Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI and Your Credit Score

Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI and Your Credit Score

Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI and Your Credit Score

Your 3-digit credit score affects nearly every facet of your financial life. The higher the score, the easier it is to achieve important milestones such as buying a car or getting a mortgage to purchase Farmington Hills MI homes for sale. Credit scores typically range from 300 (poor) – 850 (excellent) and borrowers within a certain range can qualify for a mortgage loan.

While you don’t need a perfect 850 credit score to get the best mortgage rates, there are general credit score requirements you must meet in order to take out a mortgage. For the best mortgage rates, you should try to aim for a credit score of 760 or higher. However, the minimum credit score requirements vary.

Conventional and jumbo loans are not insured by the government and will often have higher credit score requirements than government-backed loans, such as VA loans or USDA loans. The VA itself doesn’t have a minimum credit score requirement. Instead, it requires lenders to look at the overall loan profile.

Mortgage lenders may set their own underwriting requirements, and many lenders want to see a credit score of 620 or higher. There’s also no minimum credit score requirement for a USDA Loan, and you can possibly get approved for one with a 620, 600, or even a 580 credit score. 

Having a higher credit score makes a big difference in the amount of money you pay over the course of a loan. Credit scores in the higher range can save you thousands of dollars in interest payments over the life of a mortgage.

Minimum FICO Credit Score Requirements for Several Mortgage Loans 

1). Conventional Loans 

Borrowers need a minimum credit score of 620 (Fair) to qualify for a conventional mortgage loan. Conventional loans follow standards set by government-sponsored mortgage loan companies, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, and may be secured by one of these companies or a private lender. 

Conventional loans are more affordable and are divided into conforming or non-conforming loans based on whether they conform or follow lending rules set forth by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Conforming loans follow standards such as maximum loan amounts and non-conforming loans may exceed those limits.

2). Jumbo Loans

Borrowers need a minimum credit score of 680 (Good) to qualify for a non-conforming jumbo loan. A jumbo loan exceeds the maximum loan amount limits set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency ( FHFA), responsible for overseeing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as the 11 Federal Home Loan (FHL) banks. 

Jumbo loans are not eligible to be insured by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, which means lenders take on more risk in the case borrowers default on the loan. Borrowers need to meet higher credit score requirements of at least 680 due to the larger loan amounts and riskier nature of these loans. As with conforming conventional loans, down payments vary.

3). FHA Loans

Borrowers need a minimum credit score of 500 (poor) with 10% down or a score of 580 (fair) with 3.5% down. Insured by the Federal Housing Administration, an FHA loan is an option for borrowers who are considered a higher risk due to low credit scores and little money to put toward a down payment. Credit score requirements differ based on how much money you plan to put down. 

Borrowers with a higher credit score can qualify to make a lower down payment. With a down payment of less than 20%, lenders will typically require borrowers to take out private mortgage insurance (PMI) to cover the cost if you default. Although PMI costs extra, it allows buyers who cannot make a significant down payment (or those who choose not to) to obtain financing at affordable rates. 

PMI typically costs 0.5% – 1% of your loan amount per year. So, for example:  if you buy a $300,000 home, you would be paying anywhere between $1,500 – $3,000 per year in mortgage insurance. This cost is broken into monthly installments to make it more affordable.

4). VA Loans

VA loans are insured by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs and are designed for eligible members of the military community and their spouses. The VA doesn’t set a minimum credit score requirement for the VA loan, but also does not make the loan. Lenders who do make the loans will typically have a credit score benchmark. Although the benchmark can vary from lender to lender, a 620 (fair) credit score is a common requirement for a VA loan. 

When determining credit eligibility for a VA loan, lenders will analyze the borrower’s credit profile. This generally includes pulling credit reports from the three major credit-reporting agencies (Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian) and taking the middle, or median, score as your credit score for VA loan qualification.

In addition to your credit score, your lender will consider past credit patterns to determine willingness to repay. A borrower who has made timely payments for at least the past 12 consecutive months demonstrates a willingness to repay future credit obligations. Conversely, a borrower with late payments, judgments, and delinquent accounts may not be a good candidate for loan approval.

