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Why do real estate professionals ask all those questions?

After all, you only want to buy a home.   Most of us are not too keen on sharing the really personal parts of our lives, unless it's with our closest loved ones.  So, when someone begins asking how much money you have we tend to get a little uncomfortable.

Rest assured, your Realtor is not trying to probe where it isn't necessary.  But, when you are looking to buy a new home, this is the person you have charged with assisting you to find the best possible choice and at a price that is within your budget.  Certain personal information is necessary in order to carry out the task.  Honest answers from you will go a long way toward making your home ownership dreams come true.

If you're selling your home, it calls for a considerable amount of hard work and skill.  You need a plan and someone to help guide you through the right financial transactions.  You'll need someone who is familiar with your neighborhood, its homes and services.  Again, sharing pertinent information makes it all go smoother.

There is a lot more to being a good real estate person than a nice smile and the ability to place the property on the Multiple Listing Service.  It is to your advantage to work with your agent and listen to suggestions.  Everyone wants to do their job well and an open, honest relationship is a win-win for you and your Realtor.

Rent vs Buy

Buy or Rent?  That is the dilemma facing many potential homeowners today.  It seems that buying a home is more costly - and time demanding than renting a home.  However, if you can comfortably afford to do so, and you have plans to stay at your location for a while, buying a home has significant advantages.
Financially owning a home is often promoted as a better choice than renting.  Currently there are significant
federal and state tax breaks:homeowners can claim deductions for real estate property taxes and interest paid on
their mortgage each year.  In addition, long-term homeowners build equity both by paying down their mortgage and when their home appreciates in value.  Many savvy homebuyers increase their equity more quickly by buying homes that need cosmetic improvements (such as decorating) rather than structural renovation (walls need moving).  These minor improvements can significantly increase the value of a home over a relatively short period of time with a modest investment.
However, there are times when renting a home is the more sound choice to make.  For example, if you are only going to be at your place for a couple of years, it makes no sense to buy the home, as this would be the more expensive endeavor.  If you buy or sell in a short period of time, you may actually lose equity.
Also, renting makes good sense if you've identified the general area in which you want to live but haven't made a final decision as to the specific neighborhood.  If you don't know whether you'll feel comfortable in a particular neighborhood, it may be better to rent a house or an apartment there for 6 months or a year, to get more comfortable with it.

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