Searching for a Home

Other than getting married or selecting a career, buying a home is actually one of the most challenging, exciting and stressful decisions that the average person can make. We understand this completely. That’s why we provide the degree of education, advocacy and support that we do.

Whether you are looking for a townhouse in Plymouth, a downtown charmer in Birmingham or a condo within walking distance of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, we have you covered. Here is an overview of the Professional One Real Estate home search process:

  1. Learn Your Preferences – We conduct an extensive interview regarding the requirements that you have for your future home, including a detailed discussion of the following topics, among others:
    1. Geographic preferences
    2. Importance of school systems
    3. Price range
    4. Style preferences
    5. Square footage requirements
    6. Vintage preferences
    7. Basement preferences
    8. Garage preferences
    9. Lot size requirements
    10. Proximity to expressways requirements
    11. Proximity to cultural destinations requirements
  2. Create Prospect File – We take the information gathered in step 1, above, and enter your parameters into our MLS system (the database that includes all of the listings currently for sale by all real estate companies in our geographic territory) to create a customized “prospect file” for you.
  3. Send Listings Currently On Market – Once we complete step 2, you will receive an automated email from the MLS system that will include all of the properties currently available that satisfy your preferences.
  4. Send New Listings – Going forward, whenever a new listing is entered into the MLS (which happens literally 24/7), you will receive an email as often as once per day that will include any new properties that have come on the market in addition to the ones already provided to you at the start. This ensures that you are kept current of all listings that might be “the one” for you and your family! Sometimes, a day makes all the difference in terms of being the first to find the home of your dreams!
  5. Provide Professional Insights – Once we’ve entered you as a “prospect” and you’ve received your first batch of listings, we’ll review that group of listings with you to provide our opinions of the various options included therein. A BIG part of the home buying process is EDUCATION. What are the “good” locations? What are the “bad locations? What is a good price for a particular sub? We WANT you to know the market, because at the end of the day if you aren’t happy with your decision, then we have failed you. That’s why a Professional One Real Estate agent will NEVER “rush you” or “push you” to make a decision. We want you to look at as many homes as you need to see to feel comfortable making a decision. It’s that simple.
  6. Learn the Communities – After you’ve had a chance to review some listings on paper to get a feel for the current market in your price range, we typically go on a tour of the various communities that you are considering to give you a “big picture” overview of the market. We believe that you should choose the community first, and THEN find the home within the community that best suits you. We also respect that some of our clients feel that the home is more important than the community, and we of course respect those opinions.
  7. Home Tours – Once we’ve taken a look at the community options, we get down to the business of actually touring homes. Here is an overview of this process:
    1. Using our professional judgment and experience and our knowledge of your desires, we make a preliminary selection of homes to show you.
    2. We “pre-screen” the showings as much as possible, using mapping websites and professional experience.
    3. We review the listings with you in advance of setting the appointments and provide any comments we may have regarding our pre-screening.
    4. We limit the number of “homes-per-tour” so as not to overwhelm you with information. Of course, sometimes this is not practical, particularly with transferees that need to see many homes in a short period of time. But in general we find the process is more efficient if we attempt to see no more than six-to-eight properties per outing, as physical – and mental – fatigue is more of a factor than you might believe.
    5. When looking at homes, we point out the things that we consider relevant both positive and negative.
    6. We try to make the process as efficient as possible. We plan the sequence of showings in advance to spend as little time driving as possible. We also try to conserve time by making you understand that it is perfectly fine if you don’t like a home. It’s better to move on quickly once you’ve decided you don’t like something than to spend unnecessary time in a home.
    7. When you find one or more homes in which you have a potential interest, we do the research to show you the relative pricing of the home(s) compared to other similar homes that have sold in that subdivision or area recently. We prepare a “Comparative Market Analysis” (CMA) that includes detailed quantitative data, in addition to copies of the listings that appear on the CMA. This gives you the most relevant information possible to help ascertain the price you should offer once you make the decision to make an offer.
    8. Continuing the prior point, we also obtain copies of the applicable “disclosure statements” for the properties in which you have a potential interest (see Understanding Real Estate Disclosures)
    9. We continue the process until you find a home that you want to purchase. Once you’ve made that decision, we typically advise you to schedule a second viewing of the home before you make a final decision. Experience has shown us that people often have different opinions the second time they see a home. Sometimes these second opinions are more positive, and sometimes they are not. We’d rather you be entirely confident about your decision before we act.

That’s the home search process!

And once you’ve found that house or condo you want to make your home, we move into the really exciting part of the process: making an offer!

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