FAQ’s to Realtors

The purpose of a real estate agent is to make your home buying or selling process as easy as possible for you and your family. There are many questions I have heard along the way that I would love to share with you about the buying and selling process. Below, I am going to identify the top five questions I have come across!

  • What is the first step when it comes to home buying? Where do I start?
    • Great Question! The very first thing I tell my clients is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. You need to know how much you can afford and borrow. There numerous costs associated buying a home, including closing costs and your down payment. The lender can estimate how much you can afford so you are not wasting your time looking at houses that are outside of your price range.
  •  How much do I have to pay you to help me?
    • If you want to buy, then nothing! Many first-time homebuyers unaware that a realtor works for you for free! The sellers pay the buyer’s agent’s commission. If you are listing your home, you can expect to pay about 6% of the selling price, which will be split between the buyer and listing agent. From a seller’s perspective, although you will be paying the commission out of the proceeds from the sale of your home, hiring an agent will ensure that you get the best deal possible, not to mention save you time and effort.
  • How much do I need for a down payment?
    • Many homebuyers think that you must put 20% down, but that is not true! Mortgage companies allow homebuying to be easier now than ever! There are loans available that are suited for each buyer’s individual needs. Typically, first-time homebuyers put down 3-5% on a home. You can, of course, put more than 3-5% down on your home, but even with only a 3-5% down payment, you can become a homeowner!
  • When is the best time to buy or sell?
    • For sellers, I would say the spring or summer. The market tends to really heat up when the temperature along with the temperature. Also, you want to make your house look as good as it can. You want to make sure you have green grass, leaves on the trees, and flowers blooming. For buyers, I would say the fall or winter. Sellers tend to get a little antsy after the summer ends so the prices usually decrease as summer draws to a close and even more so in the winter because of the decrease in potential homebuyers. 
  • What is earnest money?
    • Earnest money is a good faith deposit. When you want to buy a home, this money shows the seller that you are really interested and motivated to seal the deal. The larger the deposit, the stronger the purchase offer will look, making your offer more competitive. When you close on your new home, that earnest money usually goes towards the down payment! I always recommend your earnest money be no less than 1% of the listing price to signal to the seller your strong intent to buy.

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