2009-05-22 / Real Estate
Should Buyers Use A Real Estate Professional?
With just the stroke of a few keys, you can find myriad resources on the Internet to help in your search for a new home. Besides property listings, you can find out about specific communities, schools and mortgage options.
Prudential Real Estate made make three resources—Environmental Profile, Property Profile and Value Range Estimate—available on www.prudential.com/ realestate that provide detailed real estate information just by keying in a U.S. property address.
With this wealth of information at your disposal, do you really need a real estate professional to represent you? Absolutely.
When you go to an unfamiliar place, you could do a self-guided tour; however, your tour is more rewarding and enriching when you have someone who is familiar with the location to guide you along, because he or she has inside knowledge on the history, culture and stories that you may not have otherwise received.
The same can be said about sales professionals. Their role is more than someone to drive you around from property to property. They can be a great resource, especially to homebuyers relocating from other communities. He or she knows the local area including home values, taxes, utility costs and school data and may even be knowledgeable about resources pertaining to your special interest or needs. For example, should you require help relocating an aging parent with you, your real estate professional may be able to direct you to local services or organizations for the elderly.
A sale professional can familiarize you with the process involved in buying a home, alert you to potential risks, help you determine how much house you can afford, explain alternative financing strategies and provide tremendous moral support.
Another benefit is having a strong advocate during the negotiating process. Sale professionals can help you objectively evaluate an offer, then work to negotiate a favorable contract. During the process, he or she will review the contract and obligations before you sign, explaining how contingencies and release clauses work and so on.
Something easy to overlook is a real estate professional's familiarity with the complexity and risks inherent in the process. A seemingly simple transaction can grow legally complex and risky. When complex questions arise, a sales professional can help you quickly locate an attorney or other licensed professionals whose services you may required, such as home inspectors, engineers, surveyors and lenders.
As your single point of contact, a sales professional can manage the entire transaction, including coordinating inspections, keeping in touch with the other real estate professionals, managing the documentation for the loan process, monitoring deadlines associated with contingencies, providing applicable paperwork, estimating closing costs and helping prepare for a smooth and uneventful closing.
If you're about to begin the process of buying or selling a home, consider involving a real estate professional. When the stakes are high, it's comforting to have a specialist by your side.