5). USDA Loans

Although USDA loans don’t officially have a minimum credit score requirement, most lenders prefer a minimum credit score of 640. The U.S. Department of Agriculture guarantees a mortgage issued by a participating local lender, similar to an FHA loan and VA-backed loans, allowing you to get low mortgage interest rates, even without a down payment. If you put little or no money down, you will have to pay PMI. 

Borrowers typically finance these fees into the loan rather than pay them in cash. Because USDA loans are designed to spur development in rural areas, they are one of the few mortgage programs that require borrowers to purchase property in a specified geographic area. The good news is most of the U.S. is considered eligible outside of urban areas. 

The Takeaway

If you are currently planning on buying a home in Farmington Hills MI, you’ll want to check your credit reports and scores as soon as possible. The better your credit history, the more likely you are to receive a good interest rate on your mortgage loan. Lenders will use your credit reports and scores as important factors in determining whether you qualify for a loan, and what interest rate to offer you.  

If there are errors on your credit report, you may have trouble qualifying for a loan. Review your credit reports and take steps to fix any errors. You have the right to a free copy of your credit report once per year from each of the three companies (Equifax, Transunion, and Experian) at www.annualcreditreport.com

Partner with Top-rated Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® -Tom Gilliam

Whether you are interested in buying a home in Farmington Hills, MI, or its time to list your current property, experience matters most in a changing market. Offering over 20 years of local experience, top-rated Farmington Hills REALTOR® – Tom Gilliam offers in-depth local market knowledge and access to the most up-to-date listings. Tom is known for his professionalism and is an expert at uncovering the perfect home for his clients’ lifestyle needs in the right Farmington Hills neighborhood or community. 

2020 Best of Farmington Hills REALTOR - Tom GilliamFor sellers, Tom will create a comprehensive marketing plan that exposes your home to the public as well as to other real estate agents through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), other cooperative marketing networks, open houses for agents, and so on.

Your listing will appear on all the most popular real estate sites where buyers spend hours a day looking at homes such as Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, REMAX, Redfin, and dozens of others. Your property will also be featured on Tom’s own highly-trafficked website Homes2moveyou.com. You can be assured that your home will get sold quickly and for the highest market price.  

Farmington Hill MI Homes for Sale

Tom works very hard for his clients. As your agent, Tom will protect your interests, negotiate on your behalf, advocate for you, and be your trusted guide and advisor throughout the home buying or selling process. If you or someone you know is interested in Farmington Hills MI real estate, please give Tom Gilliam a call today at (248) 790-5594 or you can reach him here.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Tom @ Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578

Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI: Home Inspection Tips

Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI: Home Inspection Tips

 Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI: Home Inspection Tips

Buying a home in Farmington Hills MI is a lengthy process, and will likely be one of the biggest financial decisions you make in your lifetime. Even if you find a great deal on the cost of a house, there are several other fees that will sneak in such as private mortgage insurance, closing costs, broker fees, etc. 

Hence, you might be tempted to forego the home inspection, especially since it’s one more cost added to the pot. Even if your prospective home looks immaculate, you should still get an inspection because it could potentially save you thousands of dollars and aggravation down the road. 

What You See May not be What You Get

When looking at Farmington Hills MI homes for sale, what you see may not be exactly what you get. Most sellers are going to have their home looking its best for prospective buyers. You may “see” attractive pots of colorful flowers on the front porch, freshly painted walls, attractive granite countertops, gleaming hardwood floors, and other touches that catch your eye. 

What you won’t see are things like cracks in the foundation, antiquated plumbing, dangerous wiring, appliances that don’t work, or other hidden issues that might only get revealed by hiring a professional home inspector.  

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A qualified Farmington Hills home inspector’s job is to assess the condition of the property, including its heating and cooling systems, plumbing, electrical work, water and sewage, and some fire and safety issues. The inspector will also look for evidence of insect, water, or fire damage or any other issue that may affect the value of the property. 

When The Home Inspection is Done

Typically, a home inspection is done after a sales contract or purchase agreement between the buyer and a seller has been signed. Therefore, it’s important that the contract include an inspection contingency or due diligence contingency, which allows the buyer time to find an inspector, schedule and attend the inspection, receive the inspector’s report, and decide how to proceed based on the information it includes. 

