motto Mortgage 360 – Mission Against Hunger Drive Is HERE!

No Comments

As many of you know our office space currently announced the grand opening of Motto Mortgage 360, an innovative mortgage broker franchise, which operates independently, but within the same space as RE/MAX Achievers.

Along with this comes their Mission Against Hunger Drive which is striving to bring hope to areas of the community with food donations. You can simply come to our office to grab a Mission Against Hunger bag that will help stock the local food banks, especially during the holiday season.

 

As Realtors, we know that when you’re moving, many times you have canned goods, dry goods, boxes of foods that aren’t expired but you don’t want to move from one home to the next. Instead of taking these items to the trash, we are urging the community to come grab a bag to fill up instead! Even if you’re not moving but looking for a way to give back to the community during this holiday season, you’re welcome to join in the mission. Simply bring in your non-perishable donations to our office, or you can come pick up one of the reusable bags to collect and return at your convenience.

Any non-perishable, unexpired food is graciously accepted. If you’re looking for ways to give back to your community during this time of year, we’ve got you covered. RE/MAX Achiever’s is also holding their annual Marine Toys For Tots collection drive. Find the info here: RE/MAX Achievers Toys For Tots Collection

From now until December 15, 2018 we will be taking all donations drop offs at our convenient location in Downtown Lombard during normal business hours. We will then take all of your generous donations to the local organization collection drop site.

Have questions? Give us a call at any time and we would be happy to help!

 

Toys For Tots Is Back At RE/MAX Achievers!

1 Comment

As a family with many active Marine and Military members, the Toys for Tots program is near and dear to our hearts. Every year we collect toys from the community for the Foundation in an effort to help make the Holidays magical and memorable for all kids, even those in need.

According to ToysforTots.com, the organization started in 1947 as a philanthropic endeavor by Marine Corps Reserve Major Bill Hendricks and his wife, Diane. As a dollmaker, Diane had used her time to create handmade dolls for children and her husband was tasted with delivering them to organizations that help children in need.

Since then, the Foundation has reached tremendous heights by raising funds, purchasing toys, and providing promotional and support materials to corporate supporters as well as educating the public on its existence and purpose. “Presently, the Marine Toys for Tots Program distributes an average of 18 million toys to 7 million less fortunate children annually.”

HOW CAN YOU HELP? 

Simply bring your donation of new, unwrapped toys in their original packaging materials to our office during normal business hours to our designated collection box and we will do the rest!

We are currently collecting toys for infants – children of 12 years of age.

Here are some gift guidelines from the Foundation to keep in mind when you’re looking for a donation to purchase:

Any toys in their original boxes/packaging are acceptable, however the organization will not accept any realistic weapons toys. If you think it might not pass, just skip that one and bring something else.

Because many social services organizations do not request stuffed animals and many do not come in a sealed box/packaged type material, they currently are not allowing stuffed animal donations at this time.

We are currently collecting toys until December 11th, 2018 when we will then take them to our local Foundation drop-off site. If you miss that deadline, simply call our office or visit their website at Toysfortots.org to find your nearest drop off location that is still accepting toys, the official cut-off date from the Foundation is December 16th, 2018. 

We have had tremendous success being a part of this organization every year and take pride in our community for always being so generous during the holiday season.

We wish you and your family a great Holiday Season and a prosperous New Year!

 

 

 

Benefits Of Listing Your Home In The Winter (Yes, There Are Benefits)

No Comments

 

A lot of my clients come to me at the beginning of the fall feeling pressured to get their homes on the market and sold before the Chicago winter hits us and our neighborhoods are covered in a blanket of snow. While it’s always been boasted that spring is the “time” to sell your house, you might be surprised to find out that there are unique benefits to having your home on the market in the winter.

Buyers looking in the winter are serious. The buyers aren’t spending their days looking at homes for “fun.” The weather isn’t exactly permitting for browsing, so the buyers seeking to view homes in the winter tend to have done their research before scheduling a chance to view the inside. 

