Exclusive Buyer Agents – Discover the difference!!

Exclusive Buyer Agents – Discover the difference!!

Are you a buyer-customer or a buyer-client?
Services will vary, depending on your agency status*
If you are a CUSTOMER (no agency relationship), an agent will: If you are a CLIENT (agency relationship), your agent will:
Maintain loyalty to the seller’s need Pay full attention to your needs
Tell the seller all that they know about you Tell you all that they know about the seller
Keep information about the seller confidential Keep information about you confidential
Focus on the seller-client’s property Focus on choices that satisfy your needs
Provide just the material facts Provide material facts as well as professional advice
Only provide price information that supports the seller’s listing price Provide price counseling based on comparable properties and their professional insights
Protect the seller Protect and guide you
Negotiate on behalf of the seller Negotiate on your behalf
Attempt to solve problems to the seller’s advantage and satisfaction Attempt to solve problems to your advantage and satisfaction

* This chart is for general illustration purposes only. Agency laws vary by state; and specific terms of individual agency contracts will vary from one agent to another.

Discover the difference – http://www.BuyerDestinationRealtyInc.com

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Exclusive Buyer Agents – Discover the difference!!

Are you a buyer-customer or a buyer-client?
Services will vary, depending on your agency status*
If you are a CUSTOMER (no agency relationship), an agent will: If you are a CLIENT (agency relationship), your agent will:
Maintain loyalty to the seller’s need Pay full attention to your needs
Tell the seller all that they know about you Tell you all that they know about the seller
Keep information about the seller confidential Keep information about you confidential
Focus on the seller-client’s property Focus on choices that satisfy your needs
Provide just the material facts Provide material facts as well as professional advice
Only provide price information that supports the seller’s listing price Provide price counseling based on comparable properties and their professional insights
Protect the seller Protect and guide you
Negotiate on behalf of the seller Negotiate on your behalf
Attempt to solve problems to the seller’s advantage and satisfaction Attempt to solve problems to your advantage and satisfaction

* This chart is for general illustration purposes only. Agency laws vary by state; and specific terms of individual agency contracts will vary from one agent to another.

Description of Agency

There are agents, and then there are agents. Yes, it sounds confusing. That’s because the term “agent” is often used in a casual manner, referring to any real estate practitioner.

But agent also refers to someone with whom you’ve established a formal agency relationship—someone who represents your best interests in a real estate transaction and owes you fiduciary responsibilities. Agency relationships are usually established in writing with buyer agency agreements, and require:

  • loyalty
  • obedience
  • disclosure
  • confidentiality
  • reasonable care and diligence
  • accounting

THE BIRTH OF BUYER AGENCY

For many years, real estate was practiced in such a manner that agency relationships were only extended to sellers. Any real estate agent who brought a buyer to the table was actually working as a sub-agent to the seller.

This all began changing in the 1980s, when buyer agency started gaining momentum in residential transactions. Today, agency laws still vary from state to state. But even if you live in a state that recognizes buyer agency, you can’t assume that you will automatically receive fiduciary responsibilities from the agent you’re working with as a potential home buyer.

That’s why it’s vitally important to talk to the agent or broker early in your working relationship about his/her agency status. You may also want to consult your state association of REALTORS® to gain a better understanding about agency laws in your particular state, or contact the agency charged with regulating real estate professionals in your state, often referred to as the state real estate commission.

Details vary from one state to another, and each brokerage has its own contract terms within these broader guidelines. But for purposes of illustration, this table outlines how your status may affect the level of service to which you are entitled:

Are you a buyer-customer or a buyer-client?
Services will vary, depending on your agency status

We are an Exclusive Buyer Agency

National Association of Exclusive Buyer Agents Standards of Practice

Principles That Buyers Can Count On

The National Association of Exclusive Buyer Agents is an independent alliance of real estate professionals who provide client-level services and whose real estate companies do not accept seller-property listings. We, the members of this Association, set forth the following principles as the minimum professional standards which will guide us in serving our Buyer-Clients. An Exclusive Buyer Agency relationship requires that we operate according to these fundamental commitments. The essence of Exclusive Buyer Agency practice is undivided loyalty to our Buyer-Clients. We recognize that it is our duty as real estate professionals to serve our clients with fidelity to these Standards of Practice. We also pledge to adhere to the Code of Ethics established by this Association.

A. SERVICES PROVIDED IN THE INITIAL COUNSELING INTERVIEW PHASE

Standard A(1): A Buyer Agent will disclose that he/she is a Buyer Agent and define his/her agency relationship to a prospective Buyer-Client. A Buyer Agent will explain how different agency relationships may affect the level and type of service a

Buyer-Client may receive from a real estate agent.

