The Ultimate List of Homebuyer Tips

The Internet is awash with short and incomplete lists of tips for homebuyers. For the many Americans unfamiliar with the home-buying process, trying to determine which tips to focus on could be confusing. Upon reading these lists, aspiring homebuyers must ask themselves, “Are these tips that industry experts would actually recommend, and are they worth spending my valuable time on?”

To remedy this problem, our friends at Market Leader gathered tips for homebuyers from half a dozen sources, put them all on one giant list, and, after removing the trivial and contradictory ones, surveyed almost 400 top real estate agents about the importance of each tip. For the 17 tips featured in this survey, participants indicated whether they found them to be very, moderately or slightly important for homebuyers – or not recommendable at all!

Here’s the  infographic that resulted form the survey:

Get a Home Inspection

91.4 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.54 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Get a home inspection to evaluate the safety and overall condition of your new home, even if it appears flawless.

Get Preapproved for a Loan

89.0 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.78 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Before you start house hunting, get preapproved for a mortgage loan.

Communicate Through Your Agent

89.0 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.27 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: When you want to ask or tell the seller something, always go through your real estate agent.

Put the Deal Into Writing

87.5 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.83 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Get the seller to put every component of the deal and any verbal agreement into writing.

Include Contingencies With Offer

83.0 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.78 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Include important contingencies, such as financing and property inspections, with your offer.

Develop a Wish List

82.4 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.27 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Come up with a realistic wish list. Find out what you can afford in terms of house size, neighborhood and amenities.

Know Your Local Market

75.6 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

1.7 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Know as much about the local market as you can. Use your agent’s CMA to learn about the selling price of comparable homes and the strength of the local real estate market.

Prioritize!

68.5 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

1.11 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Decide what’s most important to you before the negotiation so you know what parts of your offer you’re most comfortable giving up.

Look Into Government Programs

57.7 of agents say this is a very important tip.

1.36 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Look into programs for first-time homebuyers. See if you qualify for the lower interest rates, low down payment options and down payment assistance programs some banks and governmental organizations offer first-time homebuyers.

Research Real Estate Agents

54.7 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

7.61 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Don’t just work with the first real estate agent you come across! Do your homework and find one you’re comfortable with.

Keep Other Houses in Mind

43.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

5.8 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: When you begin negotiating on a specific property, know of other houses you’d be interested in buying. You don’t want to be so desperate to buy a certain house that you give in to whatever the seller wants.

Be Smart With Your Contingencies

40.6 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

9 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Avoid including unnecessary contingencies in your offer. Doing so will make it less attractive.

Keep Negotiations Short

39.8 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

4.8 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Avoid long, drawn-out negotiations, which can negatively affect the chances of your offer being accepted.

Shop around for Mortgages

37.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

4.7 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Shop around for at least several mortgage quotes before choosing one.

Ask for More Than You Want

32.1 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

10.1 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Ask for more than you want during negotiations, without asking too much. You can “give in” to the seller without actually giving up the things you want!

Scope out Neighborhoods, Neighbors

31.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

7.1 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Talk to neighbors to get the inside scoop on what it’s like to live in the neighborhoods of homes you are interested in. While doing so, gauge if you would like to live next to these people for the foreseeable future. Bad neighbors can affect your property’s value.

Connect With the Sellers

24.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

27.5 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Establish a connection with the sellers. You may be able to get a better deal if the sellers see you as a person, not just an opportunity.

Click here to read a list of more homebuyer tips

Home Selling Tips from Over 500 Real Estate Professionals!

What home selling tips are the most important for sellers to know?

The editors at Trulia sought to answer this question and surveyed 500 real estate agents about the importance of two dozen top home selling tips. Each tip was then ranked based on the survey responses and then fine-tuned to the top eight – those viewed as being “very important” by 80 percent of agents or more – to create the below infographic, “Home Selling Tips Every Seller Should Know.”

 

Price Your Home Realistically From the Start

94.3 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.0 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

The largest number of showings will occur in the first couple of weeks, so don’t turn these potential buyers off with an unrealistically high price!

Keep Your House Clean, Tidy and De-cluttered

91.4 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.4 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

It pays to keep your home in excellent shape at all times. You never know when a buyer might walk through the front door!

Work With an Agent Who Excels at Online Marketing

90.7 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.6 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Work with an agent who will do a good job marketing your home online. Your agent should take at least 6 listing photos and write a compelling listing description for your home.

