A relationship between the agent and the buyer
November 15, 2011
So you want to buy a house. Once you’ve made that decision, what’s next? It’s time to select an agent. That can be done in a variety of ways. Someone you know and trust might have a relationship with a professional agent. You might see a home listed and call the listing agent. You might wander in to an office and say you want to buy a house. Regardless of the method, if you haven’t worked with an agent before, your first encounter with one will be a learning experience.
You will learn if you speak the same language, figuratively speaking. Are you compatible? Do you have confidence when you talk to that agent? Even though your friend might have a great relationship with a specific agent, you might not resonate with him or her the same way. You will be dealing in many aspects of your personal life as you work through the sales process; it is important that you have confidence in your agent. You don’t need to be best friends, but you must have a respectful professional relationship.
The agent that works for you will first qualify you beginning with determining how you will pay for the home and how much you can afford to pay. Remember, what you qualify to borrow and what you want to pay are two different things. You might not want to make the payment you can qualify for. The agent will work with you and your lender to determine what you can buy, how, and when. Then the process of establishing your wants and needs begins.
What do you want in a home? What do you need? Can you get both? This process can take time as your lifestyle must be thoroughly reviewed so everyone understands what you want and can get in your home.
This is particularly important in Carson Valley as it is approximately 12 miles wide and 25 miles long with many distinct neighborhoods and niche markets. That is what makes it special, and challenging to a buyer. Your agent can help you assess where in the area you would be happy given your home purchase agenda and the assorted benefits each area offers, i.e. location, CC&R’s, lot size, and the many other amenities that give properties their individual character.
With that information you should be exposed to homes on the market that work for you. As you review the available inventory you should be able to see how it works in your life.
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If not, your agent isn’t hearing you. You don’t want somebody that is going to have you “try on” a lot of houses hoping something fits. The properties should fit your criteria, or close enough to it. Sometimes there will be a “curve;” the experienced agents get hunches about things, and they may try something else out on you. If that happens, don’t hold it against them; you might just find that it is really what you want, not what you thought you wanted. Hunches are part of the magic of a seasoned professional agent.
Buying a home is a process. Your agent should have patience and a good work ethic to get you the market, financing, technical, area, and other information you need to have confidence to move forward in buying your home. With the right agent support and guidance you will enjoy your real estate experience and the property you acquire for many years to come.
There are challenges, but that is the life of the agent. An agent’s job is to solve problems, and the good ones are excellent at it. Remember, if it were easy, you wouldn’t need them.
n Lisa Wetzel and Jim Valentine are real estate agents with RE/MAX Realty Affiliates in Gardnerville. They are short sale and foreclosure specialists and certified distressed property experts. Contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org.