Standard A(2): Before entering into an agreement with a Buyer-Client, a Buyer Agent will determine if any conflict of interest may exist on his/her own part or that of a Buyer-Client. If a conflict should occur, a Buyer Agent should be precluded from representing a Buyer-Client, who should have the option of seeking representation elsewhere.

Standard A(3): A Buyer Agent will provide a copy of these professional Standards and answer any questions a Buyer-Client may have about them.

Standard A(4): A Buyer Agent will enter into a written Agency Agreement with his/her Buyer-Client. The agreement will include beginning and ending dates, the service fee structure and payment method, and the responsibilities of both parties.

Standard A(5): A Buyer Agent will make him/herself available to his/her Buyer-Client in a timely manner.

Standard A(6): A Buyer Agent will pledge absolute confidentiality to a Buyer-Client when representing him/her, thereby protecting that Buyer-Client’s ability to negotiate all aspects of the transaction.

Standard A(7): A Buyer Agent will counsel a Buyer-Client regarding his/her financial qualifications and will assist that Buyer-Client in seeking and working with mortgage lenders. A Buyer Agent will not steer his/her Buyer-Client to any one lender but instead will assist him/her in evaluating interest rates and closing costs.

What to Look For When Searching For a Neighborhood

The process of buying a home can be incredibly exciting. Imagining you and your family living in a new, better space where you can all enjoy yourselves is motivation enough to work through all the challenges of finding and buying a house. When you buy a home, you are buying more than just a building. You are buying a lifestyle. Where your home is located, the neighborhood that it is located, will influence the lives of you and your family for as long as you live in that house. This makes choosing the right neighborhood an integral part of choosing the right home. So how do you choose a neighborhood?

When looking for a home most people will settle on a town first and then start narrowing down some of the neighborhoods they feel are best suited for their lifestyle. What some people don’t understand is that the neighborhood you choose can have a direct impact on what you pay for a home and ultimately the long term value that it holds. In most communities there will be certain neighborhoods that have a certain “cache”. They are well recognized as being great for re-sale due to their extreme popularity. There can be any number of reasons why certain neighborhoods carry a premium over others. A good local real estate agent should be able to point of the differences for you. Below you will see some of the many considerations of what to look for when choosing a neighborhood.

Before you start to look for a home one of the smartest things you can do is put together a checklist of all the things you want in a neighborhood. Look over your list and then prioritize the items. This will give you a better handle on ultimately figuring out exactly what it is you are looking for.

When you talk with your Realtor about the homes you want to look at, the neighborhood where each home is located should be a major consideration. Here are a few things that you will want to think about when looking into neighborhoods. Some of these factors will be a positive influence while others not so much. When people ask how to choose a neighborhood these are often the most important considerations: schools, crime, street lighting, ease to highways, railroad and shopping, walk ability, nightlife, parks, beaches and churches. 

First Time Home Buyer Mistakes

There’s no disputing the fact that home ownership is as accessible as it’s ever been. Even following the constricting of the mortgage loan industry in the late ’00s, home ownership is an option for more people than it used to be, either because it’s seen as a wise investment or because the market is (sometimes) just so darn tempting

But just because you’re able and willing to enter the home-buying market doesn’t mean you’re READY.

 The Huffington Post, that great bastion of listicles, in December published a quick and humorous read that outlines some of the mistakes first-time home-buyers make. (Best part: the list is punctuated by hilarious animated gifs… we particularly like the first one featuring the poor idiot at the track meet.)

Among the pitfalls: Hiring the wrong agent. Just because a Realtor is your friend, or just because your parents have used him or her for years, doesn’t necessarily make this person the right Realtor for you. Know your communication style. Ask some tough questions. Even have them pull some listings for you before you commit to paying them that valuable commission.

Why have a home inspection?

Before buying a home, one of the things you should do is to have the home checked out by a licensed, professional home inspector. Purchasing a home is often the largest investment you will ever make – why should you choose to add another expense to the process if you’re not required to?

A licensed home inspector is a professional who will conduct an inspection of the general condition of the home.  A good home inspection will assist a buyer in understanding exactly what they are about to acquire.  A home may look move in ready, but a professional home inspector will cover features of the house such as electrical wiring, plumbing, roofing, insulation, as well as structural features of the home and may unveil issues that are not noticeable to the buyer’s eye.  As a buyer, you are making a vast investment, and it is important to understand exactly what you are purchasing.  Having a licensed home inspector conduct a thorough inspection of the prospective property, could potentially save you thousands.