Make It Easy to Show Your Home

90.3 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.4 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Make it as easy as possible for agents to show your home to clients. Don’t require appointments to be made weeks in advance or severely limit possible showing times.

Don’t Sign With an Unqualified Buyer

87.8 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.6 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Don’t sign a purchase agreement with an unqualified buyer. It’s not unreasonable to expect buyers to bring pre-approval letters (or proof of funds for cash purchases) to show they can buy your home.

Listen to Your Agent!

83.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.8 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Listen to your real estate agent! Find an agent you can trust and follow their advice and recommendations as closely as you can.

Make Small Upgrades to Your Home

83.6 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.2 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Make small upgrades to help your home sell for top dollar. These upgrades can include applying a fresh coat of paint, replacing door handles, curtains and cabinet hardware, fixing leaky faucets and cleaning the grout.

Work With an Agent Who Follows the Competition

82.4 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

1.4 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Work with an agent that will closely follow your competition. Your agent must be familiar with other properties on the market and know the comps in your neighborhood.

Stage Your Home’s Exterior

76.0 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.0 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Stage the exterior of your home: Spruce up the landscaping, trim vegetation, clean walkways of debris and apply fresh coats of paint to the house, fence and deck.

Don’t Insist on the Asking Price

72.0 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

3.0 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Don’t insist on selling your house for your asking price, its appraised value, the tax assessor’s estimate, or what you paid for it – your house is ultimately worth what the buyer is willing to pay for it!

Alert Family and Friends

67.7 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.6 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Alert your friends, relatives and neighbors that your home is on the market via email and social media. They may forward your home’s listing to buyers they know.

Make Your Home Move-In Ready

66.6 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

0.9 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Make your home move-in ready before it hits the market, so buyers know they won’t have a to-do list if they buy it.

Brighten Up Your Home

64.8 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

1.0 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Maximize the amount of light in your home. Take down drapes, clean windows and cut bushes to let sunshine in.

Clear Out Your Closets

63.1 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

1.0 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Because storage space is an important consideration for buyers, take half of the stuff out of your closets and neatly organize the rest.

Don’t Take the First Offer

59.4 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

3.4 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Don’t get over-excited when you get an offer! Examine each offer carefully and take your time deciding if you want to accept it.

De-Personalize Your Home

57.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

2.6 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Personal items make it harder for buyers to imagine themselves living in your home. Put family photos, trophies, memorabilia and other personal keepsakes in storage.

Don’t Over-Upgrade

56.6 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

1.7 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

You probably won’t get your money back if you do a huge improvement project just before you put your house on the market.

Conceal Your Pets

52.8 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

5.5 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Pets give the impression your house isn’t clean, so hide them, their litter boxes, food dishes and toys during showings.

Don’t Work With the First Agent You Find

51.8 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

5.9 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Interview multiple agents before choosing one to work with. Select your agent based on their marketing plan, experience, work ethic and communication skills.

Hire a Professional Listing Photographer

37.1 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

16.4 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

Hire a professional photographer to take pictures of your home if your agent doesn’t do so. Professional listing photos only cost $100-300 and can increase your home’s sale price by up to $19,000.

Throw Buyers a Bone to Close Escrow Quickly

29.5 percent of agents say this is a very important tip

10.8 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip

If you want a speedy and hassle-free escrow, throw your buyer a bone (like an early closing or a one-year home warranty) if they ask for one. You want to be in their good graces during escrow and after the sale.

Home Selling Tips Every Seller Should Know

Cambrian Park Beauty – Fully Renovated from Top to Bottom

This home is situated on a tree-lined street in a charming and well established neighborhood within Cambrian Park; and is walking distance to the prestigious Hacienda Elementary Magnet school as well as several great community parks. And, located just off Hillsdale and Almaden Expressway, provides very convenient access for commuting to Silicon Valley’s hi-tech industry.

