5 Things Your Agent Should Be Doing For You When Buying A Home
Buying a home is a big decision. A home is the single most expensive asset most people acquire in their lifetime. The more prepared you are at the beginning, the less overwhelming and chaotic the buying process will be.
The focus of your agent should be to make the process as efficient and seamless as possible. It is your agent's job to support you in finding the right home with the best possible terms, and to assist you through the entire buying process.
Five of many very important services your agent should provide to you:
1. Loan Consultation – A loan consultation is the starting point. Your agent can and shoud assist you with guidance in finding a financial institution and support you in obtaining information on available financing options. A licensed loan consultant can view your "financial snapshot" and help you determine a realistic range of affordability, provide you with a letter of pre-approval which gets you started shopping for homes, or help you map out a plan in the event you're not quite ready to pull the trigger.
2. Evaluate Your Needs – In addition to updating you on the current market conditions which help set expectations, your agent should meet with you either via Zoom or in person to discuss your reason for purchasing, assess the specific needs you have in a home and analyze your resources.
3. Market Education, View Properties, and Select a Property – Establishing a set of criteria about the type of home and features that are most important to you is key in the types of properties you will receive from your agent. They should guide you in setting that criteria, research available properties and show you homes based on the criteria that you establish. As you view different homes, you'll want your agent to reassess your criteria. It's the process of elimination. The more precise and direct you are, the more successful your search will be.
4. Structure an Effective Offer – Once you have found the home that you wish to purchase, it's on your agent to do all necessary research to help you structure an effective offer. They should provide you with comparables in the neighborhood and/or surrounding areas. This will show you what properties are selling for to give you a better understanding of a competitive offer price. They are then responsible for writing the purchase agreement (or offer) and advising you on the terms of your offer, including but not limited to protective contingencies, customary practices, and local regulations.
5. Present Your Offer & Respond to the Seller – Your offer should then be presented to the seller’s agent. Keep in mind, the seller has four options – to not respond at all, accept, reject, or counter. Your agent's personal knowledge of your needs and qualifications will enable them to present your offer in the best light.
Should your agent receive a response from the seller's agent, your agent should review the seller’s response with you. If the seller has countered your offer, you will have the option to accept, reject, or counter. Your agent's negotiating skills will benefit you in reaching a satisfactory agreement.
Above are just a few of the services you should expect from your agent when purchasing a home. Finding the reight representation when buying a home shold not be taken lightly. Make sure your agent has the resources, experience, and market knowledge to support you in achieving your dreams of home ownership.