We've got a new Arizona residential purchase contract coming out today! If you are planning on buying or selling a home in Arizona in the next few years here's the few big changes you need to know about.
1. Earnest money is now due at time of contract acceptance (or next business day if title company is already closed.) This was previously loosely defined. It was also added into the contract that all funds must be in US currency.
2. The new contract better defines that all existing fixtures will convey with the property. A fixture is "fixed" to the premises. Write vanity mirrors into the contract because they are technically fixed to the bathroom wall.
3. Biggest Change: NO MORE SELLER WARRANTIES! Homes will now be sold in the present physical condition. This means the home will convey in the same manner in which it was initially seen. Buyers can still ask for repairs to be taken care of but sellers no longer have to repair warranted items.
4. The new contract removes the appraisal contingency for a cash buyer. They also added that the second appraisal (if necessary) must be paid for by the buyers.
5. Clearly defining FIRPTA and does it apply to you? If you are a foreign citizen FIRPTA may apply to you based on sales price and buyers intention (primary residence vs. non) with the property.
6. Sellers must disclosed within 3 days and on the sellers disclosure the leased items in the home. This could include: pool equipment, water softeners, and RO systems. The Arizona Association of Realtors is working on a separate form for solar equipment.
7. The need for flood hazard insurance must be determined during the due diligence period. Check if the house your buying is within a flood zone here.
8. Lastly, the as-is addendum will be going away. Homes will no longer be sold "as-is" and will be sold in their present physically condition.
In a highly saturated industry, picking you real estate professional can be a tough job. With so many great options you want to make sure you're picking an agent that best fits your needs. Below are my top questions to ask your realtor before you sign the listing agreement.
1. How long have you been selling real estate?
This is not everything but can show you have much experience they have in the industry. Real estate is a very on the job learning environment.
2. Is this an area you are familiar with and work frequently?
Your realtor should be a specialist in the area that you live. They should know the restaurants, parks, shopping centers as well as your communities unique features.
3. What is your average variation between list and sales price?
This is an indication of their pricing and negotiation skills.
4. Can you recommend me service providers such as a roofing company or a painter?
Your realtor should have a team of trusted professionals that they can recommend to you.
5. Is selling real estate your full time job?
Make sure their number 1 priority is getting your home sold.
6. How often do we communicate?
Communication, communication, communication. The answer should be a lot. Many real estate deals are killed because simple things weren't communicated to all parties involved.
7. Can you show me your references?
Hearing what previous clients have to say is a good indication of what it would be like to work with them. Check places like Zillow out beforehand to see client reviews!
8. How do your fees work?
Realtors typically charge a fee based on the percentage of the homes sale price. This fee is then split with the buyers agent.
9. What special marketing strategies do you use to sell my home?
Make sure your real estate agent is doing more than just putting a sign in your front yard. Look for unique marketing strategies.
10. Do you work with a team?
While working in teams is great, make sure you aren't going to be passed off to a transaction coordinator and then a closing coordinator as soon as you go under contract.
What are some questions you ask when hiring a real estate agent?
Have you checked out the newest hot spot in Gilbert yet? Barnone, in Gilbert's Agrotopia, is a repurposed barn that houses 12 small business' including a pizza joint, wood maker, hair salon, and a brewery. It was modeled after Melrose Market in Seattle as is a place for the valley's craftsmen. Barnone is a center for culture, art, and amazing food with a local vibe.
Homebuyers are constantly seeking up and coming places that offer unique experiences near their homes. Barnone provides just that. The ability to grab your favorite beer from 12 West Brewing Co. and eat it with pizza from Fire and Brimstone all under one roof. An urban feel while still being in modern suburbia.
Check out Barone at 3000 E Ray Rd in Agrotopia today!
Most everyone understands that buying a home means saving up for your downpayment and that you’ll owe the bank monthly payments for the next few decades of your life. What isn't talked is the other fees that are associated with buying a home once the sellers have accepted your offer.
You’ve signed the contract.. Now what? Let’s talk where all the money goes..
Downpayment. This is the large up front sum of money you will be paying to the bank to secure the home. It can be as low as 3.5% of the purchase price and shows your lender that you have some skin in the game. There are many programs out there right now that offer assistance programs with your downpayment, especially for first time home buyers.
Earnest money. This is your “good faith money” put into an escrow company as soon as your contract is accepted. Earnest money shows the seller you are serious about buying their home and ready to start your inspection period. A good rule of thumb is approximately 1% of the purchase price. This is credited towards your downpayment at close of escrow.
Escrow and title fees. A title company is a third party company who helps facilitate a real estate transaction. Their tasks include title searches (to make sure there are no liens, clouds, or encumbrances against the property), allocating funds to the correct parties and preparing all documents for transfer of the home. Their fees are based on the purchase price of your new home.
Lender fees. These vary based on the amount of your loan and can include things such as your appraisal and loan origination fee. Your lender can offer you a credit to help offset some upfront cost but this usually comes with a higher interest rate on your mortgage.
Monthly mortgage payments. This will be your monthly payment to the bank who holds your loan. Your mortgage payment includes your principal (loan amount), interest on your loan, property taxes and homeowners insurance.
Ask your trusted lender about assistance programs that help to cover fees such as downpayment and closing costs. Is 2017 your year to be financially ready to buy a home?