Our team at Island Equity Real Estate has a lot to say on this topic. With years of experience in the Florida Keys, we have seen the good, the bad and the ugly in real estate transactions. Buying a home or selling a property is much like juggling — and the more experience a person has juggling, the more likely they will be successful and not drop the ball. Our Realtors anticipate problems and prevent them before they become disastrous. Our boutique services yield big results in a positive direction.
The Realtors at Island Equity Real Estate are members of the National Association of Realtors and the Florida Keys Board of Realtors. The majority of our team has served on the Board of Directors for the Florida Keys Board of Realtors. They are current in their industry education and well-versed in the unique issues you may encounter when buying or selling real estate in the Florida Keys. From constantly-changing environmental regulations and insurance guidelines to zoning and permitting specifications, Island Equity Real Estate has the expertise to get you the results you want.
The National Association of Realtors suggests the following reasons to use a Realtor:
1. Your REALTOR® can help you determine your buying power — that is, your financial reserves plus your borrowing capacity. Our Realtors have experience with a variety of buyers and a variety of lenders.
2. Your REALTOR® has many resources to assist you in your home search.
3. Your REALTOR® can assist you in the selection process by providing objective information about each property.
4. Your REALTOR® can help you negotiate. There are a myriad of negotiating factors, including but not limited to price, financing, terms, date of possession and often the inclusion or exclusion of repairs and furnishings or equipment. The purchase agreement should provide a period of time for you to complete appropriate inspections and investigations of the property before you are bound to complete the purchase. Your agent can advise you as to which investigations and inspections are recommended or required.
5. Your REALTOR® provides due diligence during the evaluation of the property. Depending on the area and property, this could include inspections for termites, dry rot, asbestos, faulty structure, roof condition, spalling, to name a few. Your REALTOR® can assist you in finding qualified responsible professionals to do most of these investigations and provide you with written reports. You will also want to see a preliminary report on the title of the property. Title indicates ownership of property and can be mired in confusing status of past owners or rights of access. The title to most properties will have some limitations; for example, easements (access rights) for utilities. Your REALTOR®, title company or attorney can help you resolve issues that might cause problems at a later date.
6. Your REALTOR® can guide you through the closing process and make sure everything flows together smoothly.
7. When selling your home, your REALTOR® can give you up-to-date information on what is happening in the marketplace and the price, financing, terms and condition of competing properties. These are key factors in getting your property sold at the best price, quickly and with minimum hassle.
8. Your REALTOR® markets your property to other real estate agents and the public. Often, your REALTOR® can recommend repairs or cosmetic work that will significantly enhance the salability of your property. Your REALTOR® markets your property to other real estate agents and the public. In many markets across the country, over 50% of real estate sales are cooperative sales; that is, a real estate agent other than yours brings in the buyer. Your REALTOR® acts as the marketing coordinator, disbursing information about your property to other real estate agents through a Multiple Listing Service or other cooperative marketing networks, open houses for agents, etc. The REALTOR® Code of Ethics requires REALTORS® to utilize these cooperative relationships when they benefit their clients.
9. Your REALTOR® will know when, where and how to advertise your property. There is a misconception that advertising sells real estate. The NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® studies show that 82% of real estate sales are the result of agent contacts through previous clients, referrals, friends, family and personal contacts. When a property is marketed with the help of your REALTOR®, you do not have to allow strangers into your home. Your REALTOR® will generally prescreen and accompany qualified prospects through your property.
10. Your REALTOR® can help you objectively evaluate every buyer’s proposal without compromising your marketing position. This initial agreement is only the beginning of a process of appraisals, inspections and financing — a lot of possible pitfalls. Your REALTOR® can help you write a legally binding, win-win agreement that will be more likely to make it through the process.
12. Your REALTOR® can help close the sale of your home. Between the initial sales agreement and closing (or settlement), questions may arise. For example, unexpected repairs are required to obtain financing or a cloud in the title is discovered. The required paperwork alone is overwhelming for most sellers. Your REALTOR® is the best person to objectively help you resolve these issues and move the transaction to closing (or settlement).