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Powell Properties has the experience & know-how to help you find the perfect home or sell your property.
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If you’re looking to buy or sell a home, feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. We will do our best to help you find that perfect home or sell your property at the right price. Powell Properties has you covered. Fill out the form below or reach out to us at (903) 593 – 9500
Use a Buyer’s Agent
It’s important that you choose an experienced agent who is there for you. Your agent should be actively finding you potential homes, keeping you informed of the entire process, negotiating furiously on your behalf, and answering all of your questions with competence and speed.
First, find an agent who represents you and not the seller. This is beneficial during the negotiation process. If you are working with a buyer’s agent, he or she is required not to tell the seller of your top choice. In addition, he or she is also focused on getting you the lowest asking price. Also, when you use a buyer’s agent, you will see more properties. Not only are they plugged into their MLS, but they are also actively finding homes that are listed as For Sale Buy Owner or homes that sellers are thinking about listing.
Getting a Legitimate Lender and Getting Pre-Approved
It used to be that buyers could go house shopping and when they have found their dream home, then they go to get pre-approved. However, in today’s market, that has proven to be one of the least effective methods in landing the dream home.
Most lenders can pre-qualify you for a mortgage over the phone. Based on general questions about your income, debt, assets and credit history, lenders can estimate how much mortgage you qualify for. However, being pre-qualified and pre-approved are different things. Pre-approval means that you have applied for a mortgage; you have filled out the mortgage application, received your credit report, have verified your employment, assets..etc. When you are pre-approved, you know exactly what the maximum loan amount will be.
A pre-qualified letter is not verified and in essense, does not count for much if you are competing with other buyers who are pre-approved. When you are pre-approved, you and the seller know exactly how much house you can afford. It gives you credibility as an interested buyer sand lets the seller know immediately that you will qualify for a loan to buy their property.
In addition to being pre-approved, it’s important to be pre-approved with a legitimate lender. Legitimate lenders include: banks, mortgage bankers, credit unions, savings and loan associations, mortgage brokers, and online lenders. Some lenders to avoid: Those who lose a form or misplace a file, those who gather information from you in an unorganized manner, those who are not informed about interest rates, points or costs, and those who cannot provide you with the right information.
Build a Plan of Action and Get Ready
Buying a home will probably rank as one of the biggest personal investments one can make. Being organized and in control will contribute significantly to getting the best home deal possible with the least amount of stress. It’s important to anticipate the steps required to successfully achieve your housing goal and to build a plan of action that gets you there. Before you can build a plan of action, take the time to lay the groundwork for your decision-making process.
First, ask yourself how much you can afford to pay for a home. If you’re not sure on the price range, find a lender and get pre-approved. Pre-approval will let you know how much you can afford so that you can look for homes in your price range. Getting pre-approved helps you to alleviate some of the anxieties tha tcome with home buying. You know exactly what you qualify for and at what rate, you know how large your monthly mortgage payments will be, and you know how much you will have for a down payment. Once you are pre-approved, you avoid the frustration of finding homes that you think are perfect, but are not in your price range.
Second, ask yourself where you want to live and what is the best location for you and/or your family. Things to consider:
- convenience for all family members
- proximity to work, school
- crime rate of neighborhood
- local transportation
- types of homes in neighborhood, for example condos, town homes, co-ops, newly constructed homes etc.
Importance of Inspection
As a buyer, you are entitled to know exactly what you are getting. Don’t take for granted what you see and what the seller or the listing agent tells you. A professional home inspection is something you MUST do, whether you are buying an existing home or a new one. An inspection is an opportunity to have an expert look closely at the property you are considering purchasing and getting both an oral and written opinion as to its condition.
Beforehand, make sure the report will be done by a professional organization, such as a local trade organization or a national trade organization such as ASHI (American Society of Home Inspection). Not only should you never skip an inspection, but you also should go along with the inspector during the inspection. This gives you a chance to ask questions about the property and get answers that are not biased. In addition, the oral comments are typically more revealing and detailed than what you will find on the written report. Once the inspection is complete, review the inspection report carefully.