The market is less competitive. With the number of houses on the market seasonally going down in the winter months, the market isn’t overflowing with available homes; giving you, the seller, the upper hand. But beyond that, you have less comparable homes to compete with in general. You aren’t forced to strategically price your home slightly under your neighbors to be more advantageous and desirable to the buyers looking in your area.

Less having to leave the house. You could see this as a negative, but when I’m trying to prepare for holidays, kids off school, and the weather is cold, I would rather not have to leave my house for hours at a time. It works out in the winter because, as mentioned above, the buyers are ready to buy, but they aren’t wasting their time. They tend only to pick the houses they are interested in BUYING to view. And many people don‘t want to be out in the cold looking at open houses, so less chance you’ll be leaving for those too. 

The mood is different. Fall and winter scents remind people of “home.” It’s been a common tactic used by sellers to bake, created a “warm” feeling in the home before a showing. A fire, a cranberry candle, and a home filled with the scent of baked goods have a psychological effect on buyers. A good one.

You will get your next home at a better deal. If you are upgrading, you will have less competition buying in the winter than in the spring, which means you might just save yourself some money AND some stress not competing with other buyers in the hustling spring market.

Agents aren’t as busy. Your agent isn’t running around on showings all day like he/she is in the spring months, which means she has a lot more time to be extra attentive to you. You’ll hear from her sooner, and she will have more time to spend focusing on your home and getting it SOLD.

Your buyer’s lender won’t be as busy either. Many times in the spring if a home doesn’t close on time, it’s because the lender is backlogged with files. The appraisal gets ordered late, the underwriter’s turn around time is longer than anticipated, and the loan process takes longer than either the buyer or their agent expected. In the winter, the lender isn’t as busy either, which means a faster appraisal, faster underwriting process, and a quicker chance for you to have peace of mind that your buyer is entirely ready and clear to close! 

Winter might not be suitable for sunbathing or swimming, but when it comes to selling your home, it definitely has its advantages. You might find that the lessened stress and slower paced market activity makes your experience much less pressured and stressed than in the spring market fury! Plus, many companies offer lower rates for services in winter because they aren’t as busy either!

 

 

First-Time Home Buyer’s Ultimate Checklist

3 Comments

Buying a home can be daunting. Especially if this is the first time you’ve ever walked the path from finding homes to making it all the way to the closing table.

Even if you’ve gone through the experience before, every transaction is different. No two sales are alike, so even if this isn’t your first rodeo, it’s never a bad idea to brush up on the process and keep aware of changes in trends, laws, and legal documents involved.

In a tradition sale in Illinois, this is the typical process. Other states have different laws and procedures, therefore, can have different ways of doing things so always make sure you are researching the correct state and town you are moving to in case their process is a little different!

The process of purchasing a home, whether it’s your first or your last, can be generally summarized in these steps.

1. Calculate your budget. Run the numbers and decide what monthly payment is right for you BEFORE you sit down with a lender and let them run your information. This way you won’t be swayed into a situation that might be over your budget, just because the numbers say you can afford it.

2. Contact a lender. Once you’ve run the numbers and are comfortable with your estimated budget, the next step is to get in contact with a Mortgage Broker. Someone who handles loans like it’s their job because it is. Research reviews and make sure you choose a person AND a company you are comfortable with because your lender will be an important point of contact and an integral part of the team that leads you to your dream home. You’ll want to make sure your lender offers you a pre-approval rather than a pre-qualification once they have processed all required documents they request from you to move forward. 

3. When speaking with your lender make sure to ask about BUYER INCENTIVES/CREDITS: This is something most people forget about, but many times there are grants and funds available to first-time buyers that so many people in the market to purchase aren’t even aware exist. I always suggest to my clients to make sure to ask at the very least. The state, federal, and sometimes local governments have allocated grants at different times for buyers as well as various lending institutions offer incentives from time to time to match your down payment or credit you at closing. There are loads of opportunities to find money assistance, you just have to ask for it. The nice part about a lot of these grants/loans is that they aren’t always for strictly first-time buyers. Many times you must not have purchased a specific time frame (typically 3-5 years) to be eligible. The point is, it doesn’t hurt to at least ask.

