The buying adventure
Starting the process of buying a house usually starts with just the idea.
Perhaps it's something you saw on TV, maybe you are tired of paying rent, or maybe you just feel it's just time to start hard-core "Adulting".
Regardless of the WHY, this is when folks start to explore. They watch lots of those 'House finding' shows on T.V. (You know which network I'm talking about. ;) ) On a more close to home level, a prospective buyer may start looking at what we call "Secondary websites" like that one that starts with a Z and rhymes with pillow. (Really, who doesn't like looking at what ridiculous carpet that lady down the street has in her house that is for sale?! lol)
Exploring places like this is a great way to learn and build on an idea.... but there are a lot of Missing things from those TV shows and websites that are completely normal and part of a buyer's Real Estate Journey.
So what are you missing?
That's easy-Your Buying support team.
The Who and why?
A buying support team is comprised of your Buyer's agent and your Lender. Both of which are important to find early in the process.
The buyer's agent (whose commission is usually paid by the seller!!) works on your behalf to guide, support, educate, and negotiate among other things. They teach you about the local market, help you create a plan to achieve your purchasing goals, and work with the lender behind the scenes. You will have a business relationship that requires a document called a Buyers agency contract. I like to call this a "house marriage". The buyer's agent in the relationship will do MANY things including work on the buyer's behalf to protect, support and guide.... and in return, the buyer will be an avid communicator/participant and not cheat on the Realtor with another agent. lol
To read more about Buyers Agency, Check out this article, or enquire with this agent.
The Buyer's agent helps to teach you the REAL side of real estate, even BEFORE the process of writing an offer. This includes helping you find a great local lender if you don't have one yet, setting expectations and goals, and getting you ready to be a productive buyer. They also will give you direct access to the Realtors MLS with something called a client portal. This allows buyers to see properties the DAY they go on the market. Secondary websites are notoriously out of date and also contain a lot of misleading content. Serious buyers need serious data!
Need to find a kick-ass Buyer's agent? Here ya go!
The Lender is an equally important part of your buying tool kit. What Lender you use can have a major impact on any offer you write, just like an offer price would. Working with a preferably local lender who has a large portfolio of loans really can help make you successful. Having someone nearby really helps streamline communication, planning, and problem-solving.
And here is the thing that TV shows DON'T tell you...
A LOT of people do NOT get a pre-approval right off the bat!
A good portion of buyers will require planning time with lending. It's completely normal!!
The prospective buyer may need to build up their credit or save up some money for the process. Perhaps these things are in line, and they just want to level up to the better interest rate. A great lender is going to guide you through the many stages, products available, and how to make you successful!