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As a First Time Buyer, How do I choose a Real Estate Agent?!

 

If you are anything like us, the thought of buying your first home is an exciting one! That Pinterest board labeled, “My House” begins to fill up at a rapid pace after hearing those words “Your Approved!”  Whether you love the cozy cottage feel, the modern craftsman, or the sleek masculine style home, I think we can all agree that we have a style of home that draws us in and gives us that “I feel at home” feeling.

 

As a first time buyer, would you like to have that same kind of “I feel at home” feeling when working with your Real Estate agent?

With so many Real Estate agents working in the market today, how do you narrow down the list to find who will best suite you? You may have a friend or possibly a family member working in the industry, but does this automatically mean they are the right fit for you? Do you sit down and scroll through social media pages looking for someone who looks market forward, fashionable, and who may have a Five star rating with Google?

Before you start rushing over to Instagram and start flipping through profiles, take a step back and think about what YOU as the buyer, need from your agent. What are your goals as an individual looking to buy for the first time?

What kind of service and attention do you feel you need as the potential client?

With so many questions whirling around in your head, it can seem like an overwhelming task. We are here to offer some tips on what to look for in an agent when starting you home buying adventure!

 

1. In what location are you looking to buy your first home?

Knowing the answer to this question can narrow down the number of agents significantly! Someone who has the expertise in that specific town or city is very important. To be sure you receive the best care possible, start by doing your research! If possible, talk to some of the home owners in that area to get a better feel for the neighborhood. These home owners may also be very helpful in passing along any information on who the “neighborhood expert” may be.

 

2. What kind of service and attention are you looking for from your real estate agent?

This can be a huge factor in who you may decide to use as your real estate agent. Character and personality are very important, as some agents will mesh with you in a stronger way than others. While most agents will advertise “amazing customer service” or “we always put our clients first” not all agents will bring the same energy or commitment toward making sure YOUR needs are met. We suggest “interviewing” a few agents to get a feel for the differences there are and what game plan they may offer you. A good way to simply “Vet” a real estate agent is by paying attention to the questions they ask YOU! Are they interested in you and your personal life style? Have they mentioned or noticed that you have a pet who is very much a part of your life? How committed are they to staying strictly to the budget you have set?  Have they asked you what kind of hobbies you may have, or if you are in need of extra space to accommodate your family when they come to visit? What makes you, you, is very important! When your agent is mindful of your wants and needs this will then transfer into what kind of homes they may choose to show you.

 

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3. Be sure to choose an agent who will negotiate on your behalf!

When the time comes to put together an offer on what might end up being your first home, having an agent with exceptional negotiation skills is key! Someone who is mindful of the budget you have set for yourself, is someone who in turn will negotiate on your behalf to get you the best price possible. Having an agent who can skillfully assist you as their client toward making the best decision, is an agent that will be bring great value to the table when purchasing your home.

 

4. ALWAYS check, and double check the past experiences that others may have had with the agent you are looking to hire. 

Chances are pretty high that you will be referred to an agent from someone you know, but again just because you have been referred to them, does not mean they are the right fit for you. Be sure to do your research in any case to make sure that you are going to be taken care of by your real estate agent! The experience of buying your first home is very exciting, and should be a positive one. With the help of a knowledgeable, welcoming, warm, and confident real estate agent, the “I feel at home” feeling will go from a dream to a reality!

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5 Easy Ways to Boost Your Curb Appeal

There are some people out there that can see all the potential in a home regardless of its current visual state (myself included). But in my experience, this is definitely the minority of the population! Even easy fixes like paint colors can completely deter potential buyers away from the homes they are viewing. And when preparing your home for sale for these types of buyers, boosting curb appeal is a top priority. The view of the front of your home from the street is the very first impression for all potential buyers and in this case, first impressions mean everything

When preparing to sell your home, it is all about easy updates that make a big difference. These are my top recommendations for easy, cost effective ways to boost the curb appeal and resale value of your home.

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