4. Find a Realtor: In this case, many companies have much to offer, but more important than the company you choose is the agent you decide to work alongside. Depending on your work schedule, your needs, your area, you’ll want to make sure to find someone who is flexible, knows the market in the towns you’re searching in and has the availability and empathy to do some hand-holding. After all, it’s our job as Realtors to make sure you understand the process every step of the way and don’t ever feel as if you’re not fully aware and understanding of the steps needed to complete your transaction seamlessly.

5. Tour homes until you find the one you LOVE. Once you find the perfect Realtor for your needs, he or she will be able to set you up on an automated search through the Multiple Listing Service. This service is a real-time database that gives you access to any homes listed by other realtors in the areas and with the criteria you are seeking. Most of these systems offer many perks to buyers, for example, being able to make notes, speak to your spouse/partner within the system, as well as direct message your agent when you’ve found homes you would like to view.

6. Submit an offer and negotiate the terms of your contract. It might be one of the first houses you view, or it might take many trips, but eventually, you will find the house that speaks to you, and you’ll fall in love. Your Realtor (along with your lender’s pre-approval) will help you put together the necessary paperwork to submit an offer. The offer you submit is unlikely to be the terms you wind up agreeing on in the end, but have a goal in mind of what your willing to bring as your maximum offer (should you get that far) and what terms you are not willing to budge on in negotiations.

7. Have a home inspection completed. From time to time, buyers will ask if I think an inspection is that important. And my answer is ALWAYS yes. Having a home inspection completed by a licensed inspector gives you the knowledge you need to ask the seller to make any repairs to the home that you may not have seen with the naked eye. Keep in mind; inspections are for health, safety, and functionality issues in the home.

8. Renegotiate (if needed). Should your inspector come across issues in your new home that will cause safety or health concerns, or reveals appliances, utilities, or other items in need of repair for the functionality of the home, your attorney will help you to renegotiate the terms of your original contract. This may be in the form of repairs by a licensed professional or a monetary credit to you at closing to consider the issues mutually resolved. Discussing the inspection report with your attorney will help you decide which path to take.

9. Have an appraisal done. Even if you are a cash buyer, it is always smart to do an appraisal on your new home. However, if you are a mortgaged buyer, your lender will require an appraisal before you can close. As long as your Realtor has considered the similar comparable homes that sold in the area you are purchasing in and found your contract to be in line with those homes, you should have nothing to stress over. Many times the home appraises for more than your contract price! Instant equity! Who doesn’t love that?

10. Close on your new home! You’ve made it! It was a long month or two, but here you are, ready to move in! Before your closing, it is advisable to do a final walk-through where you take one last look after the sellers have moved out. This is a good time to check any repairs that were requested from your home inspection and to make sure overall that the home is in the same condition it was when you wrote your initial offer weeks/months ago. Your attorney will give you the final numbers that you need to bring to closing and verify your walkthrough went well. You will sign all of your paperwork at the closing table, and once your loan is funded you will be the proud new owner of your new dream home! CONGRATULATIONS!

There are variations of this process depending on the type of financing, the situation of the home you are purchasing, or the loan/financing option you are using. But as a general baseline, this process is fairly accurate to a conventional sale in the state of Illinois. Of course, your Realtor should be able to help navigate you ahead of time through the variances so you are fully aware of what differences may be in store for you. But whatever your process brings you, I hope it concludes with the home of your dreams and many happy memories within it.

9 Reasons Why Every Home Buyer Should Choose A Professional

No Comments

 

With a world of technology at our fingertips, it is easy to take matters into our own hands. With vast knowledge just a click away it seems that any task we have to overcome can be easily accessed via Google. I often find myself looking to the internet for answers to many questions that pop up throughout the day. What temperature to cook chicken? How do I repel ants in a safe way for children? What ways can I conserve energy in my house? Small answers are ones I’m thankful to have at my disposal whenever I need a quick solution.

But, when it comes to something big, like investing in a property, sometimes it’s better to leave it to the professionals to do the heavy lifting for you.

