Frequently Asked Questions About Real Estate
Here you will find the most frequently asked questions about real estate. We will cover questions that cover selling your home, buying a home, getting a mortgage, and more.
When is the best time to sell my home?
Every real estate market is different, therefore, the best time to sell a home will be different in each community. Generally speaking, the spring months are often the best time to sell a home.
Since every home seller’s situation is different, you should discuss the timing of your home sale with your REALTOR. They are attuned to the market and can best advise you on the timing. Read our seller’s guide.
How much is my home worth?
To begin with, don’t trust Internet models and prices to determine your home’s value. These automated valuation models are done by a machine, and don’t account for many important factors that contribute to value. Use an experienced REALTOR to help you determine a starting list price and to make important recommendations on preparing your home for sale. They can help you to get top dollar and shorten the waiting time for an acceptable contract.
What is the selling process?
One of the best perks of working with a real estate agent, is we help you every step of the way. There will be no guessing on your part. We do the market research to list your home, make suggestions to prepare your home for the market, in some cases even stage the home, to negotiations. Read our seller’s guide to learn more about our creative marketing strategies. Then contact us to get your home on the market.
Does staging a home really help?
Yes, it does. We have six certified staging professionals on our team. In our experience, staging a home helps it be more attractive to potential buyers. It doesn’t mean you have to spend tons of extra money on staging. Choosing an agent who knows how to work within your budget and offer fast and simple staging tips is essential to a quick and easy sale. Many staging tips are inexpensive or even free.
Our certified stagers are:
How much home can I afford?
Great question! The answer to this varies and is unique to each buyer and their financial situation. Your REALTOR can help you with this by recommending top-rated local lenders who can prequalify or preapprove you in advance of searching for a home. Once you’ve completed this critical step, you will know exactly what your maximum price limit is, what type of loan(s) you qualify for, how much your down payment will be if there is one, your interest rate, your closing costs, and a good idea of what your monthly payment will be.
How long does it take to close on a home?
This depends on the seller’s ability to move out and turn over the home, and on the buyer’s ability to produce the money to purchase it. A cash sale is very simple and could close in a week if the house is ready. More typically, a loan takes about 30-45 days to process. This provides the buyer with an opportunity to adequately inspect the home and provides enough time for the seller to pack up and move out if necessary.
What do you think the seller will accept as a fair price?
That depends on whether the home is fairly priced or not, and the motivation level of the Seller. It’s best not to generalize or over think this based on Internet advice or formulas. An experienced REALTOR working as your buyer’s agent is trained to perform a comparable market analysis that will help you to understand at what price the home should have been listed. He or she can then help you interpret this data and prepare an offer that’s based on actual home sales.
Once I get ready to buy a home in Valdosta, how long does it take to find a one?
This depends on how long you prefer to look. In our area it is not difficult to see most of the homes in your price range and area in 2 or 3 days. Because your agent makes you a priority you may find a special place in less than that! It is always a good idea to narrow your search down to your top 3 choices and return for a second look. Many times number 3 might move to number 1 with a return visit! Read our buyers guide.
Will my agent make recommendations when I make my offer?
If your agent will be representing you they should be able to help you make a good offer. Your offer should be based on information gathered from the neighborhood in which you want to purchase. Information should include what similar homes are selling for, what the sellers are contributing in concessions and how long the property has been on the market.
Do I need to call the agent on the sign in front of the home?
The agent on the sign represents the seller. As a buyer it is important to have representation as well. Calling the agent on the sign is not a bad idea but remember that any agent can help you with any home, whether it is their listing or not. A good suggestion would be to find an agent you feel will work for you and stick with that agent. He or she can show you any home in the area.
How should my agent communicate with me?
Remembering that the purchase of a home or even an investment property is a very important decision the communication should be as you prefer. Make sure to let your agent know what you prefer such as text, email or phone conversation. Sharing information such as dates or times is fine by text but other times you may need to have a discussion when making offers. It is very important that your agent understands the importance of timely communication.
Will I need to come into the office to make my offer.
Most agents use electronic documents now so that you will sign by email. Communication is still a key issue. You want the opportunity to ask questions about the paperwork and have plenty of time to understand exactly what you are signing.
Is it important to get a home inspection?
A professional home inspection is a picture of the home on the day of the inspection. An experienced inspector will be able to tell you only what he/she sees at the time of the inspection. When making your offer make sure you have the opportunity for a home inspections as well as the chance to negotiate any needed immediate repairs.
Now that you have read over our frequently asked questions about real estate, if you still have questions that are unanswered, contact us and we will be happy to answer them.