It’s a good idea to choose a home inspector early in the home buying process so you can schedule your inspection as soon as a seller accepts your offer. Good inspectors can be in high-demand, especially in the springtime when the majority of homes are sold. 

You should also budget for additional examinations in case the inspector finds problems or mentions issues that need further investigation, such as mold,  asbestos, or additions made without a permit. Whether the seller will give you more time to complete additional inspections is subject to negotiation. It’s up to the seller to agree or not.  

Preparing A Home Inspection Checklist  

You can prepare for the home inspection by making a list of the areas of the house you want to be checked before the inspector arrives. The following items should be included on your checklist:

  • Foundation
  • Roof
  • Attic space
  • Rain gutters and downspouts
  • Exterior stucco or paint
  • Electrical panel, light switches, and power outlets
  • Thermostats and heating, cooling, and ventilation (HVAC) system
  • Plumbing fixtures, faucets, and water heater
  • Appliances
  • Walls, ceilings, and floors
  • Doors and windows
  • Stairs, steps, and railings
  • Walkways and driveways
  • Porches and balconies
  • Basement
  • Garage

A professional Farmington Hills MI home inspection will likely take at least a few hours, and it’s a good idea to be present during the inspection if you can. That way you can find out as much as possible about the true condition of the home and ask the inspector about any findings that might concern you.

Additional Items To Consider

Keep in mind that since home inspectors are mainly concerned with the physical components of the property, there may be items about the home that are left out of the inspection, such as trees and landscaping, lawn sprinklers, sewer line, fireplace and chimney, swimming pool equipment, floors covered by carpeting, drainage, mice, rats, or other rodents, and wood pests such as termites or carpenter ants.

Inspectors typically won’t estimate repair costs, the remaining life of appliances, or other systems for you. If you are concerned about particular items, you may need to get your own repair and replacement bids from local contractors.   

Home Inspection Assessment

Depending on the inspection report, you may decide to proceed with the sale, schedule additional inspections, renegotiate the sale price with the seller (if there are serious issues), ask that certain repairs be made, or cancel the contract altogether. If you request major repairs, you may also ask for a re-inspection with the original inspector to verify that the original issue(s) has been resolved. 

Takeaway

Since the Farmington Hills home you buy will probably be one of the biggest, most valuable purchases you will ever make, a professional home inspection will help ensure that you’re making the right home purchase decision and a sound investment. 

Partner with Top-rated Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® -Tom Gilliam

2020 Best of Farmington Hills REALTOR - Tom GilliamWhether you are interested in buying a home in Farmington Hills, MI, or its time to list your current property, experience matters most in a changing market.

With over 20 years of local experience, Farmington Hills REALTOR® – Tom Gilliam offers in-depth local market knowledge and access to the most up-to-date listings.

Known for his professionalism and care for every detail, Tom is an expert at uncovering the perfect home for his clients’ lifestyle needs in the right Farmington Hills neighborhood or community.

Search Farmington Hill MI homes for sale

For sellers, Tom will create a comprehensive marketing plan that exposes your home to the public as well as to other real estate agents through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), other cooperative marketing networks, open houses for agents, and so on.

Your listing will appear on all the most popular real estate sites where buyers spend hours a day looking at homes such as Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, REMAX, Redfin, and dozens of others. Your property will also be featured on Tom’s own highly-trafficked website Homes2moveyou.com. You can be assured that your home will get sold quickly and for the highest market price.  

Tom works very hard for his clients. He will protect your interests, advocate for you, and be your trusted guide and advisor throughout the home buying or selling process. If you or someone you know is interested in Farmington Hills MI real estate, please give Tom a call today at (248) 790-5594 or you can reach him here.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Tom @ Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578

House Hunting With The Right Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®

House Hunting With The Right Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®

House Hunting With The Right Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®  – Most first-time homebuyers will agree that the only thing more exciting than shopping for your first house is the day you move in. That being said, shopping for the right house can put even the most seasoned shoppers to the test.

