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House Hunter’s Hints: Hire a Real Estate Agent

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Hiring a Real Estate AgentPlanning to move to another location or another house? It’s best to do it well ahead of time.

Here are some steps you should take to make sure your move goes as planned.

Allow time to sell your current house

Unless you have the money to buy a new house without having to sell the current one, you’ll need some time to put your house on the market. It may be tempting to try to sell your house on your own — nothing wrong with that — but it’s still best to use a real estate agent. For one reason, they have the contacts to make the sale happen faster; for another, they know all the ins and outs of selling property.

To sell your house faster, enlist the help of a real estate agent. If you don’t have one yet, use the Web to find one. Some real estate websites are pretty straight to the point, with text like “we buy houses in St. Louis” in bold print on their home page. Make a short list of agents you would like to try and go with the one you are most comfortable with: Pro tip: meet the agent in person before doing business with them.

Allow time to find a new house

With the same agent, you might be able to find the new house you want. Although real estate agents usually operate locally, they have contacts everywhere. This means they can hook you up with a colleague they trust in the area where you’d like to try looking. They can also do the legwork for you, just like they would when selling your property.

Of course, this takes time, perhaps more time than it takes to sell your old house. You should have a budget range so you won’t make an offer that you can’t afford. Look at several houses before choosing one. List your preferred places, as well, so you know where to visit first. Use the Internet for a preliminary check on available houses.

Buying a house is a big deal; it’s a serious purchase, perhaps the most serious one you’ll ever make. Do your homework and avoid buying a house you’ll regret.

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