When a REALTOR agrees to help a homeowner sell their home, they also agree that only qualified buyers will be entering the home. Owners do not want their home on the 'entertainment' circuit of lookey-loos, tire-kickers, and nosy neighbors or the competitor down the street.
This is achieved by professionals having an EXPECTATION that other professional are doing their job and verifying their buyer is financially able to make a purchase. This is STEP #1 of every buyer agent training.
As you can see from the responses, many buyer agents are failing to uphold their end of the expectation and parading unqualified buyers through the private residences of expectant sellers.
If I know you have not been vetted as a buyer, and want to enter the home of a buyer who has hired me to help them, you will not be granted access.
This is a business, not a hobby.
If you are a serious buyer, get your money in order, then start looking.
Agents have been schooled to make the best use of their time possible....this includes working with only buyers that are considered, "serious buyers!" Being pre-approved for financing takes the buyer's level of seriousness up a notch.
Just keeping it real!
If you are looking for information on the local market and you feel viewing homes is the best way to get it, then go to open houses or model homes in new home subdivisions and don't put sellers and agents into non-productive time situations if you are not serious about making a purchase.
That aside, understanding the mortgage process is pretty critical in making a good decision. When you buy a home, you are also buying the money to buy the home from the bank and you need to spend a great deal of time understanding the best mortgage for your situation.
We wrote an article which goes into far more depth here -
But in this market, if you are interested in Buying, you want to be ready to make an offer at the drop of a hat:
The house you are looking at today, will not be available when you finally get qualified.
So you are wating your time, and everyone else's by looking now.