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, 56% of buyers of all generations believe that picking the right house is by far the most challenging step in the home buying process. Even with the ability to search online 24/7 for houses, 52% of buyers say that help in finding the right home to purchase is what they want most from a REALTOR®.

That is because the information you find on websites doesn’t compare to the local knowledge and expertise an experienced agent brings to the table. However, not all real estate agents are equal.

If you hire an agent and red flags about their performance are coming at you left and right, you need to quickly decide if you want to respectfully cut ties and find another. Since buyers agents don’t get paid during the house hunting phase, you don’t want to string them along and waste both your time and theirs. Of course, the best course of action is to partner with the right agent from the get-go. 

What You Should Expect From Your Real Estate Agent and Red Flags 

Here are a few things you should expect from your real estate agent and a few red flags to look out for:

1). A qualified Farmington Hills MI real estate agent should be able to provide in-depth knowledge of the area. If they have to Google an area you asked about, send you homes outside your desired area, or they can’t tell you about an area’s proximity to local shops, restaurants, walking trails, or commuting times, this may be a red flag that they are not the right agent for you.

2). A good real estate agent will take the time to understand all the facts about your situation. The last thing you want to do is spend your time house-hunting, find a home you love, and get your heart set on it, only to find out that there’s some restriction that doesn’t allow you to buy. Experiences like that can be avoided upfront with an agent who takes the time to understand everything about you, your time frame, your budget, and what type of mortgage you qualify for.

3). Your agent should be objective and act as a consultant rather than a salesperson. If your REALTOR® is pushing you towards a house that’s not the best match, you feel pressured to just hurry up and buy, or you don’t like something about a house and voice concerns and they’re not considering your perspective, it may be a red flag that the agent is more interested in their sales commission than helping you find the right home.  

4). You want a Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® who keeps their finger on the pulse of the market, who’s got all the listing alerts set up and is the first to know when new inventory becomes available. Your agent should provide you with access to the most up-to-date listings so that you don’t miss out on your dream home. 

If your agent rarely if ever sends you houses or you often find listings that match your specific home criteria long before they do, its probably an indication they’re not on top of the MLS or working that hard on your behalf.

Finding The Right Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®  

Here are a few tips for finding the right Farmington Hills MI real estate agent to work with from the beginning:

You will want to interview at least 3 real estate agents before committing to just one. Compare your choices based on performance such as the number of transactions they’ve completed in your target neighborhoods, how much money they save clients on average, and the percent of the list price their buyer clients end up paying, on average. 

You also want to ask them important questions like how well they know the area, how many clients they currently represent and how many they work with at one time, the kind of properties they help their clients buy (single-family homes, condos, townhomes), their experience working with first-time homebuyers, and what separates them from their competition.  

The Takeaway

Since the agent you choose will be by your side from house hunting to closing, you want to make sure you hire an experienced and professional Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® with the expertise you can trust and a personality you’ll enjoy working with. 

Why You Should Partner with Top-rated Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® -Tom Gilliam

2020 Best of Farmington Hills REALTOR - Tom GilliamWhether you are interested in buying a home in Farmington Hills, MI, or its time to list your current property, experience matters most in a changing market.

With over 20 years of local experience, Farmington Hills REALTOR® – Tom Gilliam is very familiar with the local market and has access to the most up-to-date listings. Tom is known for his professionalism and is an expert at uncovering the perfect home for his clients’ lifestyle needs in the right neighborhood or community.

Search Farmington Hill MI homes for sale

For sellers, Tom will create a comprehensive marketing plan that exposes your home to the public as well as to other real estate agents through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), other cooperative marketing networks, open houses for agents, and so on.

Your listing will appear on all the most popular real estate sites where buyers spend hours a day looking at homes such as Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, REMAX, Redfin, and dozens of others. Your home will also be featured on Tom’s own highly-trafficked website Homes2moveyou.com. You can be assured that your property will get sold quickly and for the highest market price.  

