When a buyer decides to work with a particular Real Estate Broker, they enter into an Agency Relationship. This means that the broker has a legal duty to represent and protect the buyer’s best interest throughout the entire process. The broker accomplishes this by protecting confidential information, negotiating price and terms, completing necessary legal paperwork, and advising on best practices. All of this value comes at no cost to the buyer. A majority of the time the commission for both buying and selling brokers is paid for by the seller.
Getting pre-approved for financing should be one of the first steps in your home purchase process. It is best to complete this step before your home search begins. A pre-approval letter will help you and your broker identify your price range, and adjust your search criteria accordingly. When you find a home you love, your offer will be much more competitive if you are a pre-approved buyer. Offers with a pre-approval letter have a higher acceptance rate.
It is important that your broker understands what you are looking for in a home. Take time to communicate your preferences, including the features you need (e.g. number of bedrooms) as well as the things you want (e.g. a view, historic charm). It’s important to remember that your broker’s search tools have limitations, not all home features can be entered in as search criteria. But a good broker can manipulate the criteria to produce searches that meet your needs while staying within your price range.
Now comes the fun part! Your broker will match the criteria outlined in Step 3 with the current listings available in your market and compile a list of potential homes to tour. Our team uses some of the best tools in the business to help both buyers and brokers find available homes, preview listings virtually and/or schedule in-person showings. Our brokers have their own websites, updated daily with featured listings. With a single click, a buyer can communicate their interest in a particular property to their broker.
Once you have identified a property you would like to purchase, the official process begins. In this early stage, the broker and buyer will work together to negotiate price and terms with the seller. It is not uncommon for a few offers and counter-offers to be written before a final agreement is reached. Once an offer is accepted, the listing changes from “active” to “pending,” and the home is officially “under contract."
The sale has been negotiated, but your broker's service has only just begun. During this time, your broker will order the proper inspections, review Title reports and property disclosures with you, and negotiate repairs, if needed. This stage, typically lasting between 30-40 days, is crucial for the buyer’s protection as a consumer and a homeowner.
When all due diligence has been completed, final loan documents are signed and funding is released through escrow. Buyers will make an appointment to sign at the Title Company. Finally, the buyer is given the keys and will take possession of their new home!
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