Upon arrival to this lovely home you’ll notice right away that it has fantastic curb appeal; with well manicured landscaping, a stamped concrete driveway with room for up to 3-cars; and a very pristine exterior; all setting the stage for the tastefully upgraded interior…

 

This home has been tastefully updated throughout from the remodeled kitchen with granite counters, newer ceramic tiled flooring, stainless steel appliances and large chef’s pantry; to the recently renovated bathrooms with granite counters, custom tile and new vanities, sinks and more. Additional features include stainless steel appliances, dual pane windows, copper plumbing, large chef’s pantry, large finished 2-car garage, spacious bedrooms & much more…

Upon entry into the home you’re immediately greeted by a very bright and open floor plan highlighted by gorgeous 3/4″ hand-scraped wide-plank walnut flooring, retextured and designer painted walls, and a beautiful slate tiled fireplace with custom concrete mantel. You’ll also notice that the wall between the living room & dining room has been partially removed allowing for easy conversation and an abundance of sunlight throughout the main living area. Prestigious Cambrian Schools.

For more info & HD video tour: www.3428CheshireDr.com

Gorgeous Remodel with Chef’s Dream Kitchen in South County

1061 Clark Way, Gilroy, CA  |  4 beds, 2 baths, 1,474 Sq. Ft.  |  Offered at $479,000

Beautifully remodeled from top-to-bottom with a chef’s dream kitchen and a backyard oasis featuring a black-bottom pool and cabana, this home will surely be your summertime escape!

Built in 1980, this home offers a spacious 1,474 SF of immaculate living space with an open floor plan, vaulted ceiling and an abundance of natural lighting. Highlights include a fully renovated kitchen, recently updated bathrooms, inside laundry room, 2-car garage; an amazing backyard with swimming pool and cabana and RV & boat parking.

The “chef’s dream” gourmet kitchen is just “stunning” and features top-of-the-line stainless steel appliances including a 36″ Kitchen-Aid 6-burner dual fuel oven/range; an over-sized center island with breakfast bar; and chocolate-cherry wood Kraftmaid custom cabinetry with crown moulding, under-mount lighting & soft close cupboards & drawers; all accentuated by gorgeous beveled Alaska Denali granite slab countertops, full-height mosaic glass tile back splash, and 18″ ceramic tiled flooring.

This home is situated on a tree-lined street in a charming and well established neighborhood in the south-western part of Gilroy; and walking distance to schools and several community parks, including Christmas Hill Park which is home to the Gilroy Garlic Festival. Great public schools are also associated with this adress.

 

The city of Gilroy is conveniently located off Highway 101 and within 30 minutes commute to many of the Valley’s hi-tech companies…this great community has a small town atmosphere with a quaint historical downtown area offering many great dining and shopping options…other community highlights include Gilroy Gardens (a great family oriented theme park); Eagle Ridge golf course (with 18-hole golf course with tree-lined fairways); the Gilroy shopping outlets and many award winning local wineries!

Immaculate Milpitas Condo Now Available

600 S Abel St., #227, Milpitas, CA 95035 – Offered at $499,000

Located in the highly desirable Luna at Terra Serena in the heart of Milpitas, this rare courtyard level condominium offers an open floor plan with high ceilings, an abundance of natural light, and a great room with kitchen, family and dining areas, and a large oversized patio open to the inner gardens of the courtyard. And with bedrooms located at opposite sides of the main living areas, owners will enjoy maximum privacy from visiting guests.

Highlights of this property are surely the gourmet kitchen with ample-sized granite slab countertops, cherry colored cabinets with plentiful storage, natural stone tiled flooring and stainless steel appliances; as well as the luxurious master bathroom with dual sink vanity, deep soaking tub, an over-sized stall shower, walk-in closet and natural stone tiled flooring.

A side-by-side washer & dryer are conveniently located in the laundry closet within the unit, as well as central heat and air conditioning, and additional storage closets located on the patio as well as down the hall from the condo. Parking is also convenient as two stalls are available in the underground parking garage serviced by two elevators and stairwells.

Living within the Luna at Terra Serena, an exceptional gated community, is peaceful and enjoyable. Residents have access to many common amenities including a grand clubhouse which residents can reserve for large family gatherings or parties; a great swimming pool and spa area adjacent to a common BBQ area; an exercise room with top of the line equipment; several children’s playgrounds, and a beautifully open park.

Behind the Scenes Preview of a New Custom Luxury Home in Alamden – 6798 Elwood Rd

Put on your hardhats, we’re taking you “behind the scenes” on a guided tour of an unfinished custom built luxury home in Alamden.

Rising boldly above the tree tops situated on an oak dotted hillside on Elwood Road, just a few block from the Alamden County Club, you’ll surely notice this smartly built home as it is scheduled for completion in the next few weeks. It’s been full speed ahead for the builder of this custom, one of a kind estate property, since he initially broke ground in fall of 2012.

