Although I'm not available, can I recommend that you first engage one of the Realtors below BEFORE looking at condominiums? Because, as Terri, pointed out, the Realtor's job is not just opening doors and getting inside the condo.
Here's some very good reasons why you want to select and HIRE a Realtor first:
1. Availability of Viewing - Not all homes are available for viewing by buyers. Often the home is occupied or the tenants/occupants may not want to show the home during a specific time of the day. The Realtor needs to make appointments to let the sellers know that they're coming. Remember, if you like the home, you want to start on the best possible "foot" with the seller--and be remembered as "that nice group of people" who toured my home and not the "group that barged in on Sunday to look at the house."
2. Not All Condos are Made Equal - Condominiums can be finicky real estate products depending on your financing and the condition of the community. If you are planning to purchase this home with an FHA loan, for example, there are many HOAs that do not qualify under the FHA guidelines, so even if you fell in love with the home, you won't be able to buy it. Also, there are comments made on the MLS that home buyers cannot and will not see, but can make a huge difference to you--as a buyer--regarding the feasibility of the home, such as special assessments planned, poor financials, developer is bankrupt, or litigation pending. Depending on what is happening at the community, the Realtor you select may let you know that the community may have problems you need to review before considering a home in the community.
3. Distressed Property Status - If you're interested in a distressed property, such as short sale, this information is often not posted on the MLS, but the Realtor can see this. Again, depending on the situation with short sale home, your agent will able to advise you regarding whether the home is a candidate for purchase.
So, before leaping out there to look at homes, take a few minutes to contact the Realtors below and interview them to select a Realtor who will work best for you and your family. I've known both Terri Vellios and Allyson Alessandrini for more than two years here on Trulia and I would have no hesitation in recommending either.
Area Pro Realty-People's Choice
Also, speak with one of us who understands and has experience with financing. As Grace said, not all condos are created equal. The type of financing you are planning to use may rule out many condos before you start looking at any of them. Maybe you have yet to talk to a loan office who can explain what your options are and what you can afford? This is most important. I am both a loan officer for a bank and a realtor. (This means I can originate any loan but an FHA, and can find and assist you with any type of property. If you need an FHA, the branch manager at my bank will take care of your loan for you.)
I also give Grace a big thumbs up for her answer. I don't cover the San Jose market but the process is the same in any community in the Bay Area -- work with a realtor for the reasons suggested by Grace. And make sure you understand your financing based on an analysis by a lender and financial planner.
When you are ready, find a realtor you like and stick with them. It's an involved process and the closer you work together as a team, the better your overall success!
Good luck, and I hope you find a realtor that is right for you.
Livermore, Pleasanton, Dublin areas
Looking for a home is much more fun when you know how much you can actually afford. That's the first step I recommend. The second is developing a budget based on your net income to determine if the amount you're approved for is realistic. Just because a lender will loan you $400,000 doesn't mean your lifestyle can support the payments. I provide my clients with the tools to help them figure out all the details. As others have said, hiring a Realtor is more than having someone show you a few homes. Take a few minutes to get you know your agent. When they understand you, the home search will go much smoother.
Good Luck with your search.
Take a few minutes to look at my website and read about my qualifications. http://www.lizsenser.com.
Please feel free to contact me.
I hope that helps, feel free to contact me with any questions.
At your service,
CDPE- Certified Distressed Property Expert
I can also discuss financing he purchase with you as well.
My phone number is 408-639-0211
I am available Sunday 1/15/2012.
Please give me a call at my cell phone: (408)509-6218 or contact me at my email address: email@example.com
Real Estate Broker/REALTOR
Cell Phone: (408)509-6218
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dot Chance, RealtorÂ®
Certified Distressed Property Expert â€“ CDPEÂ®
DRE License #01494182
Keller Williams Realty World Media Center
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