When it’s time to purchase a home, buyers will likely be working with a number of professionals. Here’s a rundown of some of the experts available to assist with one of the biggest purchases of a lifetime.
- Realtor – After asking around for recommendations of a good Realtor, a prospective buyer will make an appointment and discuss such subjects as price range, location and housing requirements. Also, they should discuss agency with the Realtor. The Realtor will provide information on homes, arrange for showings and write up and present any offers. The agent works through and beyond the entire transaction.
- Lender – A lender is anyone who makes home loans, including savings and loans, mortgage brokers, credit unions, commercial banks and insurance companies. A good lender should be able to help the buyer determine which type of loan will work best. Borrowers also benefit from the loan process, as they can be fairly secure that if they qualify for a loan they’ll be able to handle the payments.
- Home Inspector – This person attests to the quality of the property and discloses all pertinent facts related to the construction of the home. A good inspector will go over the entire house, inside and out, to determine whether it’s structurally sound and whether all the major systems are in satisfactory working order.
- Attorney – Legal advice is like insurance – a person never knows whether it’s needed until it’s too late. Most sales are routine, therefore, much of the decision about whether to hire a lawyer should depend on how comfortable the buyer is with the transaction. If the transaction is a complicated one, legal advice should be sought.
- Settlement Agent – This professional, also known as the escrow agent, is usually with a title company. They handle the paperwork of the transaction and search the property’s title to make sure it is unencumbered and can be transferred without any clouds on the title. The settlement agent usually closes the transaction and records and disburses funds.
A buyers may choose to use all or some of these “home professionals.” Either way, buyers are well advised to be sure to choose knowledgeable and trustworthy professionals to help with the home buyer process.