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Frequently Asked Questions


What is the difference between market value and appraised value?

Appraised value is the value determined by a professional appraiser. Market value is determined by the most probable price the property will bring on the market. Assessed value is the value your property taxes are based on. In some cases the assessed value will be a fair valuation, often times it will not be. The real estate market changes so quickly the best evaluation of your home is the most current one.


How do I determine the asking price for my property?

You may have your property appraised by a professional. You may also compare your property to other comparable properties that have been sold in the past several months. Your real estate agent can assist you, but the seller should determine the asking price. Remember, if your asking price is too high, you may be scaring away potential buyers and delaying the sale of your home. Contact any of our agents for a free market analysis of your property.


What should I do to prepare my house to be sold?

First impressions are lasting and very important. If you have odd jobs you have been meaning to do (fresh paint, minor fix-ups, general tidiness, etc .), try to achieve these before listing your property. You will want your prospective buyers to get a good first impression.


How big is an acre?

An acre is an area of land equal to 43,560 square feet. To give you some perspective picture a football field - not counting the two end zones, which are each 30 feet in length. There are 640 acres in a square mile.


What is the difference between being prequalified and preapproved for a loan?

The difference between being prequalified and preapproved is simple:

  • If you're prequalified it means that you POTENTIALLY could get a loan for the amount stated to you, assuming that all of the information given was accurate and true.
  • If you're preapproved, it means that you have undergone the extensive financial background check - which includes looking at your credit history, previous tax returns and verifying your employment - and the lender is willing to give you a loan. You're APPROVED! So, they give you a letter that states such and it is valid for a approximately 60 days thereafter.
  • Notwithstanding the above, you will have an accurate figure which shows the maximum amount that you are approved for. Most sellers prefer buyers that have been preapproved because they know that there will not be any problems with the purchase of their home.


The first Realtor I called gave me one price to sell my home for and I think it is too low. So I called another agent who suggested a price more in line with my expectations. Who do I choose?

You might want to consult a couple more Realtors on the market value of your home. Most of the estimates should be in the same ballpark.


It could be that the first Realtor is being more honest with you about the value of your home and the other Realtor gave you a higher number because he already knew you expected it. This is called "Buying a Listing".


What is a buyer’s agent, what does this specifically do for a buyer?

A Buyer’s agent is an agent who signs a contract with a buyer to work in the best interests of that particular buyer. It then becomes that agent’s contractual obligation to work diligently to find the home for the buyer, recommend an offer price and help their buyer client to negotiate the purchase of that property at the terms and conditions most beneficial to the buyer.


I want to buy a house. I know the property seller has an agent. Do I need my own agent?

The seller generally pays the real estate commission, not the buyer, and real estate commissions are already set in the listing contract. It doesn't cost you anything extra to have your own agent represent you because the seller is already paying for it.

If you don't have your own agent, the seller's agent will often work with both you and the seller. But in most instances the agent will be working in the seller’s best interests, not yours.


Why should I use a real estate sales person?

A real estate salesperson is more than just a "sales person." They can act on your behalf as your agent, providing you with advice and guidance and doing a job - helping you buy or sell a home. While it is true they get paid for what they do, so do other professions that provide advice, guidance, and have a service to sell --such as Certified Public Accountants and Attorneys.


The Internet has opened up a world of information that wasn't previously available to homebuyers and sellers. The data on listings available for sale is almost current - but not quite. There are times when you need the most current information about what has sold or is for sale, and the only way to get that is with an agent.


If you're selling a home, you gain access to the most buyers by being listed in the Multiple Listing Service. Only a licensed real estate agent who is a member of your local MLS can get you listed there - which then gets you automatically listed on some of the major real estate web sites. If you're buying or selling a home, the MLS one of your agent's best tools.

However, the role of an agent has changed in the last couple of years. In the past, agents were the only way home buyers and sellers could access information. Now agents are evolving. Because today's home buyers and sellers are so much better informed than in the past, expertise and ability are becoming more important.


The real estate agent is becoming more of a "guide" than a "salesperson" -- your personal representative in buying or selling a home.


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