Tag Archives: Buyer’s Agent

The Deal About Zillow

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 12.06.30 PM      As millions turn to Zillow to begin their home shopping experience please know the conflict it can cause you when buying, or selling your home. The website is an automated property value estimate that is calculated from public  and user submitted data which is computed 3 times per week. Three times per week?! Public and user submitted data is not information you can get from your local Real Estate Agent, or Appraiser who inspect the subject properties, know the current market conditions, location and special features of a home.

Zillow’s CEO Spencer Rascoff admits to their “median error rate” in home pricing. At the bottom of Zillow’s home page you will find a Zestimate tab where you can read more about their accuracy in your market area.Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 12.07.04 PM

Catchy word that has implied meaning, Zestimate is as it sounds, an estimate of a home’s value. Rascoff also admits that these Zestimates have an error rate of 8%-26%. Houston, we have a problem! In fact, we have such a large real estate market that on Zillow’s accuracy table, Houston doesn’t even score on error rate.

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I do give Rascoff credit though, he does advise that Zestimates are no more than a starting point in pricing discussions with the real authorities, your local Real Estate Agents and Appraisers.

Admittedly I have used Zillow from time to time for a quick property search, but always question the “freshness” of the information. When you are wanting reliable information on homes for sale, you can find it on HAR.com.                      Unlike Zillow that updates their information 3 times per week, HAR updates accurately every 15 minutes!

For quality results in buying, or selling your home find the experts. Invest in contacting your local agent who has access to true market information and will get your needs met.


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Filed under Home Buying, Home Trends, Neighborhood News

Step 5, Choosing The Right Home

Step 5: Choose a Home

10 Steps to Home Ownership

There’s no doubt that choosing a home is a big decision and you want to do it right.

As a buyer, here’s what actually happens. A home has been placed on the market for which the seller has established an asking price as well as other terms. In effect, this is an offer. At this point, you have three choices: accept the seller’s offer and create a contract; reject it and not make an offer; or suggest different terms and make a counter-offer. If you choose this last option, the seller may accept, reject or make a counter-offer.

No aspect of the home buying process is more complex, personal or variable than bargaining between buyers and sellers. This is the point where the value of an experienced REALTOR® is clearly evident because he or she knows the community, has seen numerous homes for sale, knows local values and has spent years negotiating realty transactions.

Is it THE house?
A house is shelter, but a home is far more. It’s where you live, relax, entertain friends, raise families, and work. A home is where you spend much of your life, and so choosing a house is an enormous decision.

How do you know if a house is THE one? Probably the best approach is to look at as many homes as possible, something made easy by Realtor.com, where you can quickly and easily view huge numbers of homes, check prices, take video tours and view extensive neighborhood information. Once your choices have been narrowed, you can then contact a local REALTOR® to find specific information and options.

Can you really afford it?
Remember Step 2 – the pre-approval process? Getting pre-approved means you have a very good idea of how much you can borrow, what loan programs will most likely work best in your situation and how much home you can afford.

How reliable is a pre-approval? While pre-approval is not a loan commitment, it’s still necessary for lenders to check such items as appraisals and the latest credit reports. Despite fluctuating interest rates, pre-approval nonetheless provides a reasoned, careful analysis of what you can afford. After all, loan officers are routinely paid only when loans are originated. It doesn’t make much sense for loan officers to suggest high loan limits that later can’t be delivered.

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Why Use a Buyer’s Agent?

By Inner Loop Living

Comfort in working with an ABR

What is a Buyer’s agent and why do I need one? Well there is a lot to know and a lot to miss out on when looking for your new home. After you find that perfect home there is even more to know and do.

Did you know if you do not have a Buyer’s Representation Agreement with your Real Estate Agent that your agent actually represents the seller of the home you are about to buy? That’s right, your “agent” has the interest of the seller first, over your interest. Not smart when you are making one of the largest and most important purchases of your life.

As an Accredited Buyer’s Representative I can guide and protect through the home buying process as well as offer suggestions that only agents with an ABR know to offer.

Find more about “Why Use a Buyer’s Agent” please watch the 1.5 minute video. Be sure to check with your local MLS and find the right ABR, Buyer’s Agent for you. 

Nancy Dodd, ABR                                                                    


Houston’s Inner Loop Realtor

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Filed under ABR, Home Trends, Neighborhood News