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Finding A Buyer Agent

The Petree Team, Becky & Derrick Petree, Executive Brokers/REALTORs  

Whether you are a first time home buyer, purchasing your second, or third home, buying an investment property, or investing in a vacation home, buying is a huge decision. It can be one of the most rewarding and one of the most stressful experiences a person can have. Navigating the tricky waters of buying a home is no easy task. But, a good real estate agent can help. As you go through the buying process, you will normally take the following steps:

  • Determine your goals

  • Get pre-approved for a loan

  • Find a good real estate agent

  • Find your dream home

  • Negotiate and strike a deal with the seller

  • Lockdown the financing

  • Finalize the deal

#1 -The biggest and most common buyer mistake? Not hiring a good agent.
Most buyers shop for homes and then call the agent on the sign. That’s a great way to do it – if you don’t care who represents you on the largest transactions you might ever make.
Fortunately, it usually doesn’t cost anything to hire a Realtor. Agents can provide access to any home on the market, save time, and reduce stress with their systems, prevent mistakes with their experience and knowledge, and save money with their negotiation skills.

How can a buyer find agents?
Buyers can find agents on the internet by asking friends and family, open houses, or simply calling agents on signs. Once a list of agents has been identified, buyers should then schedule interviews. 

What questions should buyers ask agents when interviewing?
1. How long have you been a real estate broker?
2. How many properties have you sold since you have been licensed?
3. What’s the ratio between buyers and sellers you represent?
4. What systems and staff do you have in place?

Lastly, hire someone that is courteous with good communication skills. Nobody, including other agents, wants to work with a jerk that only complicates the process.

How can a buyer find homes?

1- Internet and MLS Searches 2- Open Houses, Yard Signs, Mailers, and Fliers
3-A Real Estate Agent

What should a buyer offer? Buyer Myth #9 – You should always start low.
If a property is well priced and interests you, it probably is interesting to other buyers as well. We suggest:
1. If a buyer has time to wait for a deal, and the property isn’t attracting interest, offer low.
2. If a buyer has a time deadline or the property is attracting interest offer the asking price or close to it.
3. We don’t know seller motivation, the only way to find out is to make an offer.

Financing Options
1-Conventional Loan – 15 0r 30 years fixed rate, normally requires a 5% down payment. PMI until 20% equity in the home is achieved.
2-FHA – Fixed rate with PMI for the life of the loan but only 3.5% down payment, typically have lower interest rates
3- VA Loan – 100% financing with no PMI for eligible active, retired military, or veterans.
4-USDA Rural Housing – 100% financing for eligible properties and buyers.

How can a buyer get a deal?
1. Pre-approval from a reputable lender.
2. Keep the offer simple; consider an as-is offer.
3. Focus on what’s important to you.
4. Be flexible on terms important to the seller that doesn’t impact you.
5. Put down more due diligence or earnest money.
6. Hire The Petree Team! Call (828) 979-2584 or (828) 514-2807

Contingencies protect the buyer but can weaken an offer to a seller -some are already in the contract.
1. Financing
2. Appraisal
3. Inspections
4. Selling/Closing Another Home
5. Other (Fence Approval/ Disclosures/ Covenants & Restrictions/ Parent Approval)

The Closing Process – Inspectors, Lenders, and Attorneys
Inspections are intended to verify the structural integrity and safety of a home, not to point out cosmetic imperfections. Inspections are always recommended.
1. Home Inspection – Inspect safety/condition issues (plumbing/electrical/mechanical)
2. Pest Inspection – Wood destroying pests and fungi, water damage to the exterior
3. HVAC Inspection – Heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and ductwork
4. Other (pool/ well/ septic/ lead-based paint/ etc)

Lenders – Be honest with them upfront, or you’ll run into issues during the approval period that could cost you money. Everything you tell the lenders must be verified with documentation. Lenders are responsible for:
1. Ordering the appraisal
2. Document review
3. Upon final approval sending the loan package to the attorney

Attorneys typically represent the interest of the buyer, seller, and mortgager of the property to complete the legal requirements in order to transfer the property to the purchaser. They handle the following:
1. Complete title work to ensure no liens or encumbrances
2. Set up title insurance as protection against title claims
3. Order survey (optional)
4. Prepare HUD-1 statement showing how funds are disbursed
5. Oversee signing of Loan Docs and Deed Transfer
6. Hold escrows

Realtors are here to herd the cats. It’s not if you’ll encounter a problem but when and what the problem will be. The Realtor is here to guide you through the process.

* Disclaimer – States and local customs have processes and laws that vary. Not every state requires an attorney for closing. NC does. If you’re in Western North Carolina, call/email us for representation. If you’re not in Western North Carolina, call/email us so we can set you up with an agent in your area from our network