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"Are you looking to buy a new home in Morris, IL or in Grundy County? We can help you find the perfect home for you and your family, with a tried and true record in the Grundy area, our expertise is second to none."
Buying a Home
Rules for Home Buyers Working With Real Estate Agents
Real estate agents love working with people, but there are always clients who may unintentionally cross the line. Here are a few simple protocols you can use while shopping for a home that will keep you out of hot water and on good terms with real estate agents. Especially your own agent.
#1 Understand Agents Work on Commission
Very few real estate agents work on salary and if they do, you probably don't want them. Most real estate agents are paid a commission. If an agent does not close a transaction, she does not get paid. Agents are highly motivated to do a good job for you.
Agents are not public servants and do not work for free. Do not ask an agent to work for you if you intend to cut the agent out of your deal.
#2 Keep Appointments and Be on Time
- Be respectful, use common courtesy, and don't expect an agent to drop what she is doing to run out and show you a home. You are probably not that agent's only prospect or client. And if you are, it's not a good sign.
- Do not make an appointment with an agent and then forget to show up.
- If you are running late, call and let your agent know when you expect to arrive. Just show respect.
#3 Choose a Real Estate Agent
- Decide whether you want to work without representation, dealing directly with listing agents, or if you want to hire your own agent.
- If you decide to hire your own agent, interview agents to find an agent with whom you are comfortable.
- If you are interviewing agents, let each agent know you are in the interview stage.
- Never, never, never interview two different agents from the same company.
#4 Do Not Call the Listing Agent If You Are Working With a Buying Agent
- Listing agents work for the seller, not the buyer. If you hire the listing agent to represent you, that agent will now be working under dual agency. Conflicts of interest may occur.
- If a listing agent shows you the property, the listing agent will expect to represent you. Ethics prevent a listing agent from showing preferential treatment. If you ask a listing agent to do you a favor and try to discount the price, it's comprising integrity, and most won't do it.
- Listing agents do not want to do the buying agent's job. Let your buyer's agent do her job.
#5 Practice Open House Protocol
- Ask your agent if it's considered proper for you to attend open houses alone. In some areas, it's frowned upon to go to open houses unescorted.
- Hand your agent's business card to the agent hosting the open house. Sometimes this agent will be the listing agent, but often it is a buyer's agent also looking for unrepresented buyers. Announcing you are represented protects you.
- Do not ask the open house host questions about the seller or the seller's motivation. Let your agent ask those questions for you. Your agent will probably use a different approach that works.
#6 Make Your Expectations Known
- If you expect your agent to pick you up at your front door and drive you home after showing homes, tell her. Many will provide that service. If not, they will ask you to meet at the office.
- Let your agent know how you want her to communicate with you and how often. Do you want phone calls, emails, text messages, IMs, or all of the above?
- Set realistic goals and a time frame to find your home. Ask your agent how you can help by supplying feedback.
- If you are displeased, say so. Agents want to make you happy. Don't be afraid to speak up.
#7 Be Ready to Buy
- If you aren't ready to buy, you don't need a real estate agent. You can go to open houses by yourself and call listing agents for showings—but be honest. Say you are "only shopping." Look at homes online, but don't waste an agent's time if you aren't ready to act.
- If possible, hire a babysitter to care for children who are too young to stay out all morning or afternoon touring homes.
Bring your checkbook. You'll need it to write an offer because an earnest money deposit may be required to accompany your purchase offer. And please, be per-approved.
REALTOR SERVICES – Why choose a Realtor?
Is 'your' Realtor working for you? As a buyer, your interests are not represented unless you have told the Realtor who is showing you property that you want them to represent you as your "Buyer's Agent." If you haven't, "your Agent" could be representing the seller.
A buyer's agent protects your best interests. Buying property is often one of the largest financial decisions you will make in your lifetime. It does not cost you anything to be represented by a professional buyer's agent like us and it could save you thousands. Sellers have agents working for them and home buyers should too!
Why choose us as your buyer's agent? As a dedicated buyer's agent, we perform services for you that a seller's agent can't - such as showing you reasons not to buy a certain property; negotiating the best price and terms for you; including contingencies in the contract that protect you, rather than the seller; and keeping confidential any information that could hurt your bargaining position. If there are better-priced homes in the area, we will also give you an unbiased opinion and show you those homes.
