Real Estate – Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What Steps Should You Take when purchasing Real Estate?
  2. What is the difference between a real estate licensee and a Realtor®?
  3. Why Work with a Realtor?
  4. Why Consider a Home Inspection?

Real Estate – Frequently Asked Questions

    1. What Steps Should You Take when purchasing Real Estate?The first step you want to take when preparing to purchase real estate is to speak to a Lender if financing will be necessary. A Lender will run your credit and pre-qualify you for your purchase. They will tell you what amount of money they are willing to loan you so you can determine your price range. If there are any problems with your credit they can direct you on how to get the matter cleared up. Because the interest rate you will pay is directly linked to your credit, a Lender will to tell you how much money you will need as a down payment and what your monthly payments will be. Until you know these things, you are not really prepared to start shopping. If you do not have a Lender, your Realtor® can give you names and numbers of some. Realtors® do not recommend Lenders, but rather have a resource file with names of various Lenders.Because the Lending Market changes on a daily basis, it is best to speak to someone who works in that market on a daily basis. Once you know your budget, contact your Realtor® to assist you in finding the right property for you. The Realtor® will work closely with your Lender through the entire process to make the transaction as smooth as possible for you.

    1. What is the difference between a real estate licensee and a Realtor®?Someone who has a real estate license is not necessarily a Realtor®. In order to use the Realtor® trademark you must belong to a Board of Realtors®. When you join a local Board of Realtors® you also join the state Board of Realtors and the National Board of Realtors®. Realtors® have a stringent Code of Ethics they must abide by – Real Estate Licensees do not.Belonging to a Board of Realtors® gives you the ability to put your listings on a Multiple Listing Service (MLS) as long as it is an Exclusive Authorization to Sell Listing. There are many benefits to the MLS: 1) It requires all the pertinent information be gathered in a uniform manner. 2) It allows all the Realtors® to have easy access to all the listed properties so they can easily help their Buyers in finding the right property. 3) It is a wonderful tool for Appraisers to see what has been sold when working on an appraisal. Furthermore, it is also a great tool for the general public to use when searching for property.

      Whenever listings are put on a MLS, they are automatically put on This is the only way listings can show up on that website. So, if you want to search for properties anywhere in the United States, just go to, put in the zip code and any other search items you prefer, and you will have access to all the properties listed on the MLS.

      Please see “Why work with a Realtor®” to guide you on why you should chose just one Realtor® to work for you instead of calling the individual Realtor® on each property.

    1. Why Work with a Realtor?
      Working with a professional in the real estate industry will make the process of buying or selling property much easier. Everything that is involved in the transfer of real estate can be very overwhelming to someone who is not accustomed to all the necessary paperwork and processes that are necessary. Why not let someone else, who handles this type of work everyday, handle it for you?If you are thinking of selling real estate, a Realtor® can assist you in determining a fair market value for your property. They have access to what property in your area has been selling for. They can most likely market your property on a much larger scale than you could and they can put your property on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).* 

      When purchasing property, a Realtor® not only has access to their company’s listings, but to all the listings that all real estate companies have. Their commitment is to assist you in finding just the right property for you, regardless of which company has the property listed. Working in real estate is unique. Even though Realtors® might be competitors, they all work together to sell each other’s listed properties. In most cases, they are compensated by the Seller and the Buyer does not have to compensate them. There are times when Buyers will pay a commission to a Real Estate Company to have a Realtor® represent them in the purchase of real estate.

      It is less confusing for everyone if a Buyer selects one Realtor® to represent them when looking for property instead of calling a separate Realtor® for each property. All Realtors® will assist you when you contact them about a property, so you could have several Realtors® searching for you which would tend to cause confusion.

  1. Why Consider a Home Inspection?A home inspector can help you identify any issues the property may have before you go through with the purchase.

    A State Certified Home Inspector must follow certain guidelines when inspecting a structure. They will check the electric, plumbing, roof, foundation, HVAC, and other items they feel are pertinent to the safety and functioning of a home or other structure.A home inspection will not only reveal items that need attention, but will also give the potential Purchaser insight to necessary maintenance that might be needed in the future. Realtors® are not home inspectors.

    When you hire a home inspector, they are working for you and should do everything possible to ensure you get a true picture of the current condition of the structure.

    Home inspections can range in price from $250 to $1000 or more, but seem to run around $350. This is a small investment compared to the total investment of the real estate.

    Please keep in mind that no building is perfect and the home inspector will always find something to report. Normally, residences are sold in an “as is” condition. In most cases, the Seller is responsible to be sure the home is functional, but not perfect. Do not expect the Seller to pay to repair or maintain items that do not affect the functioning of the home.

    Should you get home inspection performed for a home you are selling?

    Home inspections are a good investment when you are selling. It will reveal any items you should repair or maintain in order to have your home ready to be put on the market. Also, it can also make the actual sale go smoother when any items that may have been a concern have already been taken care of. This should give the potential Buyers the feeling of confidence in a Seller who takes the sale of their property so seriously.