Whether you’re buying or selling a home, it’s important to understand from the outset how professional representation can help you at every step of the process. Your Realtor can help you navigate potential pitfalls and fill in knowledge gaps you may have when searching for your first home. A Realtor is held to a higher standard than required by law.
How a Sandy Utah Realtor Works For You
• Help you adopt a sound negotiation strategy based on industry knowledge and experience and can negotiate on your behalf.
• Help you market your home and become a link with other Realtors to locate homes that meet your needs.
• Recommend other professionals, such as a certified home inspector, lawyer or notary, insurance agents, home movers, or proven contractors.
• Help you analyze housing market trends and find the right home at the right price or help you get the most from your sale.
Realtors help you value homes in a changing market. They assess market history and trends by reviewing the most recent home sale data on the Multiple Listing Service and creating what’s known as a Comparative Market Analysis or CMA.
Sandy Utah Realtor Helping You With Process And Paperwork
Realtors help you with the multitude of documents that you need to navigate when buying or selling a home. The contract is the central legal document within a real estate transaction. Realtors use standard contacts which have been prepared by lawyers. When finalizing a transaction, it’s critical to know whether adequate financing is in place, when possession and legal title will be transferred, who’ll hold the deposit money, and what conditions will be included in the contract. Realtors are trained to help you with these details. When you work with a Realtor, each stage of the transaction occurs in front of a well-regulated backdrop created over many years to protect the public. This includes: Realtor insurance, an assurance fund to protect deposits, and multiple avenues of recourse if someone feels their agent did not act within their professional and contractual obligations. In real estate, professional representation is available at every step of the process. How much or little representation you require depends on your knowledge of real estate and the amount of time you have to dedicate to the process. Buying a home is an excellent long-term investment. It’s also a milestone moment in your life. Having the expertise of a Realtor working for you will help ensure a smooth and successful experience for everyone involved. A Realtor who works with a homebuyer is also called a buyer’s agent. In one of their first conversations, the buyer’s agent will ask the homebuyer to secure a pre-approval letter from a bank or qualified mortgage lender. The pre-approval letter states that the homebuyer has been approved for a mortgage loan from that particular lender.
To qualify for pre-approval, the lender needs to see proof of income, bank account statements, savings account information and credit reports to determine the homebuyer’s buying power. Pre-approval letters are more reliable than pre-qualification letters, which can easily be printed from a Web site or secured over the phone. Although pre-approval letters require time and effort to acquire, they carry several advantages for the homebuyer. Both the buyer’s agent and the seller’s agent know that a homebuyer with a pre-approval letter is serious about the investment. The letter gives the buyer’s agent more incentive to work hard, because there’s a better chance of a future commission. The seller’s agent is also willing to put in more time with a pre-approved homebuyer because there’s less of a chance that the deal will fall through. Although everyone has access to MLS listings, experienced Realtors know how to search the database to find the best homes within the buyer’s price range. Realtors also know how to read the subtle language in listing descriptions. A “newer roof” was probably replaced 10 years ago. A “charming” home is a code word for a fixer-upper. A buyer’s agent can narrow the listings down to a dozen good fits for the client. Then the Realtor can call the sellers’ agents to arrange for showings. When it’s time to look at the homes, the buyer’s agent provides a crucial, objective opinion. Homebuyers have the habit of falling in love with a property because it has a great view or a huge kitchen, but they tend to overlook less favorable characteristics like lousy plumbing or a leaky roof. The buyer’s agent can help the homebuyer see the whole picture like repair costs, the neighborhood, the local school system, taxes and so on, and they’re not be blinded by one or two superficial features. Once the buyer has found a home that he or she likes, the buyer’s agent is the point of contact for all price negotiations.
The buyer’s agent knows how much other homes are selling for in the neighborhood and will fight for the fairest price. The Realtor may also arrange a title search to make sure that the seller has a legitimate right to sell the home. Once the buyer and seller enter into an agreement of sale, the buyer’s agent will arrange for a professional home inspection to make sure there aren’t any hidden problems with the foundation, plumbing, heating, cooling and electrical systems. He or she may also schedule termite, radon and mold inspections. When the inspection reports come back, the Realtor will help the homebuyer prepare an official written offer or withdraw the offer based on the inspections. If the offer is accepted by the seller, then the Realtor will walk the homebuyer through the closing process, preparing all of the documents to complete the transaction.
