Upcoming Free (& non-promotional) Home Buyer Classes:
Home Showings 101...home buyer & seller education
Saturday, February 8th, from 9am-12pm (ish)
Marshall Community Center, conference room
1009 E. McLoughlin Blvd, Vancouver WA (kitty corner from Clark College)
Tuesday, February 11th, from 5pm - 8pm (ish)
Marshall Community Center, Conference room
1009 E McLoughlin Blvd, Vancouver WA (kitty corner from Clark College)
Saturday, February 22nd, from 12pm-3pm (ish)
Vancouver YMCA, conference room
11324 NE 51st Circle, Vancouver WA (corner of SR500 & Gher Road/112th Ave).
If these class dates and/or times don't work for you, please let us know. We understand that you have lives, and families, and work. We will work something out that works better with your schedule. Just let us know....
....we also have home seller classes available too...look for link on top of website
Finally....January is over...not that it was the longest month ever, or anything like that... The beginning of the year is a good time to sell your home (if you've been thinking about it), and it's a time where a lot of folks who have been thinking about buying a home start the pre-approval process. This months blog is going to address something that is important for both sellers, and buyers....showing homes. Let's talk about this...the funnest, and the scariest part...
As we've talked about in the past, there's a process to buying (and even selling) a home.... first, you take a home buyer (or home seller) class, second, you move on to getting pre-approved. Yes, even if you are selling a home, you want to get pre-approved before you go looking for your next home. For a seller (who is going to be a homebuyer when their home sells) part of the information you will be giving to your lender is the guesstimated amount that you'll receive from the sale of your current home...your Realtor will help with this. When you are buying a home, your Realtor is here to help you with your home adventure, and while yes, this is kind of scary...it is a lot of fun. Whether this is your first home, or your 3rd, or 5th, or whatever...with a pre-approval & your Realtor, you are ready for the 'fun' part.....LOOKING AT HOMES! :-) This is always an exciting time for buyers, and it should be! Every home you pull up to has the possibility to be 'the one'....The one you make an offer on, the one that you buy, the ONE that becomes YOUR HOME...and it is very exciting, and yes, kind of scary too. For the sellers though, it is very stressful because currently this IS their home, and they're leaving so that strangers can come in. As a Realtor, we are trying to make this as easy as possible for both the buyer and seller, but we need help...
From the homeowners (sellers), we are asking that the home be available to show, that the home be clean, nothing of value is being left out, all medicines are put away and out of sight (not left in bathrooms or kitchen cabinets), anything that a seller wants excluded from the sale is noted, that sweet pups are either removed or kenneled, that sweet kitties are noted as inside only or inside/outside ok, and that please, please... homeowners (sellers) be gone for showings. Before you go on the market, talk to your Realtor about HOW the showings will work with your home. Some folks are cool with a few hours notice, some need more time. Most of my clients need a bit more time for showings. If you have kids and/or pets, it's ok to ask for 24 hour notice. That way you have time to prepare your home to be seen in its best possible condition. You are still living in your home, and the buyers and buyers Realtor will (or should) respect that. A lockbox will be put on your home, and during a showing the buyers agent will access the box for the key. An email and/or a text will be sent to the sellers Realtor to let them know that a Realtor with XYZ company has accessed the home, and for how long we were there. Before a seller puts their home on the market there is preparation, and usually some 'honey-do's' that need to be done. As always, there is more to it than this, but that is a different class....and email. You can always call me for more information when you are selling your home.
From the buyers....it gets a bit more complicated... before we go house shopping, we are asking that you have a pre-approval letter with a solid lender, we are asking that you do not look at homes above your price range, we are asking that you have thought about the Top Three things you want in a home (so we can show you homes that have those items you value most), and that you help us help you....
When a Realtor opens the lockbox to show you the home, we are taking responsibility for everything that happens from that moment on....until we lock up the house and put the key back into the lockbox. As I say all the time... Real Estate is NOT like HGTV... you don't just get to wander the home while your Realtor sits outside... we must be with you at all times when touring your potential new home. Sometimes this can be like herding cats, but we understand your excitement... just please, please as you are touring the home, and we know you have your family with you, please...we must all stay together. Don't make me sing to you here.....
