So you want to buy a home! Or maybe you need to? Family and life changes happen, and it is my sole job to help people navigate the buying and selling process. (If you want to read more on how to work with me if you are a seller, click HERE)
This post is not intended to get into economic changes, market forecasts or the best time to buy. It is just about how to get started as a buyer, if you want an agent.
Let's say that agent is MOI!
First, you have to understand a few very important things about how the real estate world works. I know some people know this, however I know a lot who don't.
1. This is a business for me, I am self employed. RE/MAX doesn't give me a paycheque. I only get paid when I sell a house, and all expenses come directly out of my own pocket. Therefore, real estate salespeople think its only fair to ask that you are serious when you hire us to show you homes. Also, that you only hire ONE agent. The idea is that having one agent represents your best interests. If I have a client who is dedicated to working with me, I am DEDICATED to working with them, I will chase down information, show houses according to their schedule, accommodate their needs, etc. Plus I am fun to work with, and I love kids and pets as well!
2. In Alberta, there are mandatory service agreements that need to be signed for each client-agent relationship. This outlines the services we promise to you, so you know exactly what to expect. As a result, we HAVE to set a meeting with you before we can commit to showing you homes. This meeting will be to your benefit, I promise! Not only will we go over the service agreement, but you will be given a copy of my buyer's package that I designed with a buyer's best interest in mind. You will leave this meeting feeling ready to start looking and you feel informed on how the buying process works (which I will give a quick overview of below).
3. Along the lines of meeting before showing homes. This is a solo job for the most part, and the scary reality is Realtors have been murdered while on the job. As a result I, and most other realtors, have made it my business practice to meet you before we show you a house. Now, I would hope that you would understand this safety concern is a general thing, and not a personal one. Besides, we need to meet anyway to talk about how the buying process, and agency relationships work anyway.\
The BUYING PROCESS from start to finish:
1. Find a home that is suitable through the elimination process.
2. Write offer – offer will be accepted, declined or countered. (read more on counter offers HERE)
3. Give copies of accepted offer to your bank and lawyer.
4. Practice due diligence in removing conditions. (Ex: home inspection, financing, lawyers approval, water testing, engineers report.)
5. Remove conditions on offer, making it a firm deal. A conditions removal form must be signed.
6. Visit lawyer to sign title papers and review closing costs.
7. Possession day – I will meet you at the house with the keys! We will do a walk through to make sure all looks right with the house. Ensure you read your water, hydro and gas meters prior to moving in.
8. If there is an issue, missing appliance, broken window, etc. I will call the other party to do everything I can to get it resolved. Its so rare that big stuff like this occurs, and quite often we are able to get it fixed in a timely fashion. However if the other party does not want to co-operate that is when your lawyer needs to be contacted. I recommend and email with the details, then follow up with a phone call.
My direct role is basically done here. HOWEVER, please call me if you have questions or need help. I have had people call me months, and even years later with questions, or they need a referral to a roofing company, decor questions, you name it!
There is a lot more to having an agent than you think, to put it simply, you don't know what you don't know. I promise to educate you so you feel empowered by the process, and comfortable with your buying decision. I have a wealth of knowledge as I have been a realtor since 2006, plus I am a homeowner, I UNDERSTAND what you are going through! I have also moved provinces TWICE, so I understand relocations as well, and how it feels to have your home on the market at the same time you are looking to buy. I have been where you are. Sure there are a lot of realtors out there, some have flashy advertising, proclaim to be different than everyone else. You want to know something? For me it isn't about how I am so different than other agents, it's more about how I am the same as you.