When buying property, whether you’re a seasoned investor or a first homebuyer, the most important relationship you will have to make is one with the real estate agent.
The agent is going to be the best person to ask when it comes to any questions regarding the property, the suburb, or the market in general.
Today we are focusing on the best ways to communicate with agents and important questions for the real estate agent that you should make sure you ask along the way.
Having a buyers’ agent is a great way to skip having to deal with agents on your own.
Before The Inspection:
Even before you start inspecting properties, you’re going to be contacting agents when you see properties that interest you.
When you call or email the agent you want to know:
- Is the property still available?
- If yes, when can I arrange a private inspection to view the property or when is the next open home?
- If no, what did the property sell for?
- How long was it on the market before it went under contract?
- Do you have any other similar properties that fit my guidelines for me to inspect instead?
You’re going to want to have your head around the market well before you even step foot into your first open home.
Make sure you know the suburb well, give yourself some time before the inspection to get a feel for the street and the area.
At The Inspection:
There are many questions you want to find out at the inspection… This is the time where you need to get your head around the property and drill the agent by finding out as much information about the property to help you make a calculated decision about whether you want to purchase it.
If you’re not sure where to start when it comes to the inspection, download a copy of our property inspection checklist to help you next time you inspect a potential investment property.
- How long has the property been on the market?
- Have you had any previous offers?
- If yes, why wasn’t it accepted? What was the offer?
- Is there anything outside of price that will appeal to the sellers?
- Have any offers previously been accepted?
- If yes, why did it fall over?
- Ask for a copy of the building and pest report if they have one?
- If you’re investing – what would the property rent for?
- Are there currently tenants in place?
- What are the rates? Council / water / strata / insurance?
- Has there been any work done to the property? If so point it out…
- Why are the owners selling?
By asking these questions you are getting an idea of why the owners are selling, how motivated they may be, if it has been on the market a long time maybe the chance of getting a discount is higher.
You want to know all costs associated with the property to work out the buying and holding costs and whether the property is going to be a profitable investment.
After The Inspection:
Once you have inspected a range of properties that suit your needs you will have an idea of what sort of property you actually want to buy, and begin to submit offers on appropriate properties.
At this stage of the process there are a few questions you need to ask the agent.
See our steps to buying an investment property to help you understand what it is you need to do at what stages.
- Can you send me a list of comparable sales in the area?
- Can I have a copy of the contract?
- If the original offer is not accepted (and the sellers are going to counter), what is the lowest price the owners will accept to have this deal done today?
- How much of an initial deposit do I need to put down (usually $1,000 – $5,000 upon signing the contract and $10,000-$15,000 balance deposit when finance goes unconditional)
- What do I do between now and unconditional stage?
- Can you keep me in the loop with when settlement is due to happen?
- Can I have my property manager gain access before the property settles to get tenants in place?
- What if there are issues with the building and pest inspection?
- Get your solicitor to apply for a reduction in price
- Pull out of the contract
- Get your solicitor to have the issues fixed as a condition of settlement
There are quite a lot of steps involved in purchasing a property, whether it is your first or your tenth purchase, the agent should be there to assist you with any questions or enquiries you have along the way.
It is in their sellers’ best interest for the real estate agent to help and educate you so they can get a prompt result for the vendor.
Image courtesy of: www.bosshunting.com.au
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