The most common method to determining the value of a home is by completing a comparative market analysis or CMA. A CMA is an in-depth evaluation of recently sold “comparable” homes in the past 6-12 months. A comparative market analysis, isn’t a crystal ball that determines what a home will sell for, however, if performed by a Realtor, it should greatly narrow the sale price range.
A professionally completed “CMA” will take into account many features of not only a home, but also the local area and neighborhood. Considerations that a professionally completed “CMA” include, but is not limited to:
1. Square footage
2. Number of bedrooms
3. Number of bathrooms
4. Upgrades to kitchen
5. Window quality
6. Roof age
7. Lot features
8. Location; primary or neighborhood street?
9. Style of residence
10. Flooring type
12. Waterfront or water access
YES! There are many reasons why you should talk with a bank and get pre-approved before looking at homes. First and foremost, talking with a bank before looking at homes can help you understand exactly how much you can afford.
If you’re a first time home buyer, talking with a bank before looking at homes is strongly suggested, as there are many first time home buyer programs available. These programs can vary from state to state and county to county, so knowing exactly what’s available to you, is critical.
Another important reason to talk with a bank before looking at homes is so you understand exactly what costs are associated with buying a home. There are many home buyers who don’t understand the difference between a down payment, pre-paid items, and escrows, which can be thoroughly explained by a mortgage professional. A mortgage professional can give you advice on the type of financing available to you.
In most cases the seller pays the Realtor fees. In Florida, it is standard for the listing agent (seller’s agent) to offer 50% of the commission to the buyer’s agent from the total commission that the seller has agreed to. For example, in our area, the standard commission is 6% of the sales price, which is agreed to by the seller at the time of listing the property. When we list the home on the MLS, we offer 3% to any buyer’s agent who brings a qualified buyer that results in a closed sale.