From property hunting to closing, We are here for you every step of the way - don’t leave home without us! For independent representation, contact your Grundy County Realtor, Joan Eslinger
BUYING YOUR HOME
We take the buying process as seriously as our buyers do and offer quality services to our clients. When you are ready to purchase property, make sure you hire someone whom you trust, and with the experience and the attention to detail that you deserve. Here are some of the steps we will take to find the perfect property:
Distinguish between your Wants and your Needs
This is the single most important step. By asking you a series of questions, we will establish what you are looking for. Our goal is not to waste your time by looking at properties that are not in your price range or homes that don't meet your needs. Throughout the buying process, we will maintain your confidentiality and represent your best interests.
Help You Get Pre-Qualified
This step will show you how much you can afford. This is accomplished by speaking with your Financial Institution and establishing what monthly payments you are comfortable with.
We will use every available method to locate a property that matches your search criteria. This will include properties listed with our office, offered through other real estate companies, as well as unlisted properties which are for sale by owner. You will be informed of all known facts about the property that are likely to affect your decision. When we find the property that meets your criteria, we will assist you in writing an offer and will act as your Realtor link between you and the Seller and the Seller's Agent.
It's our Job to find you the property....but it is our Privilege to help you achieve your home-ownership goals.
THE AGENCY RELATIONSHIP
REALTORS work within a legal relationship called AGENCY. The Agency relationship exists between you, the CLIENT and the Brokerage, your AGENT.
The essence of the Agency relationship is that the Agent has the authority to represent the Client in dealings with others. Agents are obligated to protect and promote the interests of their clients as they would their own. Specifically, the Agent has a "CARLOAD" of Fiduciary Duties:
- Confidentiality - keep the confidences of the client
- Accounting - responsibility to protect the client
- Reasonable care & diligence - in performing all assigned duties
- Loyalty - must protect the client's negotiating position at all times
- Obedience to lawful instructions
- Accountability for his/her actions
- Disclosure - of information that might affect the value of the property
You can expect competent service from your Agent, knowing that the Brokerage is bound by Ethics and the Law to be honest and thorough in every Real Estate transaction.
This approach is reflected in the standard Real Estate contracts produced by the Illinois Real Estate Association. Please feel free to ask your REALTOR to show you the contracts appropriate to your Real Estate transaction.
The CLIENT, as well, has duties towards the Agent:
- Loyalty: The Client has an obligation to be loyal to his/her Agent when dealing with the transactions. The Client is also obligated to ensure that they only employ the SERVICES of one Agent, and not to involve any other Agent in any transaction.
- Honesty: The Client has an obligation to his/her Agent to be honest in all their dealings with that Agent. The Client is also obligated to inform the Agent if they are already working with another Agent
- The Client has the duty to pay the agreed-upon compensation as outlined in the signed contract.
- In addition, the Client has the duty to disclose material facts to the Third Party in the Real Estate transaction.
There are two main types of relationships you will find in most Real Estate transactions:
Single Agency: Single Agency occurs when both Buyer and Seller are represented by their own Agent in a Real Estate transaction. Each Agent owes full Fiduciary Duties to its own Client. (Assuming both Agents work for different Brokerages).
Dual Agency: Dual Agency occurs when one Brokerage, trading in Real Estate from one or more locations, represents two parties with respect to the potential purchase of a property.
Since the Brokerage is working for both parties, it is necessary to limit (as described below) the Fiduciary Duties owed to both Clients. These limitations on the Fiduciary Duties will also apply for Buyers when one Brokerage represents two or more Buyers.
In Real Estate sales, the Dual Agent:
- Will not, without prior written permission of the Applicable Client,disclose to the other Client(s):
- that the Seller will accept a price less than the asking price (or a countered selling price),
- that the Buyer will pay a price higher than the price offered,
- the reason the Seller is selling and the Buyer is buying, and the terms and conditions of competing offers.
Will disclose to both parties all facts known or become known to the Dual Agent that materially affect or may not materially affect the marketability or value of the property, and as well, will also disclose any facts known or facts that become evident after the transaction has proceeded that would influence the conditions of the transaction or the closing of the transaction.
Choose a Realtor wisely - be Choosy!
Buying your home is one of the most important financial decisions you will make in your life. Choose your Realtor wisely and be choosy because real estate is what you come home to. A Realtor should not only be a good communicator and a skilled negotiator, but someone who is innovative and net-savvy!
A Realtor's web site will speak volumes to you about the type of Agent he or she is. Is the site professional in nature, organized, creative, or is it a cookie-cutter cloned site? A cloned web site is pre-scripted with the same messages on thousands of sites.
Make sure your Realtor has a handle on the new technology and the internet marketplace.
You have the right to expect respect, not pre-scripted sales pitches, and you have the right to expect the best because that's what you pay us to be. Realtors may sell real estate, but real estate is what you come home to, so choose your Realtor wisely.