“The last few weeks are always the most exciting,” according to the builder Sunny Behl of Hill Valley Construction, “being able to experience the character of the home come together at the end of a long project is a fantastic feeling.”

Built with energy efficiency in mind, this beautifully designed tradesman style home is stocked with many advanced energy saving features including a smart roof ventilation system, U.V. rated dual pane windows, foam insulation in all exterior and interior walls, dual zone climate control with energy star furnaces and AC units, two tankless water heater systems and for those needing to commute to SIlicon Valley industry, it offers a smart charging station in the garage for electric vehicles.

Some of the finish work being completed over the coming weeks will include the installation of the custom cherry in-set kitchen cabinets, custom quartz countertops, special hand-milled door trim, white oak wood floors with cherry wood feature strips,  intricate stone tiled fireplaces, italian porcelain tile used in bathrooms and kitchen flooring, and so much more. The delivery of top of the line Thermador appliances should round out the project which is currently on track to be finished the first week in May.

“The setting of this gorgeous home in the middle numerous native California oak trees really creates a feeling that it is a microcosm unto it’s own here on top of gentle rise in the heart of Alamden’s desirable Glen View neighborhood,” explains Mike Gill of Realty World – Eagle Properties Group. “This home is really unique and one-of-a-kind…especially since new construction is very limited in this area, and with it’s hillside setting it offers a stunning million-dollar view over the valley.”

6798 Elwood Road will undoubtedly be a valuable addition to this lovely Alamden Valley neighborhood. With all the high-tech features including cat-5 and coaxial cable, surround sound, and an electric car charging station, this home is a perfect suburban retreat for the hi-tech Silicon Valley executive looking for excellent schools and a quite and safe neighborhood. Schooling options include the following distinguished public schools: Williams Elementary (970 API), Bret Harte Middle (919 API), Leland High (898 API).

Please call us for a tour of this home before completion (408) 204-7699, or please stop by our open house in May.

Housing in Recovery? Or Housing Bubble? – Spring 2013 Market Outlook

There’s a lot of growing speculation among first time homebuyers that we may be experiencing another “housing bubble,” but if we are, it surely won’t be of proportion to that seen in 2006. In the not too distant past there was a time when anyone with a pulse could qualify for a home mortgage, purchase financing was available to those with little to no income or down payments, and all premised on the buyer making interest only payments with an adjustable interest rate. No wonder the housing market crashed in 2007…there was no sustainable gain being made.

Now let’s look at today’s market…Today’s engine in the housing recovery is being driven by buyers purchasing with fixed financing options, large down payments, and fully underwitten loan applications. Housing rents are increasing and home affordability hasn’t been this high for a long time…so why wouldn’t we expect a run on housing?

Welcome to the housing recovery…going strong since Spring of 2012. The current levels of appreciation seem very sustainable for the short term, especially given the continual scarce inventory available for sale, the current increased housing affordability and the incredibly low mortgage interest rates. And as long as housing affordability remains at it’s current levels, and potential homebuyers will prefer to own rather then rent, I don’t think we’re going to see a slow down.

This is especially true of Silicon Valley. Not only is our inventory naturally limited due to the geography of the South Bay Area, creating a natural imbalance between supply and demand to begin with, but there is scarce new lands available for any major new housing developments. Sure we have some small scale infill developments scattered throughout the valley, which are seeing unprecedented interest as new releases are selling out in hours rather than weeks, but our inventory for the most part is dependent on the resale of existing homes which is currently around 50% of normal inventory levels.

So let’s look at the major contributing factors that have led to our quick housing recovery. Outside of the governments interactions in our housing market that has shrunk inventory levels, the freezing of foreclosures last year and appearance of large investors purchasing pools of foreclosed homes directly from banks, there were many strong economic gains made as well. Did you know that there were 42,000 new jobs created in SIlicon Valley in 2012 alone? And according to the Index of Silicon Valley for 2012 (published by Joint Venture Silicon Valley) it seems that our innovative “tech-giants” are just getting started as there was a drastic rise in the amount of venture capital seed money available last year, an increase in patent registrations, and of course, release of new IPO’s (Facebook for example).

