A professional real estate agent has to be a jack of all trades. Which is why choosing the right one to work with in the beginning is so important.
The seller pays the commission in the transaction, which means the difference between a good agent and a mediocre one is finding you the right property and making sure the transaction runs smoothly.
Here are some of my skills that will make your transaction work:
- analyze the real estate market everyday. I’m aware of new listings are available, off the market, and most importantly I will know how much the property is worth
- compare listings that have been sold to the property that you would like to make an offer on, to make sure you are getting the most reasonable price for your investment
- strong negotiation skills to make sure you get the most out of your purchase
- legal skills and ability to put together and explain the offer extensively to a client
- experience and have always continued to educated myself in the field
- network to professionals from lawyer, home inspectors to contractors
My responsibility when you hire me as your representative is to give you guidance and advice on your real estate purchase. I will lead you thru the process to make sure that the buying process is clear so that you would have a clear idea of what to expect in the transaction.
I will be asking questions like what kind of area would you like to live in? How much have you been approved for from your bank? How long would it take for you to commute from work in this location? Do you need a parking spot or an extra locker for your unit? What are your needs? and what can you live without? When you decide to put in an offer, my job is to negotiate with the listing agent on the price, terms, conditions, closing date and extras.
Below are some tips of what you should be preparing before looking for a property:
Mortgage Pre-Approval & Approval
Although mortgage rates are at it’s all time low, but it’s still important to know how much you and your significant other can afford. So go into your bank and ask for a mortgage agent or go to a mortgage broker to see how much will be willing to lend.
You want to be pre-approved instead of being pre-qualified. The pre-approval is a written piece of document from the lender stating the amount, rates and terms based on your creditworthiness. A pre-qualification doesn’t verify your income, assets and debt. Therefore, the money that is being lent isn’t guaranteed until verification has been done. Some banks will even offer first time home buyer’s mortgage, so don’t be shy to ask.
If you currently have car insurance, chances are your insurance company will provide you with a good rate if you combine the two together. Make sure you ask your lawyer how much coverage you will have to purchase. If you are purchasing a condominium, make sure you check the building insurance coverages with your lawyer. This will also be outlined in the condominium disclosure or status certificate.
If you are purchasing a resale home, I would recommend getting a home inspection as a condition of the sale, especially if the property is older. A home inspector can check for any structural, plumbing, signs of water damage, air condition, heating, electrical system, cracks in wall, insulation condition of walls, ceilings and roof within the building. You can also find out the condition of the home, and repair works that would be needed in the future. There are home inspectors that I can also recommend, that I have worked with in the past. The inspection can take from 1-3 hours and can range from $500-$2,000 depending on the size of the house. By checking the condition, you would also be able to ask for requests to repair the work from the seller, if necessary. The home inspector will also provide a written report at the end of the meeting to you outlining what has been covered during the inspection.
A lawyer is required to complete a closing for your property. He/she will search for liens, encroachments and easements on the property that you are about to purchase. Your lawyer will then register the property under your name, so you will get legal title of the property. It is important to ask your lawyer what is included in the fee. If you do not have a lawyer in mind, I can also recommend you to few.