Why should I use a REALTOR?
The purchase of a home is probably the largest single investment you will ever make and if you are thinking doing it alone, you may want to reconsider. All the details involved in the home buying process, particularly the financial aspects, can be confusing. A REALTOR will have the time, sources of information, and contacts to make the home buying process as straightforward as possible.
Here’s what a REALTOR can do for you:
- A REALTOR will help you determine a price range you can afford. Often a REALTOR can suggest ways to accrue the down payment and explain alternative financing methods.
- A REALTOR knows the local money market, and can also tell you what personal and financial data to bring with you when you apply for a loan.
- A REALTOR is already familiar with current real estate values, taxes, utility costs, municipal services and facilities, and may be aware of local zoning changes that could affect your decision to buy.
- A REALTOR can usually research your housing needs in advance through a Multiple Listing Service – even if you are relocating from another city.
- A REALTOR will be well acquainted with all you'll want to know about a neighbourhood you may be considering, like the quality of schools, the number of children in the area, the safety of the neighborhood, traffic volume, and more.
- A REALTOR can show you only those homes best suited to your needs--size, style, features, location, and accessibility to schools, transportation, shopping and other personal preferences.
With immediate access to homes as soon as they're put on the market, a REALTOR can save you hours of time hunting for the perfect home. When it's time to make an offer on a home, a REALTOR can point out ways to structure your deal to save you money. He or she will explain the advantages and disadvantages of different types of mortgages, guide you through the paperwork, and be there to answer last-minute questions when you sign the final papers at closing. And you don't have to pay the broker anything! The payment comes from the home seller - not from the buyer.
Where do I find a REALTOR?
Family and friends are a great resource when it comes to recommending a REALTOR. If they have had a good experience, they will be more than happy to provide a reference. You can also contact your local real estate board, and ask for a recommendation. Some Boards even have a “search for a REALTOR” feature on their web sites.
Make a list of several REALTORS and talk to each before choosing one. Look for a REALTOR who listens well and understands your needs, and whose judgment you trust. The ideal REALTOR knows the local area well and has resources and contacts to help you in your search. Overall, you want to choose an agent that makes you feel comfortable and can provide all the knowledge and services you need.