Profile picture for Charles Carron

Charles Carron

Premier Agent

Virginia Real Estate Sales Person (15 years experience)

Specialties:
Buyer's Agent,
Listing Agent,
Relocation

Advice

  • (115 Contributions,
  • 5 Best Answers,
  • 49 Helpful)

Contributions are sorted newest to oldest.

Question about the 6% realtors commissions, and using the seller's agent

Answer

My third point was dropped from my previous post. 3. If you had an effective buyer agent, you would have known about this house as soon as it was listed, you would have known what the "comparables" had sold for recently, you would have been able to see the house right away (usually before any open house), you would have known if other offers were being made, etc.  You may want to rethink your go-it-alone approach.  Ask friends and coworkers who have bought homes recently whether they had a buyer agent and if so, whether they think the buyer agent was worth what he or she earned on the transaction. (The brokers' commissions are stated on the closing statement.)If this post was helpful please click the "thumbs up" icon.

  (2)
Question about the 6% realtors commissions, and using the seller's agent

Answer

A few more thoughts based on my experience as both a listing agent (representing the seller) and a buyer's agent:1. For the listing agent to represent the buyer, both parties must consent.  The seller may not consent to his or her agent also representing you.  In that situation, you would be "unrepresented," and the listing agent could perform only ministerial acts for you, such as drafting the contract and opening the door for you when you have your home inspection. If you were unrepresented, the listing agent could not advise you, and anything the listing agent learned from you that would benefit the seller, the listing agent could--in fact, must--share with the seller.2. Whether the listing agent was acting as a dual agent (representing the seller and you) or just helping you as an unrepresented buyer, there is quite a lot of work involved in shepherding the contract to closing, including ensuring that the contingencies are satisfied, you get the necessary homeowner's insurance, your financing is approved, etc.  In my experience, I spend 25 to 30 hours between contract and closing when representing a buyer. In your scenario, you suggest 1% more for the listing agent (which as another poster noted, is split between the agent and his or her broker, however they have agreed).  As a listing agent, I would not take on the added work, and time away from other clients, for my share of that 1%.  In my listing agreements, it's common for me already to have agreed with the seller that if I get a "direct" unrepresented buyer, the commission is reduced to a specified percentage.  However, it is not reduced so low that my broker and I are earning only 1% for all the work I will do to assist an unrepresented buyer.

  (2)
Purchasing a home for personal residence and then turning into a rental?

Answer

Once you vacate and offer the property for rent, be sure to contact your insurance company and change your policy from Homeowner to Landlord.  An insurance agent can explain why this is important.  It probably will save you some money because you will not be insuring furniture and other contents.  Also be sure that you require your tenants to obtain renter's insurance, which covers their furniture and possessions and has some liability coverage in case, for example, their dog bites someone.

  (0)
Rental/Investment Property

Answer

In my experience, both as a real estate investor and a real estate agent, detached houses (even small houses) are better investments than condos.  The rent on a house may (barely) cover your mortgage, insurance (be sure to switch from standard homeowners' to a landlord-tenant policy when you move out), real estate taxes, maintenance, repairs and management fees if you engage a company to manage your rental.  The rent on a condo is unlikely to cover all of those plus the condo fee. As for location, my advice is to buy as close to a Metro station, and/or to a major employment location (such as Pentagon or Washington Headquarters Service) as you can afford because you will find tenants more easily. There are neighborhoods in Alexandria just west of I-395 between Seminary Rd. and Little River Turnpike that meet those criteria and the smaller, less fancy houses should be in your price range. Others posting on this site may have entirely different perspectives.  If this was helpful please click on the thumbs-up icon.

  (1)
Rental/Investment Property

Answer

In my experience, both as a real estate investor and a real estate agent, detached houses (even small houses) are better investments than condos.  The rent on a house may (barely) cover your mortgage, insurance (be sure to switch from standard homeowners' to a landlord-tenant policy when you move out), real estate taxes, maintenance, repairs and management fees if you engage a company to manage your rental.  The rent on a condo is unlikely to cover all of those plus the condo fee. As for location, my advice is to buy as close to a Metro station, and/or to a major employment location (such as Pentagon or Washington Headquarters Service) as you can afford because you will find tenants more easily. There are neighborhoods in Alexandria just west of I-395 between Seminary Rd. and Little River Turnpike that meet those criteria and the smaller, less fancy houses should be in your price range. Others posting on this site may have entirely different perspectives.  If this was helpful please click on the thumbs-up icon.

  (0)
True or false ? "Exclusive right to represent buyer agreement" is required in Virginia by law .

Answer

Yes, you have to sign a buyer agency agreement before an agent can show you properties or perform other real estate services. However, the agreement does NOT need to be exclusive.  Most agents will not work with buyers on a non-exclusive basis because they don't want to invest a lot of time and then have the buyer make an offer through the seller's (listing) agent or another buyer agent.  But Virginia law does NOT require an exclusive contract between the buyer and buyer agent.

  (0)
Buying with more than two buyers

Answer

I have seen a third signature line inserted by pen in the margins of the pages that require signatures (even the side margin if there is no room at the bottom). Most pages only require initials, which easily can be squeezed in. If you have an agent, s/he should be advising you on technical issues like this.

  (0)
Urgent Question: Potential Gas Leak Problem + Closing Soon

Answer

Do you have a buyer agent?  If so, ask your buyer agent to recommend an experienced real estate attorney, and get his/her advice before proceeding to settlement.  If you don't have a buyer agent, or s/he doesn't have an attorney to recommend, call your state's bar association and ask if they have a lawyer referral service, and ask them to refer you to a real estate attorney.  By the way, if there is an attorney at a title company handling the closing, that attorney cannot advise you or represent you; that lawyer represents the lender and facilitates the transaction. Regardless of whether you go forward with the transaction, you should not spend any time at the house until you have had the gas company, or a licensed gas technician/plumber, confirm for you that there is no gas leak.  If this was helpful please click the "thumbs up" icon below.

  (0)
buying older homes

Answer

I always advise my buyer clients to make their offer to purchase a property contingent upon a home inspection, giving at least 10 days to cancel the contract (or renegotiate the price) if defects are found.  Then I encourage them to pick an inspector who is a member of the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) which you can easily search on the internet.  These inspectors, in my experience, do a very thorough job evaluating everything that is visible including in the attic, and they will identify any defects.  An older home, well maintained, may be in better condition that a newer home that was poorly built or poorly maintained.  If this was helpful, please click the "thumbs up" icon below.

  (0)