How to Buy a Home
Find a Good Realtor
Researching on the internet is a great start, but it can be like working your way through a maze. A realtor will give you a bird's eye view of the labyrinth of the home buying process and make sure that you don't become tangled up with any minotaurs. Look for these qualities in a Realtor:
- Integrity: The first thing you want is a person who is going to tell you the truth. Buying a home can be a harrowing process in and of itself - you don't need to worry about the consequences of hidden facts, false information, or deceiving opinions.
- Professional: [pruh-fesh-uh-nl] a person who is expert at his or her work (dictionary.com). There are a lot of people in the world who see an opportunity in a career field that seems fun, easy, or lucrative. Being a Realtor can be these things, but, just as with any other profession in the world where other people's time and money is in personal care and trust, it takes dedication, commitment, and real knowledge. Guiding a client through the home-buying process is like being a river guide - they must know where the pitfalls, rapids, and hidden obstacles lie else they risk sinking the boat. You want to find someone who treats their job like a full-time career, not a past-time or hobby.
- Knowledge: This goes right along with being a professional, or an expert in a given field. Make sure they know the local market, market trends, neighborhoods, negotiations, contracts, and standard procedures.
- The first step is to find a mortgage lender. The best way to do this is to ask someone. Chances are a friend, relative, or colleague used a mortgage lender who they trust and had a great experience with. Real Estate agents are also great sources for finding a lender; we work with lenders hand-in-hand with our clients and we only work with lenders who we trust and are professional. Ask us for a referral or go to to our Featured Partners link on our home page or here: http://www.youralaskahomesearch.com/featuredpartners/
- Once you've established a price range to work with, you can start shopping for homes. This might be overwhelming, but here are some tips to narrow it down:
- Decide what your needs are...how many rooms/bathrooms do we need? How big of a house do we need? Where do we want to live? Once you've answered some of these basic questions, you will have narrowed down your search criteria significantly.
- Use your search tool on our website to input your criteria, see pictures, details, community information, market trends, etc. Put yourself on a Listing Alert so that when homes come on the market that fit your criteria they will be automatically e-mailed to you. Speak with your agent about your listing alerts to make sure it is realistic for the area you are looking in.
- When you see home online that you want to set up a showing for, drive by it first. You may see it from the outside in person and know immediately it is not what you want.