When Should I go about looking for an agent?

Asked by Greg, Florissant, MO Fri Jul 11, 2008

I Am looking at buying a house but am not sure when. I have had some issues with trying to scrape together a down payment and this has really hinderd me from really considering even looking. I am just wondering when is it appropriate to start speaking with agents.

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Dale Weir, Agent, Chesterfield, MO
Sat Jul 12, 2008
Start by talking to both a Realtor and a mortgage lender who are experienced with working with first time home buyers and who have the tools to help you. I typically start with my first time home buyers with a lot of education. Often we spend an hour in the office talking about what they can expect before we go out (but I recognize that they won't remember it all so I have handouts and booklets that they take away with them), then as we look at homes, I cover things again and continue the educational process. I have a lot of information on my website as well that they can refer to at any time, plus I'm available by phone and email to answer questions as they come up (and text message). I use lenders that mirror my style as well. I want to know that the first time home buyer understands what they are doing and is well educated and knows the pros and cons of their decisions and can make wise decisions. During the process we may start looking at homes a year out from when their lease is up or they graduate or whatever the "key" time line is, then we may go on "autopilot" for a bit while they do some research and watch the market and we get closer to when they actual are ready to make their move, then we pick up again - it all depends on them and their needs and goal and time line. Give me a call or check out my website at http://www.YourSTLHome.com.
Web Reference:  http://www.yourstlhome.com
0 votes
Daniel, , Baton Rouge, LA
Fri Jul 11, 2008
BEST ANSWER
after you get pre-qualified for a mortgage
0 votes
Terry Willis, Agent, O Fallon, MO
Fri Jul 11, 2008
Now is a great time to talk to a Realtor and get the answers to all of the questions you probably have about the home buying process - what to do first, then next and more importantly: what not to do. I have a booklet that describes the process for first time home buyers and would be happy to send it to you or give you it if you would like to schedule a get acquainted meeting. You may also benefit by letting me put you in touch with a lender who is familiar with the government grant programs for first time home buyers so you can be made aware of the help that is available for you now or in the future. There are two programs that come to mind that would cover your down payment and/or closing costs in Florissant. Feel free to check out some homes and a mortgage calculator on my web site http://www.TerryWillis.net and get more info about me, if you'd like. You can also contact me through it by email if you wish more detailed answers to any questions you may have. I would be happy to help you now or in the future-whenever you feel comfortable. A Realtor is not just someone you can talk to when you you are ready to spend money, but also to answer any questions about real estate or the buying process so that when you are ready to spend some money you have developed a relationship and are able to trust that person to advise you in your best interests. We aim to be our clients Realtor for life, not just one purchase.
Web Reference:  http://www.TerryWillis.net
0 votes
Marilyn Gibs…, Agent, Saint Charles, MO
Fri Jul 11, 2008
I suggest you visit a few open houses in the area where you would eventually like to purchase. Not only will you begin to learn about housing values, but you will meet some agents in the process. When you meet someone who is helpful but not pushy, and with whom you feel comfortable, talk to that agent about making a plan of action. There are home buyer mortgage programs that will help you with your down payment and closing costs, so you may be in a better position to purchase than what you think. I am available by phone (636-9836-2378) or email if you would like to contact me for more information. Florissant is a great community and I know it very well. I moved closer to my job last year, but previously lived in Florissant for 30 years, and my Mom still lives there. Best of luck to you, Greg.
Web Reference:  http://www.bestsellerstl.com
0 votes
Daniel Jeung, , Woodinville, WA
Fri Jul 11, 2008
I would suggest that now is the right time. If you find the right agent to assist you, he/she can guide you along the way. A good agent will ask lots of questions about your short/long term goals and provide you with a reality check on the market. It's okay if you're not ready to purchase right this minute. As long as you share this fact with your agent, and don't expect that he/she will show you lots of homes just for the fun of it, I can't think of any reason they would not want to help you.

Best of luck!

-Daniel
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