Frequently Asked Questions
Buying or Selling a home is a complicated process. I believe in empowering all of my clients with the knowledge it takes to make an informed decision when buying or selling a home.
What is the First Step of the Home Buying Process?
What is a Pre-Approval Letter?
A pre-approval letter is a written statement from a qualified lender stating what type of loan and the loan amount that a buyer is approved for based on credit history, income, debt and other variables.
Why Should I Get Pre-Approved?
There are many reasons you should get pre-approved. The most important reason of them all is knowing your “buying power”. Understanding different loan types, how much of a home you can afford and what your down payment options are gives you the confidence you will need to make an offer on the right home. Secondly, when you submit an offer on a property that you love, you will need a valid pre-approval letter along with that offer.
Why do I Need a Buyers Agent?
A buyer should always have their own buyers agent representing them. A good buyers agent will assist in everything from giving references for quality lenders, priority access to new listings, to negotiating the offer and coordinating a seamless closing. Best of all, buyers agents work free of charge! The question is why wouldn’t you have a buyers agent representing your best interests? After all its probably the single biggest investment of your life.
What is Hand Money?
Hand money is commonly referred to as “Earnest Money”, it is an important part of the home buying process. It tells the seller you’re a committed buyer, and essentially will be a portion of your down payment at closing. After giving the deposit to your buyers agent, the funds are held in an escrow account until it is applied to your down payment at closing.
What is the Inspection Process?
Your offer on a home should always be contingent on having a full home inspection completed by a professional home inspector. After your offer has been accepted by the seller, you would call and schedule an inspection to be done by a professional inspector recommended by your realtor. It is always recommended to attend the home inspection. After the inspections are completed you would review the report and negotiate with the seller any repairs of major deficiencies or safety related items that may have been found during the inspection. Your realtor will guide you through your contractual obligations and rights during this contingency period.
Why is a Home Warranty Important?
Even if the home is newer, and appears to be in good working order you should discuss with your agent the importance of a warranty. if the seller is not already offering a Home Warranty with the sale of their house, a home warranty can be negotiated at the time of making an offer. If for some reason the seller refuses, the buyer should consider purchasing one on their own, to cover the costs of unforeseen repairs down the road.
What is the First Step in Selling My Home?
Relocating? Downsizing? Moving up? No matter what your reason is for selling your home, your very first step is to interview several qualified Realtors for the job. Choosing an agent you feel comfortable with and whom you can trust is most important. You will likely be working with that agent for many months and having a good relationship is an important key to a successful sale. There are many services your agent should provide when listing your home for sale, in order to get your the most amount of money in the shortest amount of time.
What Items Should I “Fix Up” Before Selling?
After choosing the Realtor you want to hire, they should walk through the home with you and give advice on any items that need attention. I recommend to start with a good cleaning. Clean your home from top to bottom. Next, de-clutter and de-personalize your home. Packing away unused items and all items that are not completely necessary at that time. Don’t forget curb appeal! Paint the front door or replace if necessary, clean drive way and clear walk ways, and plant some fresh flowers. Remember you only get one first impression, make it count!
How do I Determine What My House is Worth?
Again, start with finding a professional real estate agent, they will assist you in determining the value of your home. A professional Realtor will determine the price of the home based on comparable sales and advise you in good faith what price to list your home at to attract the most buyers, ultimately netting your the most money possible. For a Professional Market Evaluation on your home, Contact Stephanie.
For more answers to your real estate questions or to learn more about the real estate services Stephanie can provide and how she can meet your buying or selling needs, please call or contact her today! To view more testimonials, please go to Stephanie’s Zillow Page.