I believe that today’s home buyers are seeing one of the best “Buyer’s Markets” in 25 years thanks to an “affordability index” comprised of home prices and mortgage interest rates (although the inventory is light and the competition high) . There are many factors that I see every day and will discuss them on the blog, but I still see mistakes that buyers are making when making offers that strategically sabotage their hard work when they finally find that perfect home.
Maybe that is one of the reasons you finally found my blog, my Northern Virginia Real Estate Blog. Searching for a home on the Internet is easy, but it is buying the right house with the best terms that is where I add significant value as your “Buyer Agent”. Getting the contract through is the key challenge buyers face.
Read my Home Buyer Tips that are all through my Northern Virginia Real Estate Blog, so check them out.
Why working with me gives you an edge:
- In the business since 1991
- Have helped over 200 people buy homes
- Have sold condos, town homes, detached homes and luxury homes
- 25% of business is new construction
- Have been an Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR) since 1995
- Understand conventional, jumbo, FHA, VA and construction financing
- Will help you put together an aggressive offer with the best chance of victory
- Have talked dozens of clients out of buying the wrong house!
- Recognized by RE/MAX International and NVAR as a successful, long-time agent (you know, awards, plaques and stuff).
More than ever it is essential to work with a professional to get the most from the home buying experience. Being able to search for homes on the web is easy because there are many great search sites out there, but when it is time to get into those homes and comparison shop the value and location of the property it is key to have strategic advice and counsel.
Putting together a winning offer is the best example where professional experience is important. Why are the sellers moving, is it a foreclosure or short-sale, are there other offers on the table, when does the seller want to move, or how long has the property been for sale? These are some of the questions that I discuss with my clients when putting together an offer that can make a less than asking price offer a winner.
There are plenty of mortgage lenders willing to help you online. They have been very effective at keeping costs down but they have also been effective in helping buyers lose bids in negotiations. This doesn’t seem fair, you say; but remember that negotiations involve people. If you don’t believe me, then go and put the question out there on Zillow or Trulia and ask agents if they prefer a local lender over an internet lender when offers are competing? Especially in competitive situations, the listing agents will place more value on a local lender when discussing the offers with their clients. We will discuss situations and strategy.
In Northern Virginia we use a standardized, regional sales contract put out by our REALTOR Association, NVAR and other capital resion REALTOR Associations. This keeps costs down for buyers and sellers, and speeds up the process for making offers and getting them ratified.
New home sales contracts are different because they are written by the builder’s legal team. Many buyers who stroll into a buider’s model don’t realize that it is a showroom with a hard-sell representative from the builder who is trying to close then and there. It is here that I feel my strategic advice and ability to negotiate have helped my clients buy the best homes at the best prices in the neighborhood. Yes, the model looks great but that is not what they are really selling today. The key is to buy the right one.
If you have been searching for a home and finally find one, then it is essential that you put together an offer that will be successful without paying too much. Now I can’t perform miracles if another buyer is willing to pay $25k more, in cash, and settle in two weeks without a home inspection. But I have been successful in foreclosures with multiple bids, short sales that have been on the market for 6 months, and one of a kind homes at below market prices.
Most of my clients for the past ten years have been personally referred to me by a previous client. One of the primary reasons that I put together this blog is to give you a behind the scene peak of the Northern Virginia real estate market, my thoughts and how I work.
In our first meeting we will:
- Review a Purchaser’s Estimate Worksheet and discuss all costs
- Review mortgage options and good faith estimates
- Review the offer process, home inspections, contingencies, flow charts
- Review Home Warranties and exclusions
- Review Buyer Agency in Virginia
- Review traffic issues, schools, Metro, airports, shopping
- Answer you questions
I look forward to hearing from you… by e-mail or phone.
If you are still reading then here is a review from a client. Thanks!
- Things You Should Know Before Moving to Northern Virginia (dougfrancis.com)
- Will Your Real Estate Offer Make the Cut? (dougfrancis.com)