Monday, August 9, 2010

Where do I start? How about getting a real estate agent?

I’ve been gone so long and there’s so much to say that I don’t know where to start. Even though it sounds like a trite movie dialog, it quite sums up my feelings at this moment :-).

Primary reason for my absence has been our moving into our first house and all through the buying process I made a mental note to write about all the big and small things/tips that would help a first-time buyer. Though they’re coming back to me, they’re rushing from different directions.

The first and the foremost task at hand for a first time buyer is to get yourself a good real estate agent. By good I mean:

  • He/She should be very experienced in the specific area you’re buying the house in.
  • You should be comfortable talking to him/her.
  • Don’t hesitate to talk to her references.
  • He/She should not be pushy.
  • He/she should be very patient. They should let you take your time.
  • Available for you when you need them. If you want to look at the house on weekends, then make sure he/she is available on weekends.
  • Make sure he/she deals in real estate in your price range.

You should interview at least 3 real estate agents and then finalize on one. Whenever you’re selecting any servicemen, three is your magic number. Most of the above qualities you’ll come to know when you interview. If you find yourself not compatible with your agent during the house hunting process, don’t hesitate to switch. A real estate agent can make a huge difference in what kind of house you get and what price you pay.

Since I’m on this topic, I would like to post a recommendation for our realtor, Paula Sanford, for those in the Puget Sound area. She’s absolutely the best realtor one can find! Her experience in this area is simply astounding – which was a huge help. She knew what kind of architecture was prevalent in what decade and what was code then is not code now. The latter is immensely important. One visit to the house and she could tell why a decent house in a perfect neighborhood would not sell easily. Her knowledge of what sells and what doesn’t was very impressive and worked like a prediction during our house hunting process. We know that she always tried to get us the best deal and never hesitated to ask for anything on our behalf however small it maybe. Her philosophy “it never hurts to ask” is what you need in a good realtor. When we wrote an offer, she only gave us advice and left the final word on us and we know how right her advice was all through out. Once our offer was accepted, we never had to worry about the paperwork. She always had everything ready and if we’d to send something she would promptly send us a reminder. Paperwork seemed a breeze with her.Oh and she was so patient with our hunting. Being first time buyers, our requirements changed so much over the period; the house we bought is so different from the specifications we gave her.when we first met. She was always ready to take us to show a house and once she knew what we were looking for she would preview a house to screen it – isn’t that wonderful?!?! Ok, so now you know whom to contact if you want to buy a house here :-)