As cool as those toys look, I'm sorry but the kiddos can't play with them, and sorry...but you can't jump on the beds either. It's ok to open cupboards, and closets, but we can't open dressers, or go through someone else's personal items. Touring a home is a VISUAL thing....sorry. Yes, you can use the bathroom.
When it's wet out (and lately it's been VERY wet), it's always a good take off our shoes before we enter someone else's home so be sure to wear easy on & off shoes, or use shoe booties.
When we are looking at homes, often we have more than one home to look at, and many homes are owner occupied so your Realtor makes appointments. We do the best we can to make sure we have enough time to look at the homes, but we need to stay within our timeframes as the sellers are waiting to come home after we leave, or there are other Realtors waiting to show the home. I promise we are not trying to 'rush' you through the home...we are just trying to stay within the timeframes so that you can see the other homes on your list.
With the real estate market starting to pick up for spring, it's important that if a home comes up that you like, you need to let your Realtor know as soon as possible so we can make an appointment for you to see it. Your Realtor should be sending you a list of homes as they come on the market for you to check....drive by the homes...check out those neighborhoods....and let's make an appointment to go see the inside of the home.
Do not trust Internet photos! Realtors hire professional photographers for our listings for a reason. :-) Internet photos are a lot like internet dating...you don't know what you're going to get when you get there
Like the neighborhood, but not sure about the house? Let's at least go check out the inside! You never know as you can't judge a book (or a house) by its cover.
ASK QUESTIONS!! For heavens sake...this is a home you are thinking about buying... ask questions! As your Realtor, we are here to help! If we can't answer your questions, we can at least set up in the right direction to get those answers.
Buying a home is a very emotional experience. Your Realtor is here to point out pros/cons, and to help you.... Trust your heart, but use your head... or your Realtor. :-) Remember that we work FOR you.
Once you find THE home it's time to talk about making an offer, and those pesky timelines that you need to know, and that we need to abide by. So, let's talk about that....next month!
Thank you, as always, for reading this.
I hope this helps you this week! Please, if you have any questions, please feel free to call, email, text, or even facebook me anytime. I am always here to help!
Information is power, and I hope that I am help you! Good luck, and as always...May the odds be ever in your favor out there.... If you are looking for a real estate agent, I would love to be able to help you.
I hope that explains this a bit, but if you have any questions, or comments please call or email me anytime! Please remember that while I mean these emails/blogs to be helpful, and educational, I am still hoping that you will call, or email me. I would love to help you with your home buying, or home selling adventure! :-)
As always....this is just a quick overview.... again...and I can't say this enough...please remember that your agent is NOT a salesperson, and should not be acting like one. Real Estate is not really about houses, it is about relationships. Your agent, and your lender work for YOU. You drive the bus...we are merely GPS to help you get to your goals. Like the classes, this weekly blog email is to help you with your home adventure. The goal is to be informative and non-promotional. :-) We are, however, hoping you will call and want us to help with your adventure.
Thank you again for your business and your referrals!! ...and thank you for referring these classes to your friends, family, and co-workers.
....disclaimer...if you have already purchased a home, or would no longer like to receive these emails, please let me know and I will be happy to remove you from any further mailings...
How long is the home buying process... aka....when do I GET Keys?
Last Month: New Year...New Home? Maybe? Where to Start?
Have a great day, and I will talk to you soon,
Real Estate broker
Re/Max - Van Mall
360/ 903-3504 cell
360/ 882-3600 fax
“Interested in free and non promotional home education classes? Go to www.freehomebuyerclasses.com for local upcoming home buyer and home SELLER classes, or facebook: Tracie DeMars Real Estate for my home buyer education blog.”
"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be."
- Shel Silverstein, American poet, cartoonist and composer, (1930 - 1999).