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When it comes to buying a home, the most important thing you can do is have someone on your side looking out for your best interests. For a purchase as important as buying a house, you'll want to be treated fairly and kept informed of all the rules and regulations that affect you. You'll also want to be sure that you get a fair price on the home you buy. Hire a professional realtor to help you throughout the process. Realtors have the qualifications, resources and experience to find properties in your price range and homes that match your individual needs. They can help you make a successful purchase in a relatively fast and painless manner. Real estate agent can help you understand property financing, taxes, insurance and the steps you'll have to take to complete a real estate transaction.

By Realtor, we mean a licensed real estate professional who is a member of a local real estate board as well as the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and, in Ontario, the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA). When you work with a Realtor, you can expect strict adherence to provincial law and to a national code of ethics.

Your goal should be to work with the best real estate agent you can find. It pays to shop around for this individual. It is important to know in advance who the real estate agent is working for. Don't just go with the listing agent for the house you want to buy, because that listing agent is working for the home seller.

Buying a home is a very complex procedure involving large sums of money, stringent legal requirements, with the potential for making some very costly mistakes.
Protect your best interest and hire your own agent.

When you start looking for an agent, you'll find a great number of real estate agents who are eager to sell you a home. So, how do you find an agent to work for you and protect your interests?

Begin by asking for recommendations from friends, colleagues, and relatives who have purchased homes recently. Don't be swayed by an agent's number of years in business, or high sales volume. Interview more than one agent before selecting one to represent you, but don't feel that you absolutely must talk to several agents before making a choice. If you find an agent with whom you are compatible, whom you trust implicitly, who is knowledgeable and who knows the area where you want to live, search no more.

Whether you decide to buy house now or in near future, pick an agent you feel comfortable with and enlist the services of that agent as a buyer's broker. Then you become a client with all the rights, benefits and privileges created by this agency relationship, and you're no longer just a shopper.

If you have a deadline by which you must buy, let your agent know. Also make it clear that you want the agent, not his or her assistants, to represent you.

Don't be afraid to ask questions, especially about any possible service charges. Vendors normally pay a commission to the agent but some agents charge buyers a fee for their service. Discuss fees, so you'll have a clear understanding of how, and how much, your agent will earn.

You can save substantial time by allowing the Realtor to “preview” properties that fit your budget and expectations. This way, you may only have to visit a handful of homes to make a wise and informed selection. It is good idea to present your list of housing wants and needs so your agent can narrow the search for your perfect home. Discuss your target home price to avoid wasting time on homes that are outside your price range. If you haven't already been pre-approved for a mortgage, ask your agent to identify possible lenders. Expect to answer personal questions about your finances.

When you are ready to buy house, a Realtor will draw up an offer to purchase and assist with all details required to make a successful transaction, including when to bring in other professionals (lawyer, lender, home inspector, insurance broker and others).

If you would like to know more about a real estate agent's ethical obligations, click on the link below to visit the Canadian Real Estate Association's web site or call your local real estate association.


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