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Excellence in Real Estate

Select your agent to maximize your exposure.

When selling your home, you should select a real estate agent who can expose your property to the biggest market to ensure the fastest sale at the best possible price. Ask your prospective agents about the different ways they plan to advertise your home. Good agents should use the MLS, national and local promotion on the Internet, yard and neighborhood signs, as well as ads in various newspapers and real estate publications.

Don't buy your new home until you have sold your current home.

This is generally sound advice unless you live in an extremely hot market and your Realtor is sure you'll be able to sell your home quickly. Timing is crucial, so start working with your agent to find a new home as soon as yours is listed. With a little bit of luck, the day you accept an offer on your home, you'll be able to make an offer on a new home and close both deals on the same day. At worst, you may have to live in a rental for a couple of months, but most people agree that moving twice is preferable to being stuck with two mortgage payments!

Always get an inspection.

Any purchase offer you make should be contingent upon your approval of a qualified home inspector's report, even when buying a new or almost new home. Friends, family, or your Realtor may be able to refer you to a good inspector, or you can contact the Better Business Bureau for a list. Even if your lender does not require it, you may want to consider conducting a full land survey--property line disputes could potentially cost you thousands down the road, and are typically not covered by title insurance.