Real estate tip: The people involved

lauren-and-scottsponsored post by Lauren Hruby and Scott DeVouton

Buying or selling a home can be a dizzying experience. From the point you decide to list or buy until the day you close and then finally move, there is a steady stream of documents, errands, to-do’s, phone calls and appointments. There is also a parade of professionals that whisks through your life.

Each person involved in your deal brings a particular expertise.  Some, like your realtor, are with you throughout your experience.  Some, like a bank underwriter, are here one moment and gone the next.  Each person serves an important role.

You. Of course, you and your home are the first parts of the equation.  This importance shouldn’t be lost when it comes to understanding what everyone else is doing. All decisions go through you.

Your Realtor.  Your realtor is typically there from the beginning, and usually is your liaison with everyone else involved.  A realtor is used to working with each role in the transaction, and has often worked with some of the people you’ll see along the way. You’ll spend a lot of time working with your agent communicating with others and processing information.

Other Realtors.  Most buyers or sellers you will work with will also be working with an agent. Depending on the market, how many offers are out there, and how much inventory there is, you could be dealing with a good number of other realtors.

Title/Escrow Company and Closer.  When you buy or sell a home, all information typically goes through a title or escrow company. Escrow deposits usually set here, and this is the office that issues a property’s title commitment.  When you close, the closer is usually with that office.  This might be the last face you see in the process, but your title or escrow company starts working as soon as you have your contract. All funds and proceeds move through this office.

Lender and Underwriter. Buyers often meet with a lender early in the process, and will work closely with the lender to gather information and determine how much home they can afford.  Sellers will gather loan information to help determine when to list and how much to ask for their home.  Lenders do a lot of background work, both with you and your realtor.  Throughout a transaction, your lender and realtor will communicate frequently to gather information and to get all required contracts in place. The underwriter analyzes the loan to make the final approval.

Inspectors. Buyers usually work with a primary inspector and maybe a few specialists, such as a termite inspector, a radon inspector and a chimney inspector.  Sometimes a structural engineer or other specialist will follow another inspection that turns something up.  Sellers typically don’t have to arrange inspections, but still must deal with any of their own scheduling issues.

Contractors. Many of our seller clients deal with a contractor early in the process, to fix or upgrade parts of the home.  Plumbers, electricians and general contractors are all examples of people we often work with.  Buyers and sellers will also work with contractors if anything comes up during inspections.  Who arranges what and who pays for what are both points for negotiation.

Photographers and Stagers. Seller’s agents will typically have a photographer shoot the home, which is done early in the process.  Sometimes hiring a stager is also a good idea, to get the home in its best showable condition.

Warranty Rep. Sellers and buyers both routinely get a home warranty.  The home warranty company will have a representative who sets up the account and processes the order.  Who orders the warranty and what kind of warranty is ordered are both points for negotiation.

Assistants.  Each person you work with while buying or selling a home often has an assistant to help move things along.  Sometimes this is someone you speak with frequently, and sometimes it’s someone who is entirely in the background.

Broker Staff.  Each realtor has a broker that keeps a file on each deal, reviews it for compliance, and processes commission info.  This is usually a team of people, each of whom has a particular expertise and skill set.

Each home sale and purchase involves a lot of work and a team of people to help move things along. Understanding each role can help you manage what needs to happen at any point in the listing or buying process.  Your agent is your main contact, and can help navigate the cast of characters.  Hopefully this article will give you a good head start.

Author’s Note – If you enjoy reading our Midtown KC Post articles, and might be buying or selling your own home, please contact us. We enjoy writing these, and love helping people.

Lauren Hruby Real Estate


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