Tom works very hard for his clients. He will protect your interests and be there as your trusted guide and advisor throughout the home buying or selling process. If you or someone you know is interested in real estate in Farmington Hills MI, please give Tom Gilliam a call at (248) 790-5594 or you can reach him here.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Tom @ Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578

Planning on Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI? Things You Can Do Now To Prepare 

Planning on Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI? Things You Can Do Now To Prepare 

Planning on Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI? Things You Can Do Now To Prepare  – Buying a home in Farmington Hills MI is a major accomplishment. It’s an opportunity to put down roots and build equity. That being said, the housing market has become more competitive, with national inventory down almost 30 percent. This is especially true when it comes to mid-priced, affordable houses. So, the sooner you start preparing to buy a house, the easier it will be to beat the competition. 

If you are in the early stages of buying a home, here are a few important steps you can take right now to prepare:

Check Your Credit

Once you have made the decision to buy a home in Farmington Hills MI, the first step is to request a credit report from all three credit reporting agencies (Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax). Your credit will determine whether or not you are eligible for a mortgage and also influences your mortgage rate. 

Most mortgage programs require a minimum credit score of 580 – 620. You will want to also check your report for accuracy and dispute any errors, especially negative errors that decrease your score A free copy of your credit report from each of the credit reporting agencies is available every 12 months from AnnualCreditReport.com.  

Figure Out Your Debt-to-Income (DTI)

Your debt-to-income ratio (DTI) plays a big role in whether you are able to qualify for a mortgage. It’s the percentage of your income that goes toward paying your monthly debts and helps lenders decide how much you can afford to borrow. DTI is as important as your credit score and job stability, if not more so. 

Most lenders prefer a DTI that’s no higher than 36%, depending on the mortgage program. DTI sometimes leaves out monthly expenses such as food, utilities, transportation costs, and health insurance, among other items. Lenders may not consider these expenses and may approve you to borrow more than you’re comfortable paying. So keep these additional obligations in mind as you evaluate how much you’re willing to pay each month.

You can improve your DTI by paying off as much debt as possible (credit cards, car loans, student loans, and other loans) before applying for a mortgage. Some lenders will allow a higher DTI, but only when a borrower has “compensating factors” such as a high credit score or a large cash reserve.  You don’t have to be debt-free to buy a home, but the less debt you have can mean more purchasing power.

Determine Your Budget

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of buying a home before asking yourself the most important question, “How much house can I afford? Before meeting with a mortgage lender, use one of the many online mortgage calculators to estimate affordability. For example, let’s say that your total monthly take-home pay is $5,000.

Multiply it by 25% to get your maximum mortgage payment. If you earn $5,000 a month, that means your monthly house payment should be no more than $1,250. Sticking with an income of $5,000 a month, you could afford the options below on a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage: 

  • $187,767 home with a 10% down payment ($18,777)
  • $211,238 home with a 20% down payment ($42,248)
  • $241,415 home with a 30% down payment ($72,424)
  • $281,650 home with a 40% down payment ($112,660)

Keep in mind that this is just a ballpark and don’t forget items like property taxes and homeowner’s insurance. Once you know what you are likely to afford, you can then estimate how much to save for your down payment and closing costs.  

Save Money

First, know how much down payment you’ll need. The majority of mortgage programs require a down payment ranging from a minimum of 3% to 5% for a conventional loan, and a minimum of 3.5% for an FHA home loan. So, if you pay $200,000 for a house, you will need a minimum of $6,000 to $10,000 for your down payment. A down payment is not required with VA and USDA loans.   

Typically, you will need to put down at least 20% to avoid paying for private mortgage insurance,  which protects the lender in the event a borrower defaults on the loan. You are also responsible for closing costs, which are an estimated 2% to 5% of the loan amount (or $4,000-$10,000 on a $200K loan).

If you are having trouble saving for a downpayment, every state has first-time home buyer down payment assistance programs (DPAs) as well as tax credits and help with closing costs. These programs are often run by Housing Finance Agencies or through grants issued by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  

Gift money from relatives or friends can also provide help for downpayment and closing costs. but it must be an outright gift and not a loan. The rules for gift money vary, depending on the loan program. In many cases, there’s no limit on the amount of gift money that can go into a down payment, as long as the buyer is purchasing a primary residence. 

