Frequently Asked Questions from buyers with VISION!
Do I have to pay a realtor to help me buy a property?
Commissions to realtors are usually paid by the seller/selling broker. So generally the services offered to buyers by an agent are at no cost to the buyer. There can be exceptions to this rule in rare cases so check with your agent to verify.
Do I need to get a home inspection?
Home inspections are rarely “required”. However, we highly advise that you get one on any property you are buying. The information obtained can be invaluable in helping you to make the best decision possible on a property. Not getting a home inspection could end up costing you thousands in unknown repairs. Although home inspections cannot always find every problem or potential problem they can definitely be a helpful tool.
What is an earnest deposit?
Earnest deposits are a monetary sum a buyer provides a seller through escrow that shows commitment to a home. Earnest deposits are applied to the buyer’s closing costs or down payment at the time of closing. If the buyer breaches the sales contract they risk losing their earnest deposit.
How much earnest should I put in my offer?
This is up to the buyer and should be discussed with the buyer’s agent when making an offer. Earnest money can be a great negotiating tool, especially on highly sought after properties. The amount you choose to put on the offer may vary based on the property or specific circumstances.
Where does the earnest deposit go?
The escrow company will hold the earnest deposit and apply it to the closing. If there is a breach by any party they will disburse the funds to the appropriate party once they have reviewed the contract to determine who is in breach.
How long will it take to close?
This is determined during the offer negotiation process. Cash closings with no HOA or tax issues can close in just a few days. Properties with several liens, taxes, violations or other issues can take several months. Generally speaking though most closings take place in 3-5 weeks. This allows title and escrow do the necessary things to successfully close the sale and convey title. There may be items that affect the timeframe even after a date is agreed upon and in those cases a new closing date should be negotiated between the buyer and seller.
What if the home I like needs a lot of repairs?
If the home inspection or walkthrough reveal a plethora of repairs there are several things you can do and you will want to evaluate those options with your agent. Here are a couple of points to discuss, but note these are certainly not all of the options. 1) You can cancel if you are within your allotted inspection times, or 2) you can ask for some or all of the repairs, or 3) you can proceed as-is. Additionally, you could check with your lender to see what type of loan you can get that would pay for improvements. Loans like this are very popular and if you are buying the home “right” this can be a great option. Do not immediately freak out when a home needs repairs, take a moment and asses the big picture to ensure you make the decision that is best for you and your future.
Do I need a loan approval prior to making an offer?
You do not need a loan approval to make an offer. A loan approval can be a very good way to make a seller accept your offer over other offers that only have a pre-qualification. Taking this extra step could be very beneficial.
Do I need a loan pre-qualification before making an offer?
A prequalification is something you should have with every offer when you plan to finance. It may not be required, but sellers may not want to accept your offer until they understand your ability to get a loan. This process can be done in a brief phone call so you should take the time to get the prequalification completed. This is a preliminary to approval process. Go to the mortgage center link at the top of the homepage for information on the prequalification process.
How long is an inspection period?
Inspection periods can vary depending on the type of property being purchased and inspection periods are also negotiable with each transaction. Many buyers use inspection timeframes to negotiate with to make their offer look more attractive. A standard home in Arizona has a 10 day inspection period, while land and commercial timeframes are different. Verify the inspection period appropriate for your transaction with your realtor.
What is an insurance claims history report?
This is a report that a seller provides that will identify any insurance claims filed in the past 5 years on the property you are buying.
What are SPDS (disclosures)?
This is a detailed Sellers Property Disclosure Statement. The seller will complete this document and provide the buyer with a copy to review during their inspection period. This is signed by the seller and deemed accurate to the best of the sellers knowledge. This is a very helpful tool in assisting a buyer through the inspection process.
Do sellers have to make repairs if I request them?
No. Sellers are not required to make repairs simply because a buyer asks them to do so. If a seller chooses not to do repairs than the buyer can either cancel or move forward with the transaction. Typically sellers are willing to do reasonable repairs that are not too costly. Many times the market we are in can affect their willingness to complete repairs as well. Repairs are usually negotiated during the inspection period.
What is an REO?
An REO is a bank owned property usually obtained through foreclosure or some other legal action. These properties can be great deals but are often sold as-is.
Does Visionary assist buyers with HUD homes?
Absolutely! Just contact one of our team members and they will guide you through the process.
Can I go inside a listing without the realtor?
No. Generally a realtor must use an “electronic” key to access the property. This identifies the agent and protects the home owner. The exception would be if there is an open house being held, however you may still want your realtor with you just in case you like it!
Who should I call if I see a sign on a home and want to see the inside?
Call your realtor here at Visionary Properties! We can access any listing and will make ourselves available to ensure you get inside as quickly as possible.
What items should I consider when having my agent write an offer?
You will want to sit down and go through all aspects of an offer with your realtor before sending it to ensure it stands out. You will want to consider some of the following items, loan type, earnest deposit, closing date, inspection period, repairs, title, escrow and more. Remember each property may require its own unique offer.
Does the type of loan affect my offer?
It can make a difference. Let your realtor know what your lender has prequalified you for and work within those parameters. An example would be if a home is in need of repairs a seller might look for a cash buyer or a buyer doing a “rehab” loan as the seller may not be willing to do repairs. Having several loan choices may open up a few more opportunities to you as a buyer.
Are there programs available if I am a first time buyer?
There are sometimes special programs available. You will want to visit the Mortgage Center link on our website to get information on if and what current programs may exist.
What are down payment assistance and/or grant programs?
It is very typical for city, state, federal government or other entities to offer programs to assist buyers with down payments or some other variety of buyer assistance. These are great programs and we highly recommend researching them to see if they make sense for your personal situation. We recommend going to our mortgage center link on this website for more details and information.
