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Expert Insights

The best professionals always have great advice to give. Check out some expert tips that agents and lenders are sharing with their buyers!

“Don't focus on aesthetic — think about what is or isn't permanent! The ugly popcorn ceiling can be remodeled, but 7' ceilings are for life. ”

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Kristin Stone
Home Happy
Alexandria, VA

“Make sure your home inspector is insured. This can help protect you if they miss some major issues with the home.”

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Elizabeth Ramsey Golden
@Homes Realty Group
Huntsville, AL

“Ask if there are any planned changes to a potential area. A new school might increase the value, whereas a new highway might decrease it.”

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Leslie Stewart
Century 21 New Millenium
McLean, VA

“Ask the sellers of a potential property to provide the last 12 months of utility bills. This will help you avoid unpleasant surprises.”

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Adam Gallegos
Arbour Realty
Arlington, VA

“When shopping a home loan always ask about the fees. The rate is major portion but the APR is the real shopping rate. ”

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Dan Ghaowi
Guaranteed Rate
Chicago, IL

“Drive by at night, in the morning, on weekend and weekdays. Try driving to and from work during your normal hours to get a feel for traffic.”

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Joe Liuzzi
North Hills Realty
Tustin, CA

“Arrange for your homeowner's insurance to be activated a full day before you take possession. Better safe than sorry!”

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Karri Flatla
Realty Executives Devonshire
Lethbridge, AB

“Start with location when buying a home. Many things about a house can be changed, but location isn't one of them!”

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Susan Isaacs
Coldwell Banker
Washington, DC

“Adjust your offer & expectations to be right inline with inventory levels. Is the market that you're buying in improving, declining, stable?”

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Kevin Pellatiro
Bob Parks Realty
Franklin, TN

“Avoid moving money between accounts or opening new lines of credit while your loan application is in processing.”

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Jake Ryon
First Home Mortgage
Washington, DC

“When you're ready to buy, make sure you have your pre-qualification letter and your proof of funds ready for when you find the right home.”

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John Martelotti
Robert DeFalco Realty
Staten Island, NY

“Talk with your insurance company about a 'wind mitigation inspection'. In many states, if your home passes, it will save you $100s.”

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Eddy Workinger
ReMax
Mount Dora, FL

“Buyers, get pre-approved. Don't waste your time shopping without knowing what you can afford.”

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Loren Clive
Loren Clive Realty
Kihei, HI

“Have your lender/broker provide two versions of your pre-approval letter — and submit one without the approved amount with your offer.”

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Belinda Ephraim
Town Residential
New York, NY

“When buying waterfront property, be sure to have an expert tell you whether a pool can be built without interfering with the seawall.”

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Jennie Blackburn
Blackburn Investors Realty
Tampa Bay, FL

“Bring a marble to roll on the floor when you tour homes. You'd be amazed at how quickly this can reveal structural damage.”

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Ben Kinney
Keller Williams Western Realty
Bellingham, WA

“If you want a USDA Home Loan, remember that the maps that define the eligible rural areas that qualify have changed as of March 27, 2013.”

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Steve Thorne
NC FHA Experts
Cary, NC

“A personal letter to the sellers can go a long way. Sharing a bit about who you are and why you love their home can make the difference.”

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Sara Werner Costa
Vanguard Group
San Francisco, CA

“Be sure to pull up overhead images on Bing or Google of the area. Zoom out a bit and look for any eyesores or commercial zones nearby.”

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Lisa Johnson Sevajian
Remax Partners
Andover, MA

“Ask your agent to check the 'absorption rate' for the type of property you're buying. You'll get great insight into the marketplace.”

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Jeff Riber
ERA Heavener Realty
Jacksonville, FL
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