So, with the already limited supply of inventory and continued increase in qualified buyers entering the housing market, what may be considered to be “overbidding” on a home today could be seen as “a deal” in another few months. Compared to last summer, the “overbidding” in San Jose was close to 2-3% over asking price, while today we’re seeing close between 10-15% or more…

My two-cents…If it makes financial sense for a prospective homebuyer to own versus renting, considering their monthly housing payments and out of pocket expenses, and the purchase will be for long-term holding, then what difference does it make in the long run if they paid an extra $10k, $20k, or more out of pocket…the same opportunities today are not guaranteed to be around tomorrow. I know that I’d personally rather lock in a housing payment for 30 years at a very low rate versus leaving myself open to the ever fluctuating rental market. And if it meant putting more down from savings, again what’s the difference if my savings account is earning 0% anyways?

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How House Hunters View Your Home When Selling

In a study conducted by Old Dominion University’s Institute for Behavioral and Experimental Real Estate, researcher Michael Seiler discovered that overall, when buyers view listings on-line they devoted 60 percent of their time to photos, 20 percent to property descriptions, and 20 percent to the agent’s comments; and he found that their interest diminished after clicking through numerous properties. So how can you use this to your advantage if you’re thinking of selling?

First Impressions Matter

I think the study is really important, especially in a seller’s market like we’re currently experiencing, because while it may be easy to sell a house, if you want to net the most proceeds you still have to work to create an emotional connection between the buyer and your home. And since, for most people these days (94% as discovered by National Association of REALTORS®), the first point of contact is through the internet so being sure to use captivating photography is essential to creating those connections.

Importance of Professional Photography

Our recommendation…always show your home with professional photography. It’s amazing how many sellers are still not aware of the power of professional photography when combined with the internet’s ability to expose their property to countless buyers. In order to catch the attention of potential buyers searching homes on the internet, according to the study, eye-catching photography is essential for them to spend more time reviewing the details of your property. And better yet, when buyers do find homes that they find visually pleasing in photos, they’re also more likely to share these photos with their friends and family through social media platforms such as Facebook and Pinterest.

Take Advantage of HD Video

So now that we know how to get an online buyer to spend more time looking through the photos of your home, how do you keep them engaged with your property in order for them to make an emotional connection? The next step up from professional photography is showcasing your home in high definition video…which will surely help your listing not only stand out, but most importantly, keep a potential buyer’s attention. As an example, here’s a listing we recently sold with multiple offers (and substantially over asking, as well as recent sales): www.1339SierraMar.com.

As you can see, the HD video makes a great attention grabber after viewing hundreds of pictures of homes available for sale on the internet, and when properly complimented by professional photography it can help a potential buyer picture themselves living in your home. Additionally, just as a potential buyer is likely to share eye-catching pictures of their favorite homes with their friends and family, sharing a video can be much more powerful and fun for them.  And it sure makes it easier for today’s buyers to get the approval from distant family when a home looks great behind the camera, versus one that was camera shy!

Read more about the study here: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324077704578360750949646798.html

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Top Reasons for Buyers to Hire a Real Estate Professional in a Seller’s Market

Did you know that home sellers who used a real estate agent are 50% more successful at getting their homes sold than unrepresented sellers (Statistic from researchers at HomeGain.com)?

Well the same is also true for homebuyers, especially given the painfully low inventories we’re currently experiencing in San Jose and the greater Santa Clara County. So, in an effort to save some buyers unwanted troubles, I have quickly listed some of the top reasons that homebuyers should choose to work with a qualified real estate professional, preferably a REALTOR® when embarking on their home journey.

Getting a purchase closed in today’s market is complex and filled with buyer traps.

Today’s buyers face many more hurdles including stricter financing and a confusing marketplace of listed homes, such as for-sale-by-owner homes, foreclosures, short sales, investor flips and off-market listings. Added the incredibly low inventory and many buyers, due to the fierce competition when submitting offers, will undoubtedly “throw caution to the wind” by waiving some or all of their purchase contingencies in order to gain an advantage over other competing offers …something that just 12-16 months ago would have been unnecessary and incomprehensible. So having a professional looking after your best interests, assisting you in reviewing seller disclosures and property inspection reports, will improve your chances of both having an offer accepted, and more importantly, help to avoid unwanted surprises during escrow.

