Home Buying Tips

Found 12 blog entries about Home Buying Tips.

Some homebuyers have asked if a National Brokerage has more homes to show them than a smaller Boutique Brokerage. Its human nature with the whole bigger is better concept to think this. The short answer to this question is NO. You see, as a brokerage that is a member of our local Multiple Listing Service (MLS) we all have access to the same information.

Multiple Listing Service

When a listing becomes available on the market, the listing agent enters it into our MLS. This system can best be described as our REALTOR database. Every agent of our local Board of Realtors has access to this. They can perform searches for you based on your specific criteria and send those results straight to your inbox for your review. You can also receive real-time

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real estate agent meeting with middle aged couple

So you are ready to start thinking about purchasing a home. Exciting! But wait, how will you get to see the homes that you are interested in? Who will write the contract for you? Who will help you with negotiations and repair requests?

A Buyer’s Agent

Your fantastic buyer’s agent will! What is a buyer’s agent, you ask? A buyer’s agent is a licensed real estate agent that will represent you and only you. Not you and the seller. (That’s a dual agent and we will talk about that later)

How Do I Find A Buyer’s Agent?

Great question! Chances are you probably know a handful of real estate agents in the Greater Baton Rouge already. Start there. These are people you know, like, and trust already. If you don’t know one already, do a quick google

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… And I Have No Home Shopping Privacy

If you have ever felt this way when viewing homes with your agent, you probably were being watched by the sellers. Your audio may have been recorded as well.

With the popularity of doorbell cameras and whole-home security cameras, sellers are watching your every move. Some sellers will watch for you to walk up to the front door and then unlock the door remotely. They know exactly how long you were there and if your agent left before you did. Yes, we have had sellers call to let us know it was very unsettling that the agent left before the potential buyer because the buyer sat in the driveway for a while after the agent had already left.

Inside the home, the security devices are not as easy to spot as

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A licensed home inspector will give you detailed information about the overall health of the home. The home inspection will include an in-depth, unbiased look at your potential new home. Here are a few things you should know.

inspector looking at flooring in baton rouge home

  1. Every home should be inspected
    Otherwise, you are relying on the seller to inform you of any deficiencies the home may have. In many cases, the seller isn’t even aware of these deficiencies. This includes new construction. Remember, humans, are still building houses. Mistakes happen.
  2. You hire the inspector
    Your real estate agent will have recommendations of inspectors they use consistently. It is still your right to choose and hire the inspector.
  3. It takes more than 30 minutes
    A typical home inspection of a 2,000 sq ft
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What does getting a "deal" on a home purchase mean to you?

Now that we have begun to enter into a buyer's market I have been hearing many prospective buyers talk about wanting to get a "deal" on their purchase. What exactly does that mean to you? Let's explore some of the "deal" options you may encounter.

Price

This is the first thing most people think of when they think of getting a deal in real estate. They want to know that they purchased a house for far less than not only the appraised value but less than fair market value. In reality, these types of deals just happen when there is a foreclosure that has occurred or possibly someone that has a lot of equity that needs to sell quickly to keep for losing the home or has had a drastic life

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Summertime Real Estate

Ah! Summertime…backyard barbeques, pool parties, family vacations, beach trips and my favorite, the smell of sunscreen. (I was a Florida kid)

Summertime is a busy time of year. Most families take their big vacations during the summer since the kids are out of school and the weather is favorable almost everywhere.

All those things are wonderful but can wreak havoc when trying to buy or sell a house during the summer. You see, the seller’s best selling seasons are Spring and Fall. When the summer kicks into gear, sellers want to have their house sold already so they can use the summer to get settled into their new home. This is especially true if they have kids.
As a buyer, you may not have much to choose from if you didn’t

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If you are a first-time homebuyer, this is a scary time for you.  You are about to make the most significant purchase of your life, and you are probably scared to make a final decision. What home is right for you?

Let us help you here with three powerful points to start:

  1. An ethical real estate agent will NEVER EVER pressure you into buying a house.
  2. You will instinctively know that you have found the right house. Trust your gut.
  3. You may want to “sleep on it” and make your decision the next day. DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT do this if your agent advises you not to.

Let’s talk about these three points a little bit more.

Your agent may tell you that there is much activity on the house and you should act fast. This information is not to

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You have decided to purchase a home. Congratulations!

The first thing you need to do is to hire a real estate agent.
How do you hire the right real estate agent?

1. Ask for referrals

Do you have friends or family that have recently purchased a home? They will have great recommendations for you.

2. Stalk them online!

Yes, you read that right! Look up the recommendations on all the social channels. Are they habitual negative posters? We all have bad days, so one or two venting posts are ok, but every other post is a clue about that person's personality. Purchasing a home is stressful enough, you don't need someone negative on your side.
What about the pictures? Do the images they post of themselves make you comfortable? Do you feel like this is

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One item that we see buyers and sellers squabble over is window treatments.

Buyers expect the window treatments to be in the house after they close and get very upset when they aren't. Sellers are trying to save some money and take the window treatments to their new home. Yikes!

Who is right?

In the Prairieville / Baton Rouge area, the purchase agreement states "all window coverings, blinds and associated hardware" will remain. This is pretty clear language. Maybe we have agents that aren't reviewing the purchase agreement clearly with the seller. With the age of digital signatures, I think that some of the reviews get lost, and some agents are leaving it up to their clients to read the offer in its entirety.

But they match my comforter!

baby hugging window treatments

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You are pre-approved and ready to write an offer on the house. This is the exciting part and also the most critical part. Here are some tips to help you write a strong offer.

Listen to your Agent

man and woman talking about a business contract

Your agent will run the comps in the area and review them with you before writing the offer. They will advise you on where to start with the price. Everyone wants a deal, but sometimes you just have to settle for paying fair market value. If you are in a seller's market, making an offer that is too low will negatively impact you. Another offer written more strongly may come in and knock you out of contention.

Do you really need all of those closing costs?

Lots of buyers in the Prairieville / Baton Rouge area are asking for all of their closing

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