Hundreds of potential homebuyers flood the market each year; experiencing a spectrum of emotions: confusion, nervousness, thrill and sometimes, frustration at the overwhelming process.
The truth is, the homebuying process can be compared to the first day of school. Who would you meet? Will you make any serious mistakes? Will you meet the best friends of your entire life here? No one really knows, and in the midst of this uncertainty, the emergence of someone who knows the terrain is just pure bliss! Buying a home is one of the biggest investments an individual can make, and as a real estate agent, you can make all the difference in how this experience is shaped.
So how do you help that real estate client get the home of their dreams, a property that meets all their housing needs and is located in the perfect neighborhood? Here are a few questions to ask/answer:
1. Where is the Client’s Preferred Location?
The real estate market has witnessed some significant changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic. One of such changes is the resultant effect of people preferring homes in the suburbs to houses in city centres. In summary, the suburbs are becoming more attractive due to physical/social distancing measures! Also, since people are working from home more, they can afford to stay away from busy downtown centres.
Nonetheless, you still need to know a client’s preferred location. After tabling all their preferences, you can then guide them to the best location to choose a property that best suits their current housing needs. You can in fact use a real estate lead generation service to target leads from a specific location.
2. What is Your Client’s Budget/ How Much Down Payment Can the Client Afford?
The answer to this question will determine so many things. It would be frustrating if you find a home you think perfectly suits a client- in the right neighbourhood and all, only to discover the property is outside the client’s budget. Wasted efforts on both sides!
To totally avoid this, know what your client’s budget is. With this in mind, you can then methodically search for houses within that price range or bracket.
Again, you want to know how much of their total budget is available for down payment and closing costs of the house. Usually, down payment ranges from 5% to 20% of the house’ price. Use a property down-payment calculator to determine the exact amount
Down payment depends on the cost price of the house and can range from 5% to 20%, depending on the total house’ price and it is usually better to make a large down payment to reduce the overhead mortgage costs of the home. In some instances, this can also help exempt the client from paying for mortgage insurance.
However, regardless of how much down payment is made, the client must still be able to prove via their earnings, savings etc that they can afford the mortgage cost over time and are able to meet monthly mortgage payments!
Tabling this information before the client is sound real estate advice, and it helps in making the choice of a home seamless.
3. How many houses should be visited before finally closing a real estate deal and buying a property?
Answer: As many as possible. At least 10.
It is not unusual to have an undecided client who has so many ‘I don’t know answers’ to questions of location, type of house (e.g. condo, detached, townhouse) and so many other inquiries. As a real estate agent, you can make it easier on such clients by letting them know that it’s acceptable to visit a good number of open house events with them before finally closing a deal. This way, they can compare various features of different homes and choose the one that resonates most with them.
Every excellent real estate agent knows this:
Here is a bonus point. Once you are done dealing with your customer, get them to write a review for you. You can use one of the review building platform for this..
Interesting related article: “What is a Mortgage?“