What does a Home Inspection examine?

Structure: A home’s skeleton impacts how the property stands up to weather, gravity, and the earth. Structural components, including the foundation and the framing, will be inspected.

Exterior: We will inspect sidewalks, driveways, steps, windows, and doors. A home’s siding, trim, and surface drainage also are part of an exterior inspection. Attached porches, decks, and balconies

Roofing: A well-maintained roof protects you from rain, snow, and other forces of nature. We will note the roof’s approximate  age, conditions of flashing, roof draining systems (pooling water), buckled shingles, loose gutters and downspouts, skylight, and chimneys.

Plumbing: We examine the visible water supply and drainage systems, water heating equipment, and fuel storage systems. Drainage pumps and sump pumps also fall under this category. Poor water pressure, banging pipes, rust spots, or corrosion can indicate problems.

Electrical: Safe electrical wiring is essential. We look at the condition of service entrance wires, service panels, breakers and fuses, and disconnects and outlets.

Heating: The home’s heating system, vent system, flues, and chimneys are inspected. We check the age, the size, and condition of the water heater.

Air Conditioning: Central air conditioning systems are inspected.

Interiors: An inspection of the inside of the home includes: Walls, ceilings, floors, Steps, stairways and railings, countertops and cabinets

Ventilation/insulation: We check for adequate insulation and ventilation in the attic and in unfinished areas such as crawlspaces, as well as properly secured insulation.  Excess moisture in the home can lead to mold and water damage.

Fireplaces: They’re charming, but they could be dangerous if not properly installed and maintained. We check these out for you!

Garages: Garage door systems, electrical systems, roof, exterior and interiors

A home inspection will cost you a little bit of time and money, but in the long run you’ll be glad you did it. The inspection can reveal problems that you may be able to get the current owners to fix before you move in, saving you time and money. If you are a first-time homebuyer, an inspection can give you a crash course in home maintenance and a checklist of items that need attention to make your home as safe and sound as possible. Don’t skip this important step in the home-buying process – it’s worth every penny.

Social Security Changes in 2015

The cost-of-living-adjustment (COLA) for 2015 is 1.7 percent. This means Social Security recipients will see an average $22 more each month. $2,663 is the maximum monthly payment for those taking benefits at full retirement age. The average monthly retirement benefit for all recipients is $1,328. The amount of wages subject to the Social Security tax will go up by $1,500 — to $118,500.

Home Inspections

Many buyers forget that the price isn’t the only or the last negotiation point in a real estate purchase. There are a number of contingencies and processes that happen before closing, and one that frequently causes deals to evaporate is the inspection and repair negotiation process.

Inspections in a real estate deal encompass many property aspects:

  • Structure
  • Roof
  • Mechanical equipment
  • Plumbing
  • Electrical
  • Pests & insect infestation
  • Mold & other environmental hazards
  • Wells & water quality
  • Septic systems

Real Estate – Exclusive Buyer Agency

Merry Christmas for short sellers: Mortgage debt forgiveness is back

One-year retroactive extension covers 2014 deals

A comprehensive tax bill that reinstates protections for distressed homeowners shielding them from having to pay taxes on mortgage debt forgiven in 2014 is headed for President Obama’s desk.

The tax break on forgiven mortgage debt, and another allowing homeowners to deduct mortgage insurance premiums, was one of 55 provisions in the Tax Increase Prevention Act passed Tuesday in a 76-16 Senate vote.

The House passed the bill 387 to 46 on Dec. 3, and Obama is expected to sign the bill into law, enabling the tax break retroactively through Dec. 31 of this year.

The Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007 was created in the aftermath of the housing bust, with the intention of protecting homeowners who lose their home in a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure from the double whammy of a whopping tax bill.

Before the exemption was created by Congress, if a lender agreed to let a homeowner with $400,000 in mortgage debt sell their house for $300,000, the IRS would treat the remaining $100,000 of forgiven mortgage debt as income.

The House and Senate extended the tax break on forgiven mortgage debt in 2009 and 2012, but it lapsed at the end of 2013.

More than 800,000 homeowners have claimed the tax break, National Mortgage News reports, citing Rep. Charles Rangel, the New York Democrat who was a sponsor of the original bill.

In the first eight months of this year, loan servicers working for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac signed off on just 27,800 short sales, down from 125,232 in 2012, National Mortgage News said.