Selling, Buying - or Both? Ask the Experts!

By: Teri Treadway

In today's competitive residential real estate market, everyone from first-time homebuyers to experienced homeowners and seasoned real estate investors needs to consider a number of aspects that may impact the sale of their current home as well as their purchase of a new home or vacation home. Selling and/or buying a home are large,
complex financial transactions; and for that reason, it is important to have qualified experts help you navigate the process.

If you're a buyer, working with a real estate professional can provide numerous benefits--helping find the right house, providing guidance in negotiating a price, and handling details that will ensure a smooth home purchase.

Your Realtor can also provide resourceful guidance for selecting the right neighborhood for your individual needs. He or she can identify comparable area sales as well as supply neighborhood information - current real estate values, taxes, utility costs, school district, municipal services and other community aspects that may impact your decision to buy.

An experienced real estate professional understands your time is valuable, and can help you focus on homes with features that are correlated to your personal preferences. Realtors also frequently provide innovative, imaginative suggestions to make a home more suitable for your needs. They can advise you regarding tax implications and provide guidance during contract negotiations.

Realtor representation is especially beneficial when you need to negotiate your purchase price within a limited time frame. By providing prompt, legally binding contractual documentation and advising you throughout negotiations, your real estate professional can help make the purchase transaction smooth and seamless - and more importantly, help you obtain the home you want at the price you want to pay.

If you're a seller, listing your home with a qualified real estate professional also can be beneficial. Realtors can offer a marketing plan to attract potential buyers; and supply a pricing strategy that will fit your individual needs. By accessing agency resources, a Realtor can provide you with information regarding current market value of properties in your area; and by monitoring market conditions, help you obtain the best price for your property.

Another key person in the Selling/Purchasing process is the mortgage lender. From a seller's perspective, it is important to consider whether or not your potential buyers have already prequalified for a loan with a mortgage lender. Prequalification ensures that the potential buyer has the financial ability to purchase your home and has obtained secure financing for his or her offer.

If you are planning to purchase another home with the assets from the sale of your current property, you change positions from seller to buyer, and the previous advice applies to you. It is always beneficial for you to be prequalified for your next home purchase. From a 'buyer' perspective, prequalification gives you an advantage over other buyers who are not prequalified by assuring the seller that you indeed can support the offer you are making for the property.

Today's real estate professionals and residential mortgage lenders frequently work closely together and with clients as trusted advisors to help achieve the customer's home-buying dreams. Whether you are buying or selling - or both - working with qualified professionals reduces risk, saves time and assures a smoother, more streamlined process. In what is the single largest transaction that many people ever make - buying a home - there is little doubt that for advice when it comes to Selling, Buying - or Both, it is important to Ask the Experts!

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