Home Buying in Florida>Question Details

Lisa, Home Buyer in 33071

As a newbie first time home buyer, what should I expect from an agent?

Asked by Lisa, 33071 Fri Jun 6, 2008

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Dear Lisa,
We were in your shoes until two weeks ago. Our first agent dragged us around for over a month, our second found our dream home in a day. (And we're not the only family she helped in that way.) Everything the agents below wrote is true. I would emphasize the importance of the "gut feeling." Your intuition will be your best tool throughout this process. Also, whoever you choose is going to be your voice and face at the negotiation table, so make sure they "get" you, and that you're comfortable, and even proud, to be represented by them. Timeliness, good presentation, good grammar, warmth and integrity can make or break the deal. Thirdly, respect them. The good ones work like dogs. And finally, although everyone here says that buying a house is one of the most important decisions of your life, I think it's choosing an agent that really matters.
Good luck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
You should expect to sit down and have a thorough interview about your wants and needs. It may turn out that buying may not be the best option right now! Is there a chance that you may get transfered, go back to school, get married in the next couple of years?
Next, you need to get at least 2 opinions from mortgage consultants about how must house you can feel comfortable buying. You may not want to buy as much as you are approved for!
If possible, you want to work with a REALTOR who will have "single agency" with you. This means that they keep secret anything you tell them but share anything they learn about the sellers with you.

The most important thing I try to do is "under promise and over deliver"!

Best of luck in this buyers market!

1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
First and foremost is that you feel that you can ask anyquestion and get an honest forthright answer. A true expert never makes a questioner seem less than themselves.
Continuing with communication, the phone calls should be returned quickly without giving you any sense of beinig an bother. The agent should be able to give you good and clear understanding of what "agency" and "fiduciary" mean toi them. And it should be confirmed by you in your own investigation of those two terms.
Next knowledge of the market and they should also have friendly relationships with the other agents you meet as they show you homes. All the market knowledge in the world will be lost if everyone can't stand the person.
Ask for referals to lenders and see if you feel a level of trust from them also. good people tend to surround themselves with good people. Ask for stories of negotations done in the past, how did they protect a client, how did they gain an advantage for a client.
Finally eat a meal with them. Look at how they treat the staff. Professionals in service industries will sometime do what we used to call "retail revenge" and take out frustrations on other servers and clerks. If you see it you are dealing with a person that is putting up a false front to you. Deep down they resent being in service.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
Jed Lane; Fog…, Real Estate Pro in San Francisco, CA
To a great extent, trust your gut instinct as to who you feel comfortable. Your personaltiy and what you expect from your realtor will, to some extent determine who you want to work with. While this is a business decision, honesty and a good rapor are very important because during the process you have to feel comfortable in your communication style. As a first time homebuyer, the process of purchasing a home is unknown to you, so the agent will have to have patience in assisting you, and be able to explain in lay terms all the steps along the way. If you are a detail person (engineer type), you don't necessarity want an agent that is good with the "warm and fuzzy"--instead, just the facts, maam. On the other hand, if you are an agent who is emotional and "warm and fuzzy" you might want an agent who demonstrates patience and listening abilities. There are a lot of really good agents out there who are good at the nuts and bolts, but may not be a good personality match. You might test a couple of agents to see how good they are about responding to your phone calls--you want one that returns your calls readily and gets you answers to questions that you ask, because communication is going to be the key to your successful endeavor of buying your first home.
Web Reference: http://www.MykeTriebold.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
Dont be afraid to talk to several agents and find one that you feel comfortable with. Then ask them for several references of past clients, and get their experince. Also you don't one someone to always agree with you. Get someone who will tell you the truth even when you rather not hear it. Your agent should be able to prevent you from making emotional decisions when rational decisions are required.

1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
A good agent will make the complicated process simple by breaking it into easy steps. Get approved for you loan before you start looking. If you would like I can email you a homebuyer’s guide book.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
#1 Know thy self. You will have to find an agent who is someone you respond to with trust and who you like. Will that be an older woman (like a mom) that you feel OK about? Or someone more like yourself? Do you feel good with a high energy person, or someone who is slower paced?

Because you don't want to be upset or nervous about your decision if finding a home, the most important decision (beside picking a life mate) that you will make in your life at this moment in time.

With so many agents out there, you just need to spread the word that you are looking to buy a home...and agents will start appearing in your life. Then talk to a handful and pick that person who talks to you like caringly, who has the energy to keep showing you property and exploring your dreams; who understands the rightful fears you may have about money; and who knows that the first home you buy will not be your last.

I never made much money as a teacher....it was my real estate investments that ultimately made me financially secure...and I know that young folks today can still build their wealth through the right buys. So think of this lst purchase as the gateway to a great future. And congrats on being thoughtful enough to make that jump into home ownership while you are young.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 7, 2008
Thanks for all the responses. I knew that all my questions and wanting to see tons of properties wasn't in my imagination.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
Lisa, you probably have your own expectations of what you would like to find in a Realtor and I'd seek that out. As a Realtor, I feel its important to establish a trusting relationship afterall, this is probably one of the most important decisions that you'll make in your life. I would encourage communication in which your Realtor is listening to what it is that you want and not to lump you into a category with everybody else. High ethical standards would also be a must. I live, work and play here in Coral Springs and I'd be glad to help you should you decide. Visit one of my sites below to get a feel of what I'm about. Best wishes to you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
This is a great question. First time home buyers need a lot of information. Be sure that the agent you finally agree to work with is willing to spend the time to show you common problems with homes in your area. If you are buying an older home this is especially important. It also is helpful if your Realtor and your lender are compatable. Realtors are familiar with lenders and can often help you find one that is willing to find you the best arrangement for your financing.
If your Realtor is not willing to show you quiet a few homes in your price range he is not doing you a service. The home you purchase will be your decision so your Realtor needs to show you enough homes so that you know what your money will buy. His or her goal should be to find you the best house for the least money in the area you wish to buy in, this may take some time, but it is what he is being paid to do. The biggest problem I have with first home buyers is getting them to ask questions. Do not feel like you are calling him or her too often. They need to learn as much as possible about you so that they can make your real estate experience as painless as possible. They usually are full of information that would be helpful to you and would let you know that you got the best deal available in your price range. Good Luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
1. Disclose Agency Relationship To You
2. Willingness to Understand Your Real Estate Needs
3. Willingness to Achieve Your Real Estate Needs
4. Put Into Action The Agent's Experience To Get The Job Done
5. Alway express Honesty & Loyalty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 6, 2008
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