When working with new buyer clients in Santa Barbara or Montecito – especially the first time homebuyers – I usually find myself fielding more than one question about what they should expect as they progress through the process of buying a home. Everyone already knows the big picture, of course, but in many ways it’s dissimilar from other large purchases they are used to making.
What first time homebuyers experience does differ from other purchasing situations. How it does is something the National Association of REALTORS ® seems to have accidentally answered through their latest study of homebuyers and sellers. The NAR was trying to determine what buyers want from their agents. To answer that, they compiled homebuyers’ “five biggest expectations.” To me, these five tell the tale of why we real estate practitioners are considered all but indispensible to this process…why home buying differs from other major purchases. After all, you don’t need an ‘automobile agent’ to help you shop for a new car!
First is the help we provide in finding the right home to purchase. The Santa Barbara market is an ever-changing target. Properties arrive and disappear almost daily, and each is uniquely appropriate or not depending on a given purchaser’s (especially first time home buyer’s) needs and expectations. Knowing the details of every qualified home that is currently up for sale in out area is pretty nearly a full-time job all by itself. Especially for a first time homebuyer, having a knowledgeable pro to provide the legwork is a reassuring place to start.
Once an appealing new home has been found, it’s invaluable to have help in negotiating the price. It’s usually much more comfortable (and likely to succeed) when professionals do the negotiating. They minimize the emotional factors that tend to surface whenever large amounts of money are in discussion. By determining what comparable homes are selling for, your agent gives first time homebuyers (and all homebuyers, for that matter) the most important starting reference point and a reasonable basis from which to proceed.
The same is true when it comes to providing help negotiating the terms of the sale. An experienced professional has been through many sales -- experience that alerts them to many details that are easy to overlook but become major issues in the months and years following the sale.
Assisting with the paperwork is listed last on the NAR’s punch list, but many of my clients tell me that to them, it’s just as important as any of the others. There are many forms, and making sure they are properly understood and executed in the legally required timeframe is always important.
In case you have been thinking of buying or selling a Santa Barbara property, give us a call.
Year after year one of Santa Barbara’s top realtors, our office is here in Santa Barbara & Montecito to help with your Santa Barbara home search and Montecito home search.