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Do you belong to a professional association?
There are many associations for home inspectors, but some groups confer questionable credentials or certifications in return for nothing more than a fee. Make sure the association your home inspector names is a reputable, nonprofit trade organization.
Will your report meet all state requirements?
Also, make sure the organization complies with a well-recognized standard of practice and code of ethics, such as those adopted by the American Society of Home Inspectors or the National Association of Home Inspectors.
How experienced are you?
Ask inspectors how long they’ve been working in the field and how many inspections they’ve completed. Also ask for customer referrals. New inspectors may be highly qualified, but they should describe their training and indicate whether they work with a more experienced partner.
How do you keep your expertise up to date?
Inspectors’ commitment to continuing training is a good measure of their professionalism and service. Advanced knowledge is especially important with older homes or those with unique elements requiring additional or updated training.
Do you focus on residential inspection?
Home inspection is very different from inspecting commercial buildings or a construction site. Ask whether the inspector has experience with your type of property or feature. The inspector should be able to provide sample inspection reports for a similar property. If they recommend further evaluation from outside contractors on multiple issues, it may indicate they’re not comfortable with their own knowledge level.
Do you offer to do repairs or improvements?
Some state laws and trade associations allow the inspector to provide repair work on problems uncovered during the inspection. However, other states and associations forbid it as a conflict of interest.
How long will the inspection take?
On average, an inspector working alone inspects a typical single-family house in two to three hours; anything less may not be thorough.
Costs range from $300 to $500 but can vary dramatically depending on your region, the size and age of the house, and the scope of services. Be wary of deals that seem too good to be true.
Will I be able to attend the inspection?
The answer should be yes. A home inspection is a valuable educational opportunity for the buyer and a refusal should raise a red flag.
Source: National Association of REALTORS®
Know that there’s no “right” time to buy.
If you find the perfect home now, don’t risk losing it because you’re trying to guess where the housing market and interest rates are going. Those factors usually don’t change fast enough to make a difference in an individual home’s price.
Don’t ask for too many opinions.
It’s natural to want reassurance for such a big decision, but too many ideas from too many people will make it much harder to make a decision. Focus on the wants and needs of the people who will actually be living in the home.
Accept that no house is ever perfect.
If it’s in the right location, the yard may be a bit smaller than you had hoped. The kitchen may be perfect, but the roof needs repair. Make a list of your top priorities and focus in on things that are most important to you. Let the minor ones go. Also, accept that a little buyer’s remorse is inevitable and will most likely pass.
Don’t try to be a killer negotiator.
Negotiation is definitely a part of the real estate process, but trying to “win” by getting an extra-low price or refusing to budge may cost you the home you love.
Remember your home doesn’t exist in a vacuum.
Don’t get so caught up in the physical aspects of the house itself that you forget about important issues such as noise level, access to amenities, and other aspects that also have a big impact on your quality of life.
Don’t wait until you’ve found a home to get approved for a mortgage, investigate insurance, or consider a moving schedule. Being prepared will make your bid more attractive to sellers.
Choose a home first because you love it; then think about appreciation.
A home is still considered a great investment, but its most important role is as a comfortable, safe place to live.
Source: National Association of REALTORS®
The real estate industry lost a number of real estate professionals in past years because there were not enough sales to support them. Many have remained in the business, but on a part time basis. They’ve been forced to take another job just to make ends meet. As the market continues to improve, many of these folks will return to the business full time.
If you are considering a career in real estate or returning to the business, then check us out at www.TopofKnox.com.
Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® is a network of 565 of the very best real estate firms that are located in 65 countries. These firms have 4,100 offices with 130,000 sales associates. In 2016 these firms had sales valued at over $368 billion dollars, representing 1.1 million transactions, which placed Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® #1 in sales volume in the United States.
Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® outperformed all other national brands by 62 billion in sales.
When buying or selling property, select a member firm such as Ferguson Realtors to assist you.
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These tips came from a survey of 400 real estate professionals. These items are listed in order of importance, from most to least.
- Get a home inspection to evaluate the safety and overall condition of the home
- Before you start your house hunting, get pre-approved for a mortgage
- Direct all communications with the seller through your real estate agent
- Get all agreements with the seller in writing
- Include important contingences in your offer, such as, financing and inspections
- Come up with realistic expections for a house based upon your budget
Source: Market Leader.com