Can I buy with no money down?
There are several no money down programs including USDA and VA loans. You may also want to visit our mortgage center link on this site to see if there are any grant or down payment assistance programs available at this time and if they pertain to your personal home buying situation.
Can I buy if I have had a short sale or a foreclosure?
We are not lenders ourselves so we recommend you contact your lender or visit our mortgage center link on this site for more information on loan qualifications. Generally, there are timeframes and conditions set by lenders as to how soon after a foreclosure or short-sale you can finance again. There may be extenuating issues that can speed up the process so we always recommend you speak to a lending professional as you never know until you ask, plus it seems the rules change too often to keep up!
Can I use a co-signer to buy a home?
Check with your lender or visit our mortgage center link on this site.
How much will my payment be?
We offer a mortgage calculator under the mortgage center link at the top of the homepage. This can provide an estimate of your payment. For more detailed data you should speak to your lender.
What is an HOA?
An HOA is short for home owners association. They are an association that governs a subdivision/community to ensure compliance with rules and regulations for that area. The homeowners within the HOA will pay a fee to them for enforcing the rules and maintaining the community. Ask your agent if the neighborhood you are buying in has an HOA and make sure you are comfortable with their rules and regulations. HOA’s in general are there to protect home owners and home values and are good for the community.
Can I view the MLS myself?
Yes! We provide a link right here on our site! Go to the top of the homepage and click on the property search link and you will have a direct MLS feed.
Is your company really named Visionary Properties because one of the owners is blind?
Yes. Jason Rodgers is blind and he and co-founder William Doyle named it Visionary Properties and developed the tagline “The Realtor’s With VISION” to reinforce that a lack of sight certainly does not mean a lack of vision! They believe that we should not allow life’s little obstacles to affect who we are and what we accomplish.
What if there is a septic tank?
Septic tanks are very common and can be a savings over sewer costs. Generally septic tanks are on larger lots and rural areas, however they can be anywhere potentially. When you buy a home with a septic tank the seller must certify the tank. Do not let the fact that a septic tank is present affect your desire to purchase, just make sure it is inspected and certified.
What is a carry-back?
A carryback is a owner of a property doing financing for a buyer rather than a typical bank loan. This can be a good deal for all parties. Oftentimes the buyer needs this because they cannot qualify for traditional financing and a seller may like the additional interest and their money over a period of time. Talk to your agent about this option.
Can my agent set me up on a search to receive only properties that meet my general specifications?
Absolutely! Just ask your Visionary Properties agent and they will get this done right away.
How do I know what the investment home I buy may rent for?
Your realtor will be happy to provide you with rental comparables. This is an easy thing to do and an important step in your process. Our sister company Visionary Properties Property Management (480-275-2821) can be reached if you are looking for someone to manage your investment after you close.
Does Visionary sell commercial property?
Yes. Your agent is here to assist you with whatever you need.
What is a second home?
A home that is not your primary residence nor an investment/income property. Typically a vacation or part-time dwelling. Lenders and title companies are generally the ones that will want to know how you plan to occupy the home.
Can I get a loan if I am from Canada?
Of course! Not all lenders do loans for foreign nationals so you may need to do some research. Although you will have to do some due diligence there are definitely options available. You can visit our mortgage center link for more information.
Can I own more than one investment property?
Absolutely! There is not a limit on how many homes you can own. There may be a limit on how many loans and/or loan amounts you can have, so check with your lender if you are wanting multiple investor loans or need questions answered.
Do you have a recommendation for a company to manage my investment properties?
We have a sister company that managers rental properties. They are full service and make owning an investment home really easy! You can go to their website visionarypropertiespm.com or call them @ 480-275-2821 for details.
Can you help me buy land or a lot to build a home on?
Yes! We are great at lot and land sales. This is different than home sales so you need to contact your realtor with VISION here at Visionary Properties! You can feel confident in our team when it comes to real estate and that includes land and lots.
Where is your office located?
We are located at 633 E. Ray Rd. 118 Gilbert AZ 85296. We are just West of Lindsay on Ray Rd. Building number 4 in LinRay executive plaza. Our phone number is 480-248-9395.
What if taxes are past due on a home I want to buy?
Taxes are paid typically by the seller at closing. They generally need to be current to close and to convey title.
What type of resources do you have to help me find the perfect home?
We have a plethora of resources available! We utilize the latest search databases, investor portfolios, REO lists, RELO databases, HUD, MLS, FSBOs and more! We pride ourselves in finding the home you want. We understand technology and utilize it to open doors that our competitors may have missed. We will do whatever it takes to find that perfect home so give us a call today.
If I do not qualify to buy at this time will you help me find a rental home?
You Bet! We want to assist you in any way we can. Finding you a rental hoe is something we are happy to do for you and when you are in a position to qualify we will find you one to purchase too! We want to be your realtor’s for life.
What is a short sale and should I consider buying one?
A short-sale is basically an agreement between the seller and their bank to sell the home short of the amount owed. You can Google short-sales for a more detailed explanation. Short-sales can be good deals for a buyer. The process is a bit longer and oftentimes frustrating, but can be worth it! Do not miss a good opportunity because it is listed as a short sale.
What if I need closing costs? Can I ask the seller to pay them?
You can ask and negotiate with the seller. This is a common request and seller’s will often consider this if it benefits them. This is a great way to minimize your costs and have less out of pocket expenses. Speak to your lender to find out if this is something you need to do and how much you may need.
Do I get to pick the title company?
Buyers can pick the company they want to buy title insurance with. Keep in mind that everything is negotiable and that escrow is different than title so do not confuse those two items.