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Home Buyers FAQ

DO I NEED A REALTOR TO HELP ME BUY MY HOME?

Yes, for many reasons. A Realtor is a professional that has passed a course of study and passed the State of Florida Real Estate exam. A Realtor is obligated to follow a code of ethics in dealing with the public. Most Realtors are well educated, know the market, and have an understanding of all the paperwork that is involved in listing and selling a home. Also, Realtors have complete access to the MLS so they can show anything listed with any other Realtor. Langham-Dilmore Real Estate shares all these advantages plus we have decades of experience right here in the Venice, Florida area. On our website, you will find many comments from our past customers thanking us for our service and assistance in helping them buy or sell their home. Select a Realtor that shares your goals has a personality that you like and is committed to service. Please take a moment and check out our reviews.

WHO PAYS THE REALTOR’S FEES?

In most cases, the seller pays our fees. Our Medway Realty Broker charges a $195.00 administrative fee that is paid at closing either by a buyer or seller whichever is applicable.

HOW DO I GET PRE-APPROVED FOR A MORTGAGE?

If you do business with a local bank or know a mortgage broker, you might want to start there. Go on line, or call their office and let them know you want information on mortgages and want to go through the pre-approval process. On our website, under the resource tab, we have a lot of the information to help you get started. Any of the lenders listed there will be happy to assist you.

HOW MUCH CAN I AFFORD TO PAY FOR A HOUSE?

This is a question your lender will be able to answer for you. Our recommendation is that you don’t begin looking at homes until you have met with the lender and have your pre-approval in place. When you provide the lender with all your financial information, they will be able to give you that figure. Then the fun begins! We can then start searching for homes in your price range on the MLS, and you can go to the search tab on our website to begin your search with all your specific criteria. You’ll love looking at all the pictures of the homes, and it definitely will help you narrow your search by eliminating properties that are not of interest.

CAN YOU HELP ME IF I’M A FIRST-TIME HOME BUYER?

We LOVE first-time home buyers! We are experienced in this area and take a lot of pleasure in helping people find their first dream home. Let’s get you pre-approved and
we’ll be with you every step of the way.

CAN YOU HELP ME IF I WANT TO BUY FHA OR VA?

Yes, we can! We are experienced in these types of mortgages as well and have lenders that specialize in government mortgages that can help you. You will find information from lenders on our website on this subject as well.

DO I GET A BETTER DEAL IF I PAY CASH?

Sometimes, but not always. A seller always likes to see a cash offer, but it depends on the other terms of the contract that may be included such as a contingency on the sale of the buyer’s other property. Cash or financing is not always the deciding factor in accepting an offer. If financing is involved in your offer, it is definitely to your advantage to have a pre-approval letter from a local lender to submit with your offer. That gives the seller confidence in your ability to purchase and meet the terms of the contract.

CAN YOU HELP ME IF I WANT TO BUY NEW CONSTRUCTION?

Absolutely!!! We are very familiar with new construction in the area and have a good relationship with local builders. Once again, our website is an excellent resource for you to search new construction, see floor plans, prices, etc. Also, the builder pays our fees, and it does not cost you a penny more for our services. If you are out of town and are building a new home here, we keep you up to date with the entire process.

HOW MUCH EARNEST MONEY DO I HAVE TO PUT DOWN WHEN I WRITE AN OFFER?

This depends on the financial aspect of your offer. If you are getting government financing, the down payment is less so a lower earnest money deposit would be expected. If you are getting a conventional mortgage with 20% down, your deposit would be more as well as with a cash offer. It is always your decision on the amount of the deposit, but a seller feels more confident with an offer that shows a reasonable deposit.

DO TITLE COMPANIES/ATTORNEYS ACCEPT PERSONAL CHECKS FOR CLOSING?

Unfortunately, the answer is no. Because of all the bank and mortgage fraud in the past few years, closing agents no longer accept personal checks at closing. The funds must be wired to the closing agent before closing. The closing agent will provide you with all the information needed to complete the wire transfer to their secure account.

I WORK SO I HAVE TO LOOK AT PROPERTY IN THE EVENINGS OR WEEKENDS. ARE YOU AVAILABLE?

Yes, we try to always be available to meet your schedule.

WHAT IF I HAVE A HOME TO SELL?

It’s always best to write an offer with as few contingencies as possible, but sometimes we are faced with this situation. If you must write an offer with this contingency, it would be better if the property was already under contract, the inspections were completed, and all other contingencies were satisfied. In other words, everything was done and a firm closing date established with all parties just waiting to close.

HOW MANY HOMES SHOULD I SEE BEFORE MAKING AN OFFER?

This is difficult to answer. Some of our past customers buy the first home they see because it’s exactly what they are looking for. Others want to see everything on the market meeting their criteria before making a decision. Unfortunately, sometimes people loose the opportunity to buy their dream home because they waited too long before writing an offer and another happy buyer acted faster in making a decision. Most of our customers spend a lot of time searching for homes on our website and save considerable time because you can eliminate properties that do not meet your criteria. This usually reduces the number of properties that you see in person, and therefore you can make a quicker decision. We are currently in a very active market situation and good homes priced fairly are selling fast. Our recommendation is not to wait if you find a home that makes you happy and meets your criteria.

HOW DO I KNOW WHAT TO OFFER ON A HOME?

We get this question all the time! When you have chosen a home to buy and are ready to write an offer, we will provide you with comparables in the neighborhood and other information to assist you with that decision. We will answer all your questions and help you in whatever way we can, but we can not tell you what to offer.

HOW DO I KNOW IF THE PROPERTY IS A GOOD DEAL?

This answer is the same as the answer to the question above. We will provide you with comparables of current listings and sold properties, tax records, and other information which will help you determine the value.

SHOULD I GET A HOME INSPECTION?

Yes, we highly recommend a home inspection by a qualified, well-respected home inspector. We surround ourselves with other professionals that provide the same quality service we provide so we can give you home inspectors to call and interview so you can select one that makes you feel comfortable. Sometimes, you can get names from your friends that you would like to use. That is fine too.

CAN I GET OUT OF A CONTRACT IF I CHANGE MY MIND?

Well, hopefully, this doesn’t happen, but there are certain situations when this could occur. If you change your mind due to contingencies such as inspections, mortgage, or other contingencies written in the contract, and we are within our specified time periods, then you would probably be protected to withdraw. If you would change your mind in the middle of the closing process and all contingencies have been met, then we would have to check the contract to see if you are protected under another provision. When this happens, and your position is not clear, it would be our recommendation to have an attorney evaluate your situation. We never give legal advice as we are not attorneys.

ONCE I AM IN CONTRACT AND HAVE INSPECTIONS DONE, WHAT IS MY NEXT STEP?

If you have chosen to move forward with the purchase after inspections, we will assist you with everything else you need to move toward a successful closing. If financing is involved, you will have to be in close contact with your lender in order to meet your mortgage commitment deadline. Upon receiving your mortgage commitment or if it is a cash closing, we will then stay in close touch with the closing agent to make sure the title insurance is in place, a survey is ordered (if applicable), assist with your homeowners insurance, and anything else that is needed. We will do a final walk-through with you, or someone you have chosen on your behalf, prior to closing. You’re almost there!!