I'm a REALTOR in Iowa. I also SOLD Real Estate in Southern California for years. Here is the hard truth! Some people buy and sell homes honestly and successfully with little or no help regardless of the state they live in (other than the services that are required by Law) However, many people have the misconception that REALTORS don't really do that much... and with all the technology, websites and services that assist both Buyers and Sellers they feel they can navigate very safely on their own.
Buyers, beware...Not all Sellers are honest and the FSBO companies that many Seller's pay money to are not even licensed in the Real Estate Industry and/ or secretly hope that you fail in hopes to get the listing. (this is not always the case but I'm just saying)
For example the seller has hired and paid for a FSBO company to take photos, gave them signs to use, puts the home on a website so the sellers get more leads. Some even have an Attorney that will assist both the Seller and the Buyer with the paperwork process!!!
Sounds great right...?
Yes! BUT>>> Buyer Beware again! Where is the Real Estate professional that will ensure that all the documents that need to be completed are not only completed but truly explained to you! A buyer's agent cares about a smooth transaction and usually cares about you and your families best interest. Where is the Buyer's Agent to ensure that you don't overpay for the Home you are purchasing.
Wait backup... A good Buyer's agent will communicate with your lender too in order to ensure that everything is in order before you make an offer so you don't hurt yourselves or purchase of the property.
Seller's are not always honest about when they did certain upgrades to the home etc. and a buyer's agent will do their best to ask the right questions etc. and knows what steps to take to protect you! Example you are planning to buy a home and you find "the one" you are super excited and the sellers are so nice and you even know some folks in town that know these people etc. (maybe you've even seen the Seller's Property Disclosure) You feel totally confident in purchasing this property...
Things that can go wrong...
* Buyer's get too egger sometimes and are afraid that they might not get a HOME in a competitive market so they try to make their offer quickly and sometimes they decide not to do inspections.
(* A buyer's agent would protect you by keeping you grounded and reminding you that it's probably best to do your inspections.)
*A seller has informed you verbally that the roof is probably about 10 years old, you are in LOVE with this home and make a full priced offer... inspection time comes and it turns out the roof is OLDER than what the seller thought, now the whole deal may go south.
(*buyer's agents are trained to try to avoid things like this and a good one often can and will look out for all kinds of RED flags and take the precautions that are necessary for all parties.)
Behind the scenes of a Real Estate Transaction*
Seller Beware: Appraisal Value is not market value and you should at least hire a REALTOR to tell you what to sell your home for! Just be honest that you intend to list it for sale by owner but you want to know how to PRICE IT RIGHT!
There is a lot more paperwork that goes into most Real Estate transactions that most people think and things from a Buyer's past (or Even a present situation) or a Seller's past can put a quick halt to a Real Estate Transaction... Judgements, Leins, things from a divorce, Bankruptcy, job related issues, finances and more.... Something as simple as a typo can cause an issue for one or both parties depending on the circumstances.... It's hard to get into details but the point is that a lot of REALTORS have dealt with these issues and others and they know how to fix things or whom to call for help and they can make things go so much more smoothly!
Lots of people are Selling by Owner and the Buyer doesn't have a REALTOR either and this combination can be a recipe for disaster. Each party is out for their own best interest and I've seen so many times where the Seller didn't get their OFFER in writing or there were loop holes and then they are putting their house right back on the market. (wasting time and money)
The Professional Real Estate Process of Buying and Selling was established for a REASON!
Some Buyer's and or Seller's may even have the documents that are needed but ensuring that each party really knows their rights in the transaction and having everything done correctly is a different story!
Not every transaction goes smoothly for a buyer or a seller!!! Remember that!
Buyer's you usually don't have to pay a REALTOR!... more
Hi Laura.....I just came across this question so hopefully since Oct. 2016 you have your answer. I just recently had a Certificate of Compliance inspection in Woodbridge, and not only did the inspector check the fire/carbon alarms as well as the fire extinguisher, he actually opened up the electrical panel in the basement. There were GFI's already in the house.
All Towne Realty
Cell: 908-902-9198... more
Also, understand that you will never get the appreciation in value on a condo/townhouse that you would get from a house not part of the planned community.
As long as the builder is building .... nobody will want to buy your house. Why buy a lived in house, when the builder will sell you a brand new one for $5,000 more ..... or even perhaps $5,000 less than what you paid for yours.