Welcome back to Home Buying 101 – Throughout this series I will be detailing the various parts of the transaction process for purchasing a single family home. My goal is to answer the many questions looming around purchasing, especially for first-time home buyers. If you are just beginning, I recommend starting with Part One: Understanding Equity.
In 2015, 88% of home buyers decided to use a REALTOR®; and those numbers are up from 2001 at 69%. Why is there an increase in the partnerships? Buyers realize the benefits of using a REALTOR® - as part of the local MLS, the agent has access to the most updated sales statistics which is invaluable when preparing an offer. From the sales statistics, an agent can pull comparison properties and determine what a reasonable offer would be for the property of interest. I can’t imagine any buyer wanting to over pay on what is already a substantial chunk of change!
A REALTOR® is a salesperson that is an active member in the National Association of Realtors (NAR). I am a member of the local Bryan/College Station Association of Realtors, Texas Association of Realtors, and the National Association of Realtors. The local Association of Realtors allows me access to property information in Brazos, Burleson, Grimes, Leon, Madison, and Robertson counties through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).
Some other names you may have heard are salesperson or real estate agent. A licensed person can be an agent or salesperson without being a REALTOR®, but a REALTOR® must be a licensed salesperson/agent. Think of it like the phrase “a square is a rectangle but a rectangle is not a square”. In this case, the square is the REALTOR® and the salesperson/agent is the rectangle – a REALTOR® is a salesperson/agent, but a salesperson/agent is not (always) a REALTOR®.
Also, Texas is a non-disclosure state – this is huge! What this means is when a home is sold, meaning it went to closing and ownership changed, the final sale price is NOT disclosed or reported as any form of recording. This is important because it proves that websites like Zillow and Trulia are guessing (at best) on what they think the value of a property is… not that appealing huh? It’s best to use either a Brokerage’s Search tool (like ours here), or Realtor.com for more accurate listing information.
How will you know if you are getting a good deal? As your agent, I can give you the percentage of the list price similar properties sold for, which can be used to determine a fair purchase price for the property you are interested in!
What’s the next step? Find out in Part Four: Meet with a REALTOR®. Also, please leave any comments or questions below!
Katie Langthorn | Real Estate Agent, REALTOR®
C: 281.850.7743 | O: 979.703.1979 | F: 979.703.1980
3091 University Dr. E. #230 | Bryan, Texas 77802
Your Source for Bryan/College Station Real Estate