What to Ask a Realtor when Buying a House

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Buying a house is an exciting as well as a tedious task, especially for first time homebuyers. From searching the market and making a rational offer to closing the deal, everything is new for them. Canada Property Listing’s buying guide can help you go through the entire process quite smoothly. You always have the option of buying a house privately or hiring the services of a realtor (a real estate agent) to help you through every step of the way. If you opt to buy the house privately, and have scheduled an appointment with the realtor of the seller to view the property, it is a great idea to go mentally prepared with questions that you should ask him/her to get the most out of the opportunity. Some of the basic things that you must ask the seller’s realtor when buying a house are:

Seller’s Buying Price

The real estate market changes considerably over time, so it is important to know whether the value of the property has gone up or down since the current owner of the house bought it. If the asking price of the house is considerably lower than the price the current owner had paid to buy it a few years ago, then there are chances that the prices will recover and go up in the future, so consider buying the property, given it suits your lifestyle and requirements. Asking the seller’s buying price is particularly important in a situation when you are planning to sell the house in the next few years.

Short Sale

Usually the potential home buyers or their agents know whether the house they are considering for purchase is available for short sale or not. If so, carry out further investigation to find out the reason behind the bank granting a short sale, and assess whether that reason will affect you and your family in future.

A short sale is a transaction in which the earnings from selling the property are less than what is owed on the mortgage against the property, and the owner is unable to repay the full amount. In this case the lenders agree to release their lien on the property and accept less than the amount owed on the debt.

Schools and amenities in the Area

While surveying the neighborhood and the locality should be part of your viewings, ask the realtor about the number of schools and other amenities (shopping arcades, recreational facilities etc) in the area.

Some additional questions

How long has the property been in the market?

Is the original seller in a position to make a quick decision if an offer is presented?

Is this the seller’s prime residence or rental property?

For how long have the current owners been living in this house?

What are the fixtures/appliances included in the selling price i.e. dish washer, clothes dryer, refrigerator, furniture etc?

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