BUYING & SELLING | A FIVE-PART SERIES PRESENTED by MG Residential’s Resident Blogger | Katie Shea Brittpn
PART 4 | BUYING BALANCE
There is no perfect way to buy a home. A mixture of expertise, timing, and luck, the process of home-buying is a balancing act. The first two of these can be found in the form of a great buyer’s agent, while the last is nearly impossible to control, but can be harnessed with the right forms of preparation. And don’t be fooled into thinking these three components of the process should be given equal weight; the right buyer’s agent will know how to give more weight to the timing and expertise and how to minimize the impact of luck on the purchase of your new property.
Buyer’s agents have a complex task, often looking for and with clients in every sort of market and neighborhood. While there are some trends in home-buying that carry across both time and place – most of us have heard that the market tends to slow down in the fall and winter, for example – your best bet for success in a home purchase is to do your homework and stay diligent. Before signing your buyer agency agreement, can you make some time for due diligence? Take a ride around the neighborhood(s) you’re targeting. Who is selling homes there? If there’s a brokerage with high visibility, chances are they know that market. Take the time to meet with someone from that team and understand how they’ll approach your home search.
In addition to engaging an agent with expertise in a geographic area, does that agent also have resources to support you when it comes to industry trends and standards? Strong teams can translate to smoother transactions, so also ask about who’s working with your agent on the contract-to-close process so you know you’re in good hands when you’re ready to make an offer. Timing will vary from offer to offer, and there are benefits to taking different approaches at different times. Can you close on an abbreviated timetable? Can you wait to see what offers come in immediately before submitting your own? When, why, and how you should embrace these strategies is part of the expertise your agent will offer.
Finally, do everything you can to make yourself ready if a lucky opportunity presents itself. Is your financing in place? Does your agent have a copy of your lender letter? Can you be ready to jump for a showing when that perfect property hits the market? Is your MLS search delivering new properties to you as they hit the market? Is your agent door-knocking, calling, and networking on your behalf? Oprah Winfrey once said that luck is preparation meeting opportunity, so once you’re well-positioned to embrace that lucky break, you will have found the balance you need to be ready to buy!