5 Austin Experts You Need in Your Real Estate Corner

Embarking on buying a home can be a complex process made more complicated by not assembling the right team of Austin experts. To achieve your transaction goals and protect your interests, you need an excellent real estate agent, title company and escrow officer, mortgage lender, home inspector, and an appraiser on your side. Explained below are essential Austin experts, what they do, and why they’re needed in your real estate transaction.

Excellent Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent is a licensed professional who serves as a representative in real estate transactions for buyers and sellers. First-rate Realtors possess strong local market knowledge, good track records, are proactive, and listen to understand your needs. Not only do they walk you through the transaction, but they negotiate on your behalf, relay relevant market data analyses, handle paperwork, and connect you with other necessary experts.

Agent services are hard to replicate on your own, as their expertise eases the process and limits the chance of mistakes. In fact because of this, buyer and seller agent use are at historical highs of around 88 percent, states the National Association of REALTORs (NAR) 2017 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.

Title Company and Escrow Officer

Title companies and escrow officers are the administrators of the transaction between the two parties. They facilitate the legal documents and incorporate the finance and loan documents from the lender. Together, they open, maintain, and close all real estate transactions.

Title companies transfer property ownership, issue title insurance, review condition of title on the property, and file deed documents. Escrow officers work to gather transaction documents like loan paperwork, terms of sale, and receive funds in the escrow account. It is essential to work with a reputable title company and escrow officer during the process of buying and selling a home.

Photo credit: Works

Mortgage Lender

We strongly encourage our buyers to meet with a mortgage lender as soon as they start the home buying process. A mortgage lender is usually a financial institution (bank, credit union, or mortgage company) that provides funds for loans that are repaid over 15 or 30 years with specific interest rates and consequences for default. With NAR’s 2017 Profile report stating 88 percent of buyers financed their home purchase, lenders make owning a home possible.

These Austin experts evaluate credit histories and scores, pre-approve loans, check assets and income, and provide buyers with pre-qualified and pre-approval letters. They show sellers if potential buyers can afford their listing, and provide necessary information to create buyer’s price ranges. Different lending institutions offer different financing options based on the needs of the client, we suggest you meet with several mortgage lenders and find the one that can best service your needs.

Home Inspector

Home inspectors examine properties for defects, major or minor issues that might or have already developed, and look for anything that affects insurance, the ability to buy the home, or safety. They investigate the overall state of the plumbing, foundation, roofs, attics, fireplaces, air conditioners, appliances, electrical, and the whole interior and exterior of the home – they check it ALL!

Home inspections provide home quality analysis and the amount of expected maintenance. By having the property inspected, buyers are made aware of any defects and can avoid potentially expensive surprises.

Photo credit: Risinger Homes

Appraiser

Appraisers are licensed to estimate property value based on location, condition, previous appraisals, income potential, and sales of similar properties. They tour the property to determine overall condition, look for amenities and health or safety violations, and determine value through comparable home sales.

Most commonly, appraisal reports are issued through your mortgage lender to help buyers gain loan approval. As the asking price and actual value can differ, the appraisal can help determine true worth from a neutral perspective. Although the report is a time and money investment, it’s critical for buyers when obtaining a loan.

Have you worked with these Austin experts before? Did they help or hurt your home purchase or sale? Let us know your thoughts on our Facebook and Twitter pages.