Research Different Loan Programs

Even though your mortgage lender will discuss different home loan programs with you, it is always a good idea to do your own research before meeting with a lender. Once you are ready to buy, the process will be moving fast and you might not feel like you have time to explore financing options. 

No two home buyers are alike, so the best loan program for one buyer is likely unsuitable to another. It’s up to you to ask these and other questions:

  • Which loan has the lowest monthly payment?
  • What option requires the least amount upfront?
  • Which loan type is suitable for my credit score?
  • What will cost me less over time?
  • How does my income affect the products for which I’m eligible?

If you settle for the first loan that your lender offers, you might miss out on lower rates or a more affordable loan program. Knowledge will help you make the most informed choice and get the best loan for your particular situation.   

The Takeaway

Buying your first home in Farmington Hills MI is very exciting, but there’s a lot to think about before you start house hunting. Start by getting all your finances in order, managing your credit score, and comparing mortgage programs. 

Partner with Experienced Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®- Tom Gilliam

2020 Best of Farmington Hills REALTOR - Tom GilliamWhether you are interested in buying a home in Farmington Hills, MI, or its time to list your current property, experience matters most in a changing market.

With over 20 years of local experience, Farmington Hills REALTOR® – Tom Gilliam is very familiar with the local market and has access to the most up-to-date listings. Known for his professionalism and care for every detail, Tom is also an expert at uncovering the perfect home for his clients’ lifestyle needs in the right neighborhood. 

Search Farmington Hill MI homes for sale

For sellers, Tom will create a comprehensive marketing plan that exposes your home to the public as well as to other real estate agents through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), other cooperative marketing networks, open houses for agents, and so on.

Your listing will appear on all the most popular real estate sites where buyers spend hours a day looking at homes such as Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, REMAX, Redfin, and dozens of others. Your home will also be featured on Tom’s own highly-trafficked website Homes2moveyou.com. You can be assured that your property will get sold quickly and for the highest market price.  

Tom works very hard for his clients. He will protect your interests, advocate for you, and be your trusted guide and advisor throughout the home buying or selling process. If you or someone you know is interested in real estate in Farmington Hills MI, please give Tom Gilliam a call at (248) 790-5594 or you can reach him here.

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic 
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Tom @ Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578

Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI? Why You Need A REALTOR®

Buying a Home in Farmington Hills MI? Why You Need A REALTOR®

Buying a Home in Farmington Hills, MI? Why You Need A REALTOR®

If you are thinking about buying a home in Farmington Hills, MI, you will want to consider hiring a professional real estate agent to help you through one of life’s largest financial transactions. A Farmington Hills MI REALTOR®’s job is to match you with a home that fits your lifestyle needs and budget and also help you with making an offer, negotiations, the home inspection, and closing on your new place.

Some buyers may hesitate to use a professional real estate agent because they don’t want to pay the agent’s commission fee. That being said, it’s actually the seller that is responsible for paying the commission fee and not the buyer, which are typically about 5 to 6 percent of the home’s purchase price and split between the listing agent and buyer’s agent. 

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A Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® is a professional who works on your behalf and advocates for your interests. Because most sellers will have seller representation, you also want someone that has your back to represent you.

What You Will be Responsible for Without a Farmington Hill MI REALTOR® 

If you should decide not to hire a professional Farmington Hills MI real estate agent, you will be responsible for the following: 

1). You will have to uncover homes in the neighborhood or area you want to live in that match your budget and lifestyle needs. Although the many property search sites online can give you a sampling of what homes are currently available, you will have to research whether a seller’s asking price is justified based on comparable home sales in the area. 

Realtors also have access to even more listings. Sometimes properties are available but not actively advertised. A real estate agent can help you find those hidden gems. A local REALTOR® is also going to know the search area probably better than you ever could.

2). You will have to research information and important facts on a neighborhood, including those that a seller may choose not to disclose that could be important to you.  Researching local trends, market values, and other vital info can be daunting.

A real estate agent is equipped to know the ins and outs of every neighborhood. They’ll be able to tell you all about the school districts, zoning codes, the types of homes offered, and where to find everyday needs.