You have to demand an inspection when you present your offer. It must be written in as a contingency; if you do not approve the inspection report, then you don’t buy. Most real estate contract automatically provide an inspection contingency
Getting the Highest Price in the Shortest Time:
In order to get the highest price in the shortest time, you need to know how to market your home. The better you market your home, the more offers you will get. And the more offers you get, the more choices you have to get the price and terms you want.
The most important factor of marketing your home is pricing it right. Your price should be adjusted to reflect the market, and the property’s worth. The key is to get many people checking out your property at a fair price instead of having no buyers because your price is set too high.
Another important factor is the condition of your home. Make sure that your home looks ready to be sold. Fix any defects (peeling or faded paint, cracks, stains..etc) Condition alone can sometimes prompt fast buying decisions. Not only should you fix any defects, but consider upgrading your home by making major repairs and cosmetic improvements before selling. A nice home triggers the emotional response that can lead to a financial response. Learn how to negotiate the best terms for all parties involved. Terms are another factor which may be adjusted to attract buyers. If you insist on getting your asking price, think of what you can offer to the buyers – for example, improvements you’ve made, or even offering seller financing at a lower than market interest rate on a portion of the sale price. Convince them why they should be paying the price you have set.
Lastly, get the buzz out of your home. List your house with a hot agent that ensures your house is listed on the MLS and on the internet. On your own, get word out. It should be visible to passerby’s that your house is for sale, whether it be signs, local advertisements or you telling friends, family and acquaintances.
Making a Good First Impression
If you want buyers to be interested in your home, you need to show it in its best light. A good first impression can influence a buyer into making an offer; it influences a buyer emotionally and visually. In addition, what the buyer first sees is what they think of when they consider the asking price.
A bad first impression can dissuade a potential buyer. Don’t show you property until it’s all fixed up. You do not want to give buyers the chance to use the negative first impression they have as a means of negotiation.
Ask around for the opinions other have of your property. Real Estate Agents who see houses everyday can give solid advice on what needs to be done. Consider what architects or landscape designers have to say. What you need are objective opinions, and it’s sometime hard to separate the personal and emotional ties you have for the home from the property itself.
Typically, there are some general fix ups that need to be done both outside and on the inside. As a seller, you should consider the following:
- Landscaping – Has the front yard been maintained? Are areas of the house visible to the street in good condition?
- Cleaning or Redoing the driveway – Is your driveway cluttered with toys, tools, trash etc.?
- Painting – Does both the exterior and the interior look like they have been well taken care of?
- Carpeting – Does the carpet have stains? Or does the carpet look old and dirty?
Setting the Price
The price is the first thing buyers notice about your property. If you set your price too high, then the chance of alienating buyers is higher. You want your house to be taken seriously, and the asking price reflects how serious you are about selling your home.
Several factors will contribute to your final decision. First, you should compare your house to others that are in the market. If you use an agent, he/she will provide you with a Comparative Market Analysis. The CMA will reflect the following:
- houses in your price range and area sold within the last half-year
- asking and selling prices of houses
- current inventory of houses on the market
- features of each house on the market
From the CMA, you will find out the difference between the asking price and selling price for all homes sold, the condition of the market, and other houses comparable to yours.
Also, try to find out what types of houses are selling and see if it applies to your area. Buyers follow trends, and these trends can help you set your price. Always be realistic. And understand and set your price to reflect the current market situation.
Finding the Right Agent
Not all agents work the same way. The most important attribute of an agent is that he/she is well connected to the real estate industry. He/she should know the market and provide information on past sales, current listings, his or her marketing plan, and at least 4 solid references. In addition, you also want to look for an agent that is honest, assertive, and one that best understands your needs.
Try to go with a local agent. They can better serve your needs; they are familiar with what the local market condition is, the local prices are, and what’s hot or not in your community.