Selling Your House?

Selling Your House?

5 Important Questions Buyers Must Run Past Real Estate Agents

by Steven Stephens

The home buying process is often so fraught with delays that buyers may feel pressured to make a purchase without taking everything into consideration. The need to get into a home quickly, however, can land buyers in a world of hurt from not asking the right questions. Real estate agents can use their expertise in this realm to provide buyers with a clear outlook on the property condition, neighborhood details and associated costs. Buyers should go through the following list of inquiries before committing to the purchase to avoid any missteps.  

Did This Home Recently Pass Inspection?

Not all homes on the market require an inspection before sale. In fact, in many areas, only lenders actually require an inspection before issuing a loan for its purchase. Even without the lender requirement, it is highly risky to purchase a home without having an inspection performed.

The inspection verifies the home meets local building codes, including fire safety laws. Furthermore, inspections confirm the foundation, roof and plumbing components are in good shape and work as expected. Without this verification, you could end up in a home that needs immediate extensive repairs to make it livable.

Does This Property Sit On A Flood Zone?

It is obvious that properties sitting on the edge of a riverbank constantly face the risk of potential flooding during the rainy season. However, did you know that homes sitting far from bodies of water might still sit firmly in the middle of a flood zone?

It's true. Floodwaters don't just originate from bodies of water. The flood zones may result from poor drainage capabilities of the soil, excessive groundwater stores or unfortunate topography filled with dips and divots. Luckily, you can request detailed flood zone maps for that specific area from your real estate agent.

Does The Neighborhood Have An HOA?

Depending on your expectations for your living space, you may embrace or shy away from home owners associations, or HOAs. Either way, you need to know if one exists in the neighborhood of your potential home.

Even when okay with the idea of an HOA, it pays to look over the rules governing that neighborhood. Some of the associations have rules that control your lawn height and type of outdoor decor allowed, while others simply put a limit on the number and type of vehicles residing at your home. Despite the restrictions, HOAs often protect the property values in the neighborhood by keeping individual residences in perfect condition.

Can You Estimate The Closing Costs?

On average, real estate closing costs typically sit firmly between two to five percent of the total value of the home. Unfortunately, lenders, title companies and inspectors can add a plethora of fees to the base amount to bring the closing costs far above expectations. Real estate agents gladly estimate the closing costs to give their buyers a realistic outlook on the total price of the house and property.

What Are The Expected Property Taxes?

Property taxes pay for the city's public service entities, such as school operation and road construction. Residents of that area vote on increases to the property taxes to create the mill levy for that area. From there, the total value of your desired home is multiplied by the mill levy percentage for that region to find the yearly property tax amount. As a buyer, you must confirm this amount with your real estate agent to avoid overextending your finances by purchasing a home with property tax requirements far outside of your means.   

Narrowing Down The Choices

Ideally, you should have more than one home consideration in line throughout the buying process. Look at the property details side by side to compare the above figures and rule out homes that do not meet your expectations. By doing your homework, and skipping risky purchases, you mitigate the chance of moving into a home that will end up costing too much in the end. Contact a real estate agent for more info.


About Me

Selling Your House?

Hi, my name is Jessica Williams. Thanks for stopping by my website. I have moved a number of times and in three cases I have had to sell a house. The first time I sold a house I listed it with a real estate agent. The second time I did it myself. The third time I listed with a realtor. You can probably ascertain from this information that I found listing with an agent the better route. I managed to sell my house by owner that one time, but never again. There is too much involved and too great a risk for errors. There’s a bunch of paperwork and preparation that goes into selling a house, more then I imagined. My goal here is to share my experiences with you. My hope is to make your experience as pleasant as possible.