Finding and Choosing a Sandy Utah Realtor
Before you begin a search for a Realtor, as with any real estate agent, it’s important to understand the concept of representation. If you’re looking to sell your home, you may want to work exclusively with a seller’s agent. If you’re buying a home, you’ll want a buyer’s agent. When you sign a contract with either of these agents, they are legally bound to look out for your best interests. If you’re a homebuyer, try to avoid working directly with the seller’s Realtor. If you mention to the seller’s agent that you can go as high as $200,000, then the Realtor is obligated to pass that information on to the seller, which could hurt you in negotiations. If you’re the seller, it’s not a good idea to work directly with a buyer’s agent because anything you mention about the price and condition of the home will be shared with the homebuyer. You need to hire someone who represents you and only you in this transaction. When looking for a Realtor, the best place to start is by asking your friends and neighbors for referrals. Another place to go is the Find a Realtor search engine on the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Web site. By working with a Realtor rather than a non-member agent, you have an extra layer of assurance that your agent will be ethical and professional throughout the process.
Meet with several Realtors before choosing one to work with. If you’re a buyer, tell them what you’re looking for in a home and ask for some suggestions. This will help you determine how well the agent knows different neighborhoods and different home prices. If you’re a seller, ask the Realtor how many homes he or she has sold in the past year, and the typical ratio of list-price-to-sales-price. In other words, does the Realtor regularly sell homes for prices above or below the initial asking price? Get an idea how much time the agent is going to be able to devote to selling your home or finding you a new one. When you’re selling a home, it’s customary to sign an exclusive agreement with a seller’s agent. If you’re not happy with the way the Realtor is representing you, you can terminate the contract at any time and find another agent. If you’re a homebuyer, it’s not necessary to sign an exclusive agreement with a buyer’s agent, but some agents will ask you to do so.
How Sandy Utah Realtors Make Money
Realtors make money on commission: They only get paid when they sell a house or help someone buy a house. The standard Realtor commission in Utah is between 5 and 6 percent, which is evenly split between the seller’s agent and the buyer’s agent. The person who sells the home is responsible for paying the entire commission. How much of that commission the Realtor actually takes home depends on a few factors. Many Realtors work for small or large real estate firms. It’s common for a Realtor to pay 30 to 50 percent of his or her commission to the firm, leaving as little as 1.5 percent in the Realtor’s pocket. Even if a Realtor doesn’t work directly for a firm, he or she might work with a real estate broker who provides the Realtor with referrals. That broker will also want a cut. Self-employed Realtors can keep all the commission, but they run the risk of losing business to larger competitors. Commissions are negotiable, although NAR members are strongly encouraged not to budge under five percent. The idea is that the level of service offered by a certified Realtor is worth the full commission. In fact, the NAR claims that in 2005, homes represented by a certified Realtor sold for 16 percent more than homes that didn’t use a Realtor. That said, when the real estate market gets really slow, even certified Realtors are tempted to lower their commissions to sell more homes. Real estate is an incredibly competitive business where very few Realtors are likely to get rich.
The average salary of Realtors doesn’t change that much between hot and cold markets. That’s because in hot markets, the profession is flooded with real estate agents who think they can make a quick buck. With so many agents in the field, it limits how many homes any individual agent can sell. In a colder market, fewer total homes are sold, but fewer agents are selling them, so the earning potential evens out. Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or a seasoned homeowner who’s been around the home buying and selling block a few times, it’s always a good idea to work with a real estate agent when you purchase a home. From their expertise to their ability to stick to a deadline, there are many reasons why you should hire a real estate agent. When almost everything is accessible online, it can be easy to adopt a false confidence that encourages you to handle it all yourself. After all, you can research listings online and plot your path to check out the homes that interest you. For the purposes of narrowing your search, those techniques are perfectly fine. However, there are certain stages during the home buying process when you may want someone in your corner.