3). You will have to negotiate an offer, including the price and other clauses and contingencies in the purchase agreement. Any time you buy or sell a home, you’re going to encounter negotiations, which can easily get a little heated. Don’t you want a savvy professional negotiator on your side to get the best deal for you?

4). You will have to navigate the home inspection and negotiate repairs or credits with the seller. A REALTOR® will help draw up a purchase agreement that allows enough time for inspections, contingencies, and anything else that’s crucial to your particular needs.

5). You will have to sort through complex paperwork filled with real estate terms you might not understand. Real estate has its own language. It’s full of acronyms and semi-arcane jargon. A skilled real estate agent has been through all the paperwork before and actually knows what it means.

Questions? Concerns? Confused? An agent can clarify all the clauses, contingencies, and jargon-filled fine print as well as find hidden fees and conditions that you might have skimmed over.

Your Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® Will Run A Comparable Sales Analysis

One of the main tasks a REALTOR® will perform for you is a comparable sales analysis (also known as “comps”) of homes that are similar in size, condition, and age to the property you are interested in purchasing. 

Your Farmington Hills MI real estate agent will evaluate the prices of homes that are currently on the market and those that have sold in recent months to determine whether a seller’s asking price is in line with market data. Without this critical market data, you could easily end up overpaying for a home. 

As you can see, there are a lot of moving parts that go into purchasing a home. Hiring an experienced and skilled Farmington Hill MI real REALTOR® like Tom Gilliam can save you time, money, and possible headaches down the road.  

Partner With Top-rated Farmington Hills MI Real Estate Agent – Tom Gilliam

2020 Best of Farmington Hills REALTOR - Tom GilliamTop-rated Farmington Hills MI REALTOR® – Tom Gilliam has over 20 years of local experience and provides the kind of knowledge, skills, dedication, and personalized service you need and deserve when buying a home.

With access to the most up-to-date listings in Farmington Hills and surrounding Oakland County, Tom can help you explore your options and find your dream home. 

As your personal agent, Tom will protect your interests, negotiate on your behalf, advocate for you, and go the extra mile to ensure a smooth and successful transaction. 

 

Search Farmington Hill MI Homes for Sale

If you or someone you know is interested in buying a home in Farmington Hills or Oakland County, MI, please give Tom Gilliam a call today at (248) 790-5594

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Tom @ Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578

Why You need a Farmington Hills MI Real Estate Agent When Selling Your Home

Why You need a Farmington Hills MI Real Estate Agent When Selling Your Home

Why You need a Farmington Hills MI Real Estate Agent When Selling Your Home – Selling your Farmington Hills home will likely be one of the biggest transactions of your life. That’s why hiring an experienced and skilled Farmington Hills MI real estate agent should be the first step you take once you’ve decided to put your home on the market. A qualified agent can get broader exposure for your property, help you negotiate a better deal, dedicate more time to your sale, and help keep your emotions from sabotaging the deal. 

An agent brings expertise, which few home sellers have, to a complex transaction with many financial and legal pitfalls. Anyone who has ever attempted to sell a home on their own without an agent will tell you that it’s hard work, time-consuming, and also risky if you don’t know what you’re doing. You can easily set yourself at a huge disadvantage. 

A qualified Farmington Hills MI real estate agent will be able to give you up-to-date information on what is happening in your marketplace, as well as the price, financing, terms, and condition of competing properties in your area – all key factors in marketing your home and selling it at the best price. Your agent can also recommend repairs or cosmetic work that will significantly enhance the salability of your home.

Getting The Best Price for Your Home

Pricing your home correctly from the beginning is important and knowing the right value of your home can help you secure the best price. Your Farmington Hills MI real estate agent can help you evaluate the market and resist the temptation to overprice your home or give in to your fears that it won’t sell fast enough and underprice it.

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, if a home doesn’t sell within 30 days, it’s a good indication that it’s not priced right. Research also suggests that the longer a house stays on the market, the lower its final selling price will be. Sellers may end up making less money than if they would have priced their property correctly when it first listed.  

