Making an Offer
Before the offer to purchase is created, it is very important in our market that you have been pre-approved by a lender. This is one of the best negotiating tools a buyer can have. It shows the seller that you are financially able to purchase the home.
When you are buying a home, the Seller is required to disclose any problems that they are aware of with the property. For example, it is illegal to withhold information about major physical defects on the property, about past roof leaks, even landscaping issues. However, these disclosures don't always paint the entire picture of the home. Here are some questions your Realtor may want to ask the other side that can offer additional insight about the prospective home before you make a final decision.
1) Most importantly, why is the seller selling the house? This question may help you evaluate the "real value" of the property. Is there something about the house the seller does not like? Are they moving out of the area? Is their family growing in size? Remember that all Realtors are bound by a duty of Honesty to all parties at all times, so you can accept the other sides answer as being honest.
2) What does the seller like most about the property? By asking the seller what he or she likes most about the property, you might get some interesting information. In a few cases, what a seller likes the most about a home might actually be something the buyer is looking to avoid. For example, if the seller describes his house as being in a "happening community," the buyer might consider this a negative factor because the area may be too noisy or busy for his or her taste. Old Town is not for everyone!
3) How are the neighbors? This can be a good way to find out about any noisy neighbors, barking dogs, or even future planned changes to the community. On the other hand, a response that “we have all been here 20+ years and they are wonderful” can give a useful insight that this is a desirable and stable neighborhood.
4) How are the public schools in the area? Because the value of a community is usually greatly influenced by the public schools in the area, finding out the Seller’s perception can give you some insight about the quality of the area's schools. In our area, the Park City School District is generally considered desirable.
5) What are typical utility costs on the home? In our harsh climate, some older homes can have extremely high utility costs. Also, water is very expensive here in Park City, so homes with large amounts of landscaping can have high water bills in Summer.
Knowing all you can about a prospective home, not only helps you decide if it's the home of your dreams, but what offer to make as well. We can help you get your key questions answered and give you advice on how to evaluate your findings.