Because of the plethora of information we are privy to, many people looking to buy a house find it to be simple to research on their own. With access to unlimited sites offering homes for sale with photos, stats, and information with just a quick click, it might seem as though you don’t need a Realtor to help in this process. But, when you can easily have an expert on demand, it would just be silly not to take advantage of it!

I can’t tell you how many people that have told me that before contacting me, they had been setting up appointments, calling every listing agent, and planning to meet them throughout the day to view houses. It is a lot of work to take on as a buyer, especially when you’re also trying to learn the neighborhood, the market, or the fair market values along the way. It’s so much work for anyone to do on their own, and it’s unnecessary! That’s OUR job.

Do you need to use a Realtor to buy a house? Definitely not. But when it does not cost you a penny to do so and the list of advantages are profound, why would you take on that feat alone? Because as Realtors, helping people find homes, weigh options, write offers, negotiate, and go through the process of purchasing a house is our jam. Here’s why you NEED a Realtor when you buy a home:

1. As a buyer, there is no charge for you to use an agent. In many cases, it is the seller that pays the commission to their agent’s broker who then offers a commission to the buyer agent’s broker that brings a ready, willing, and able buyer to a home. If you aren’t going to have to pay your agent to search for homes, send them your way, update and find your criteria, set up the appointments and keep a record of what you liked/didn’t and why, what other reasons do I need?

But don’t fret, I have more:

2. Realtors eat, sleep, and breathe houses. You know that you are good at your job. You spend every day doing it, and you strive to show your employers that you are competent, necessary, and an expert in your field. Realtors are no different. They do this every day. They are in the game of houses. They negotiate for a living, and they will think of the odd situations that you might not consider, because as good as you are at your job, it isn’t buying and selling houses. When you’re quite possibly about to make the most significant investment of your life, you want an expert who does that as good as you do your job, every day.

3. Trying to schedule appointments to view homes with multiple agents gets confusing, and frustrating. For you. But for your agent, they have a process, a schedule, and a “way” of doing this that doesn’t make them (or you) want to pull hair out. It comes as second nature because this is something they do every day.

4. Realtors work with a network of professionals. They know which ones have done an excellent job, and which ones their clients were less than pleased with. And they know people in many trades. Especially the people you might need to complete your transaction or do the finishing touches you’d like to your home. And a Realtor’s reputation hinges on their referrals, so you know they would never steer you wrong.

5. Realtors work (and many times live) in the area you are moving to. They know the neighborhoods, the roads, the best places to eat, where to avoid during rush hour and routes to get you home faster in the snow. You would have an entire concierge at your disposal just through one person.

6. Realtors make your experience more exciting! Aside from your family, your Realtor is just as excited to help you find your dream home as you are to buy it! They will be 100% in your corner while you go through negotiations. They are on your side, but they are not emotionally attached which gives them the edge of showing you the reason and logic to your decisions and any good agent wouldn’t advise you to do anything that isn’t in your best interest, long-term.

7. If it hits the fan, your agent will fix it. And if they can’t, they will try like hell to find someone who will. Your agent will do their hardest to take the burden off of you and absorb the stress so that you can focus on what is most important.

8. Agents are like counselors. They will listen to your concerns, empathize with your heartache and excitement and lend a listening ear to anything you need to discuss, and usually at (almost) any time of the day or night.

9. Calling the listing agent means you are calling the seller’s hired expert. While in many states there is an option to be a dual agent and work as the agent for both sides of the transaction, really the seller’s agent already has a plethora of information and has had many conversations with the seller about their situation, their home, their goals. They have an advantage of knowing the seller longer and having a working relationship with them since before you came along. Why, as a buyer, wouldn’t you want that same advantage?

 

As fun as it is to “window shop” and look for houses on your own when it’s time to get down to business you want a professional in your corner. Someone with the expertise, knowledge, and experience to get the job done and anticipate every possible snag along the way before it happens so your home-buying experience can be seamless and enjoyable. Why take on the extra burden when there is someone out there who is capable, willing, and ready to do all of the hard work for you? Find a Realtor who understands your needs, is flexible with your schedule, and knows what you expect and let them take your hand and lead you to your dream home. 

 

See also: First-Time Home Buyer’s Ultimate Checklist

Contact Nicole