One of the best indicators of your home’s value is the sale prices of similar homes in your neighborhood that have recently sold. These comparable homes are often referred to as comps. Experienced real estate agents rely on comps and will consider ballpark parameters such as homes in the same location, homes that are the same size, homes with the same number of bedrooms/bathrooms, the sale price of similar homes that were sold within the past six months to a year, and similar home styles, views, and other details.

Marketing Your Home

A skilled and experienced Farmington Hills MI real estate agent will create an aggressive marketing strategy that exposes your home to the public as well as to other real estate agents through the MLS or Multiple Listing Service, other cooperative marketing networks, open houses for agents, and so on.

In many markets, a substantial portion of real estate sales is cooperative sales where a real estate agent other than yours brings in the actual buyer. Even if you have a large personal or professional network, those people will likely have little interest in spreading the word that your house is for sale.

You don’t have relationships with clients, other agents, or a real-estate agency to bring the largest pool of potential buyers to your home. A smaller pool of potential buyers means less demand for your property, which can translate to waiting longer to sell your home and possibly not getting as much money as your house is worth.

Seller’s Disclosures

A lot of legal paperwork is involved in selling a home, which needs to be completed correctly by an expert. One of the most important items is the seller’s disclosures. “A seller of real estate has an affirmative duty to disclose any fact that materially affects the value or desirability of the property,” says Matthew Reischer, an attorney and CEO of LegalAdvice.com. The seller can be held liable for fraud, negligence, or breach of contract if he/she does not disclose properly.  

Unless you are a real estate attorney, your Farmington Hills MI real estate agent probably knows a lot more about disclosure laws than you do. If you fail to disclose a hazard, nuisance, or defect and the buyer comes back to you after moving in, the buyer could potentially sue you. Yes, agents do sometimes make mistakes, but they have professional errors-and-omissions insurance to protect themselves and to give the buyer recourse, so the buyer may not need to pursue the seller for damages.

Resolving Issues  

Between the initial sales agreement and closing, issues may come up that may prevent buyers from closing the deal during this period. Pest damage, low appraisals, claims to title, and defects in the home inspection may slow down closing. There may be cases where the buyer or seller may get cold feet or financing may fall through. 

Other issues that can delay closing include homes in high-risk areas or uninsurability. There may be problems with the good faith estimate, or other errors may prevent closing. The required paperwork alone can be quite overwhelming for most sellers. Your Farmington Hills MI real estate agent is the best person to help you resolve these issues and move the transaction to settlement. 

The Takeaway

When selling your Farmington Hills MI home, you need to partner with a qualified real estate agent who knows the area, processes a vast network of local connections, and has the skills and experience to negotiate like a pro. Considering the relatively small cost of hiring a professional agent and the potential risks and pitfalls of not hiring one, it only makes good sense to work with a highly-skilled Farmington Hills MI real estate agent like Tom Gilliam to sell your home fast and for the best price. 

Partner With Top-rated Farmington Hills MI Real Estate Agent – Tom Gilliam

For over a decade, Tom has been helping his seller clients with their real estate goals in Farmington Hills and Oakland County, MI. After listening to your concerns and goals, Tom will start with a comparative market analysis to establish the correct price for your home. He will then execute a comprehensive marketing plan to get your home in front of as many qualified buyers as possible.

Your listing will be on all the most popular real estate sites where buyers spend hours a day looking at homes such as Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, REMAX, Redfin, and dozens of others. Your home will also be featured on Tom’s highly-trafficked website:  homes2moveyou.com.

Tom provides the kind of knowledge, skills, dedication, and personalized service you need and deserve when selling a home. He understands that frequent and open communication is paramount to a smooth and successful transaction and is always available to his clients. Tom will be there to protect your best interests, advocate for you, negotiate on our behalf, and will go the extra mile to ensure the best possible outcome – leaving no money on the table.    

If you or someone you know is interested in buying or selling real estate in Farmington Hills MI or in surrounding Oakland County, please give Tom Gilliam a call today at (248) 790-5594. 

Tom Gilliam, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Classic
29630 Orchard Lake Rd.
Farmington Hills 48334
Direct: 248-790-5594
Office: 248-737-6800
Email: Tom @ Homes2MoveYou.com
License #314578

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