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How Hard Does a Realtor Work?

Do Realtors really make a big paycheck by working for just a few hours, when they help someone buy a home? 

There are some people who actually believe that good Realtors work just a few hours for a big paycheck.  While it is true that there are real estate agents out there who spend a minimal amount of time at their job, please do not confuse me with one of those!  

The following is a list of the steps I take, to help get each Buyer into a great property.  The work do cannot be completed in just a few hours! 

Getting ready to search for a home:                                                                                            

  • Have Buyer get prequalified with a lender, if financing is involved; determine whether purchase will be cash, FHA, or conventional financing; explain about earnest money deposit, proof of funds, letter from lender if one is being used, source of funds, and whether Buyer needs the Seller to help pay some or all of their closing costs.
  • Determine Buyer’s needs as to their ideal timing of purchase (for example, do they have to consider a current lease?), desired sales price, what they are looking for in a property such as location, number of bedrooms, size of house and lot, condition of property, etc.

Searching for property:
  • Sign up the Buyer on on my website to receive automatic emails of properties.
  • Do personalized property searches for the Buyer daily on the MLS, check foreclosure lists from banks to find properties not yet in the MLS  
  • Network with other Realtors to find properties not yet in the MLS (meetings are 2 hours/month for CMA Resource group, 2 hours/month at Advisory Group Network, 2 hours/month for Realty Executives meetings); talking with agents; checking the Real Estate Professionals Facebook page for new listings and posting there to alert other agents of my Buyer's needs; sending out emails to various groups of agents to describe what my buyer is looking for; contacting sellers who might want to sell their property to buyer; following up

Preparing to show property:               
  • Follow up with buyer to find out which properties they most want to see.           
  • Check showing instructions of each property; call each listing agent for availability; set appointments with agents or Sellers and/or get combo and gates codes; wait for call-backs; arrange order of homes to preview; call back Buyer to confirm our appointment


Showing property:

  • This takes about 30 minutes to 3 hours each time we see homes, depending on how many properties we are seeing.

Writing an Offer:
  • Call listing agent to confirm property is still available; use MLS and/or title records to find the recent comparable sales, to help determine property value; review findings in detail and send to the buyer with my opinion of value.
  • Discuss with Buyer the price they want to offer, amount of their earnest money deposit and down payment, whether one or more buyers will be on the contract, confirm financing and collect all paperwork necessary for submission with offer, go over cross-qualification with second lender if required; set up appointment to write the offer
  • Write the offer and explain all the pages of the contract to the Buyer, including discussion of strategies and "tricks of the trade" that I've learned over my decades of experience that can be used to strengthen an offer without necessarily raising the price.
  • Any deposit check received from Buyer is entered into the broker's trust book.

                                                                                                                                                    
Submitting the offer:

  • Assemble the offer with additional required paperwork, write personal cover letter when appropriate; scan, save, attach to email to listing agent; contact agent to let them know I’ve sent the offer, and confirm receipt.


Negotiating the offer – Going over counter offers

  • If the seller has not accepted the offer and a Counter Offer is received, we go over pros and cons of it and either accept or write a counter offer to the counter offer, if applicable, for best price and terms.

                                                                                                                                  
After offer is accepted and Escrow period begins:

  • I contact the Escrow officer, arrange for buyer's earnest money deposit to get to the Escrow company – either the buyer will wire it (I get wiring instructions and send to buyer), or it will be hand-delivered or sent by FedEx by buyer or by me.
  • Contact the lender, if there is financing to let them know contract is on the way
  • Make sure that copies of the complete contract go to Buyer, Seller’s agent, Escrow company, and lender
  • Order home warranty, Natural Hazard Report, or other reports as needed
  • Obtain Seller's disclosures; prepare any additional required disclosures
  • Help Buyer arrange for property inspection and coordinate that appointment with listing agent and Seller.
  • Confirm all utilities are on, and “unwinterize” property prior to inspection
  • Attend home inspection with buyer (inspection usually takes 1-1/2 to 3 hours)
  • Review Seller disclosures with buyer (can sometimes be done during property inspection) so Buyer can sign them; scan and return disclosures to listing agent and provide copies to Buyer
  • Do my own visual inspection of the property
  • After the inspection, receive and review written property inspection report(s) with the Buyer, discuss findings, and either prepare 3-part Request for Repairs or alternate disclosure when no repairs are being requested
  • Receive and review Escrow Instructions and Preliminary title report
  • Receive and review other reports such as Termite Inspection, Natural Hazard Disclosure and get signatures as required
  • Follow up regularly with Buyer's lender, communicate regularly with Buyer, the Seller’s agent, and with the Escrow company
  • Confirm buyer gets required insurance on property
  • Solve problems, answer questions, prepare amendments or addendums, set up appointments with additional inspectors if necessary, and handle other duties as they come up.
  • Assemble the file to turn in to my broker to keep proper records of transaction.


Buyer’s Walk-through
 

  • Meet buyer at property to confirm property is in generally the same condition as when the offer was accepted and any agreed-upon repairs have been completed.
  • Make sure buyer is making arrangements for utilities to be put into their name.

Close of Escrow
  • Arrange with listing agent to get keys to the Buyer
  • Deliver keys to the Buyer and say "thank you" -- Yay!
     


Hopefully you now have an appreciation for, or at least an understanding of, how much time I invest in each Buyer.  

Don't work with a Realtor who cuts corners!  Call me and let me give you top service.  You deserve it.




Original material copyright 2016 by Felicia Grady.  No part of this material may be copied or used without permission.



 
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