When You Should Consider Working with a Realtor In Sandy Utah
A real estate agent is an individual who represents you in the home buying process. Your realtor will set up home viewings on your behalf, give you information on houses that pique your interest and help you negotiate the best price on the home you would like to purchase. Additionally, they provide references for reputable lenders, inspectors and other service providers that you’ll need during the home buying process. While you might find independence is possible during the online house hunting process, once you’re ready to walk through a house you’re interested in, you may want an agent at your side. A good real estate agent will also have access to neighborhood knowledge including comparable sales, local history and neighborhood demographics. They should be knowledgeable about the current market and set realistic expectations for your home buying timeline and price point. Generally, the buyer and seller may have representation from separate agents. You can choose to use the seller’s agent; however, they may not have your best interest in mind. A seller’s agent has a fiduciary duty to the seller. Oftentimes, they can claim dual agency, meaning they claim to represent both seller and buyer in a home transaction. However, at the end of the day, their primary duty is to the seller. For this reason, it’s wise to hire your own agent to represent your interests in the transaction. A buyer’s agent, on the other hand, will have fiduciary duty (legally mandated obligation) to you, the home buyer. This means they have a responsibility to act in your best interest, making sure your private information is confidential and accounting for all documents and funds in the home transaction.
When You Should Consider Purchasing a Sandy Utah Home Without a Real Estate Agent
In Short – Never! Purchasing a new home doesn’t require the assistance of a real estate agent. You can complete the purchase without the help of a realtor. You will be able to view homes and attend open houses without the company of a realtor. Forgoing a partnership with a realtor can save you a significant amount of money. You can expect to save at least 6% of the purchase price of your home between buyer and seller agent’s commissions. Additionally, you may be able to find all property information online without additional help. With the rise of technology, you can access most property data in seconds. If you feel confident you can find everything you need on your own, you may not need the expertise of a real estate agent.
Pros of Working with a Real Estate Agent In Sandy Utah
Even if you’re tempted to work alone when buying or selling your home, there are some benefits when working with a realtor you should consider.
1. They’re experts in the industry. Most real estate agents have a wealth of knowledge and expertise that can help you navigate the home buying process. If you’re a first-time home buyer, a realtor can offer helpful tips to make the process as simple as possible.
2. They can save you a lot of time and energy. With all of your daily responsibilities, it may be challenging to juggle the sale or purchase of a home. Having a realtor by your side can add a level of convenience when making one of the biggest purchases of your life. Real estate agents can also save you time by gathering marketing materials, holding open houses and searching for homes that fit your criteria.
3. They can calm your nerves. If you choose to buy a home without a realtor, you will need to handle all the listing communication. Delayed responses to potential buyers can deter their interest in your property. Another important component of buying or selling a home is the paperwork involved. If you miss something, it will delay the process. Realtors can help you manage all listing communication and paperwork. This may limit your stress and give you peace of mind.
4. They act as middlemen and help with negotiations. You might have questions and concerns about a home before you put in an offer. A real estate agent can express your concerns to sellers, without insulting them, by acting as a neutral party in the buying process. Your agent can convey these concerns appropriately and negotiate the best price for you.
Cons of Working with a Sandy Utah Real Estate Agent
Although there are many positives to working with a realtor, there are still a few downsides.
1. You will have to pay a commission. Hiring a full-service realtor can be pricey. You should expect to pay an average of 6% of the total sale price.
2. You may be one of many clients. Realtors make money when they sell houses. Therefore, they may have numerous clients that thinly spreads their time. You need to be sure your realtor will do their due diligence during every step of the buying process.
3. You may find yourself working within their time restraints. Most likely you have your own goals and timeframe for purchasing a home. You want to ensure your realtor can meet your standards and conduct business within an appropriate period of time.
4. Realtors are not lawyers or home appraisers. Realtors can give recommendations for the price tag on your home, but you will still need to hire an appraiser. Additionally, you may still want to get your lawyer involved to review the legality of the documentation.
Half the battle of working with a realtor is finding the right one. Unfortunately, many consumers don’t realize they have selected the wrong agent until it’s too late. Real estate agents can add a lot of value to the home buying process if you select the right one to match your needs. Making a poor choice could cost you time and money.
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