Finding inventory is tough.
Gone are the days when a would-be homebuyer was being solicited every five-minutes to purchase a home. Now there aren’t enough houses available to meet the insatiable demand created by the low mortgage rates and high affordability. In fact, we’ve got less than 50% of the inventory available than we did 12 months ago, and homes are selling three times faster, sometime in just days after being listed.

So how can your Realtor® help you find a property when homes are selling so quickly? Many experienced agents have built a vast network with their fellow real estate professionals, and most communicate with their networks, or participate in social events in order to identify upcoming listings. Although most of these properties will make it to the market before being sold, the benefit of working with a well connected real estate professional means that they are more likely to get the real inside scoop on how to get an offer accepted.

Real Estate Agents will navigate you through the home buying process.
To my knowledge, no one walks into their own surgery and operates on themselves…so when buying a home, why would it be any different? Once you find the house you want, the work for your Realtor® really begins as you’ll need help navigating negotiations, loan approval, seller’s disclosures, inspections, repairs, and much more. As your agent, I have a fiduciary duty to protect you from foreseen risks and defects in the property, so knowing that I will also share your risk you can count on me making sure that you go into any home purchase with your eyes wide open.

A professional is more likely to help you close on the home of your dreams.
In order to take advantage of today’s near-record low interest rates, attractive affordability levels, and still lower than record prices, its more important than ever to work with a professional to help you win the bidding war without opening yourself to unwanted liability or risks. This is where an experienced real estate professional that understands the current market conditions, as well the people skills to get your offer accepted at the best price and terms….even in this market, I’ve been able to successfully save my clients tens of thousands of dollars off the final sales price by presenting the picture of a more stable and committed buyer.

Best of all, real estate professionals work primarily on commission.
In most instances it won’t cost you anything to hire a professional to assist you with your real estate purchase. In fact, your real estate agent is paid a commission from the sales proceeds of the home, which comes from the seller’s pocket. And since your agent won’t be earning any income until they have found your dream home, they will be motivated to assist you with all aspects of your purchase transaction.

But, it also means that if the deal of the century is about to come on the market, who do you think your agent will tell? The buyer who thinks he’ll get a better deal by working every agent, or the buyer who is loyal?  And it’s common courtesy to work with only one agent per area that you are looking; and if it’s customary in that area, don’t be reluctant to sign a buyer’s representation agreement with your agent once you have chosen the right agent to represent you in your transaction.

A buyer representation agreement (which is always an option) will help spell out the specific duties that your buyer’s agent will perform, meaning you will receive a higher level of service since the buyer’s agent has a formal commitment that you will utilize their services should you purchase a home in their market area. Just be sure to discuss the agreement at length so you and your agent have a clear understanding on expectations…and most agreements allow for the termination of the contract should you become unsatisfied with your chosen agent’s performance.

And lastly, be sure to stay in contact with your agent. If you want to look at open houses or builder homes, invite your agent to come along. If they happen to not be available, show your loyalty by telling the salespeople you meet that you are already represented.

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Eagle Properties Group now with Realty World

We are excited to announce that we have partnered with Realty World Northern California & Nevada (as of August of 2011), and we now have amazing new products and services available at our finger tips. Added that are also apart of a vast network of Realty World offices, numbering more than 250, covering Northern California and Nevada and with over 1,500 agents. In fact, as of 2011, the sales volume for Realty World franchises for Northern California and Nevada ranked in the top 65 real estate companies of the world…a huge accomplishment provided that Realty World franchises are known to be small independently owned offices of no more than 5-10 people each…that’s small offices with a huge market share!

So now that we have partnered with Realty World, I’d love to share with you all the really cool features now available to us such as our industry leading marketing materials, websites, mobile technology, and the most innovative on-line distribution of property listings than any other large brokerage out there. These tools offered through our franchise agreement will no doubt elevate our service to a whole new level.

For instance, one our National Listing Distribution Program is second to none in the industry and syndicates our listings to more than 800 websites, promoting and exposing your property nationwide, including the top 10 websites for online real estate searches. And if that’s not exciting enough, what’s even better about this system is that when you list with Realty World your property will be displayed on these sites as “featured listings” at the top of their search criteria so more buyers will be viewing your property than any other homes advertised.

Here’s short video about all the new innovative programs we have available to assist in servicing your real estate needs:

So now that we’re apart of a great network of real estate professionals, we look forward to discussing with you how our new features can assist you whether you’re looking to sell your home or find a new one.