When you are in the market for a home, driving around and walking through open houses is a great start!
Remember that you should always have your own agent as a buyer before entering into negotiations to purchase a home.
Here is a list of good questions to ask the seller’s agent should you find a home that you might be interested in.
Are the owners aware of any problems with the house?
You don’t want to purchase another person’s headache. Of course before you close on your new home you will have it thoroughly inspected and receive a seller’s disclosure statement that will list any problems the owners know about.
Is there an HOA?
There have been more than a few times where the seller’s agent forgot to disclose in the MLS listing that the home was in an HOA, Home Owners Association.
This typically means there is a monthly fee and extra rules to follow.
What are the monthly utility costs in the summer?
Living in the Phoenix area, we have the largest amount of utility costs during the summer as we keep ourselves cool.
Knowing what the electricity costs are is a good idea especially if you are buying a larger home.
An old, non-efficient AC unit can really rack up the cooling costs if you aren’t careful!
Have the owners made any recent improvements to the home?
In this DIY age we live in, it is a good idea to know ahead of time as to any remodeling the owners have performed.
This way you can make your home inspector aware of this and he can look for any problems that might arise.
Not everybody is a journeyman plumber or electrician!
Also if the home was freshly remodeled by an Arizona licensed contractor, many times there is a 1 or 2-year warranty on repairs.
How long have the owners lived in the home?
When people have lived in their home for a decent amount of time, it tends to make you think that the area is a good place to live in.
Your agent can’t really comment on the goings-on, or crime rates in any particular area. This research is up to you, the internet and local news.
Do your homework if you are unfamiliar with any areas you might want to live in. There are plenty of online resources to scour…
Why are the owners selling?
You may or may not get an answer to this question, but you never know what you might discover.
How many offers are on this property?
Many agents won’t give you an answer to this question, but it never hurts to ask so you can see what the battlefield is shaping up to be.
A home with multiple offers might not be worth your time?
In the end, make sure you have a list of good questions pertaining to things that are important to you and your family.
Open houses are a great time to meet the neighbors and learn more about the home and the area.
That might be a good time at ask question #6 and see what the neighbors know.
Thorough research always pays off in the end.
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