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Old 05-16-2019, 08:20 AM
 
Location: Chicagoland
1,778 posts, read 1,621,610 times
Reputation: 1599

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OP here, see below.
Quote:
Originally Posted by carlaagnini View Post
Wow, this info is so helpful to me. So sorry to hear about so many difficult situations. Maybe some of this advice will help.
1. Try to narrow down the neighborhoods you like. If nothing is for sale ask your agent to send out a mailer describing your needs. This often entices someone who is on the fence but doesn’t want to list or pay double commission. After 6 visits, we have 5-6 preferred neighborhoods, but there may be smaller neighborhoods that would work. Our realtor says she's asked for 'advance or pocket listings' but nothing has ever come of it.
2. I most certainly will discuss information about schools and tell you where to find the specifics that you are looking for if I can’t give that - the same with neighborhoods...especially if your in my specialized areas. My knowledge is what I get paid for. Our realtor has repeatedly refused to say anything about neighborhoods other than "I don't see y'all in that neighborhood." I'm told it all stems from Fair Housing Laws - but it strikes me as odd that a realtor who should know more about neighborhoods than others can't say anything, while private citizens can and do say whatever they want in violation of the FH laws...
3. Our Charlotte MLS feeds directly to Realtor.com and even though I hate to send someone there because the listed agents are not always the agent representing the house, but agents that are paying for leads, it does have the most accurate info.
4. Your agent should be willing to preview homes before she shows them to you if many of them have been a waste of time. We've been with her for 3 months and she has not previewed any homes.
5. Always ask if there is a walk through video or if your agent would do a FaceTime video to save you some aggravation. She offered to FaceTime video for us, but we know we have to view a home immediately if we hope to make an offer so we haven't take her up on it.
6. Use this website and next door to ask questions about the neighborhoods you like. I have, and I've gotten some feedback but not a lot.
7. Ask your lender if they have “TBD” to be determined loans. This is a loan type that goes through underwriting before you even find a home. Basically loan approval insert house. In a competitive market this makes a huge difference on who gets the home. We don't need a loan. We hoped being a cash buyer would help but not sure it's made any difference so far?
8. Consider the due diligence that you are offering or some of the other terms, price isn’t always the closer. Our realtor has done comps and suggested offer prices, but she's just taken what I proposed for terms, I'd welcome her input on how to improve our offer. Next time I think I will ask her for suggestions before making an offer.
9. Renting isn’t a bad option, although prices are high there too. If we haven't bought a house by Sept, we will probably rent or lease.
10. Stay positive and make sure your agent is too! They right house does come around every time! After 3 months unsuccessful it's harder to believe that. I'm sure the perfect house will come but we may have given up by then.
In full disclosure, we did find the near perfect house but we blew it in the offer stage and lost out to another offer - subject of another thread that I don't want to repeat. I suspect our realtor is understandably disillusioned with us after that recent self inflicted mistake. We'll find out when/if the next interesting listing appears.
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Old 05-17-2019, 08:44 PM
 
Location: Indian Trail, NC
921 posts, read 1,850,076 times
Reputation: 373
I'd just like to make a comment about #2 on this list. I am a Realtor. We are not allowed to give advice or opinions on schools or neighborhoods. It is a violation and we can either have our licensed suspended or revoked per the North Carolina Real Estate Commission. Knowledge of an area as far as where it is compared to grocery, shopping etc. is one thing, but giving opinions or saying it's a good area or bad area is an absoute no. We are to give our clients websites so they can come to their own conclusions about an area.

https://realestate.usnews.com/real-e...-cant-tell-you
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Old 05-23-2019, 05:46 PM
 
333 posts, read 132,573 times
Reputation: 1241
OP said: she (realtor) just said 'there really are no bad neighborhoods in this area.' May be true, but they can't all be equal, so we've been left to drive through every neighborhood we can making our own judgements - which may be misguided.

Hi OP
We are moving to Charlotte area to be near family and like you are looking from a distance trying to figure it out. We've gotten some general advice from family but they bought an HOA home and we will never live in an HOA ever again (even though their home is really nice).

Here's a tip I found on my own by looking at both Redfin and Realtor websites to help learn how "safe" a neighborhood is. Realtor dot com will show you a Crime overlay map for a specific neighborhood but only after you have selected a listing to view in the "map" view. This is about the only bonus that Realtor site has over Redfin for me. If you are looking at school ratings (I'm not) they have that also.

The "crime" shaded overlay is not completely accurate for a particular house, it's a little more general but you'll clearly see which neighborhoods are safer than others. Homes farther out from center city have lower crime. I don't know why realtors can't discuss crime and safety, that is not prejudicial against anyone except criminals.

I also spend a lot of time, if I like a certain property, looking at a satellite image. Found some railroad tracks too close to one nice new home and was sad. Found a gravel pit a mile away from another nice one. Realtors will not point these things out especially if they are not visible at street level in my experience. It's "buyer beware" and do your own research.

As far as prices going up (another poster's remarks) we've been in that situation before. People who've been in the area a long time, including realtors, don't have an outsiders perspective. We've made good profits buying homes (and selling years later) that realtors thought we paid too much for.
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Old 05-24-2019, 05:44 AM
 
Location: Chicagoland
1,778 posts, read 1,621,610 times
Reputation: 1599
^^ Thanks. Iíll take a look at realtor.com, itís the only one we havenít looked at - weíve been looking at MLS, Redfin and occasionally Zillow.

I agree looking at satellite views is very useful. Weíve eliminated several homes that were right next to high voltage power lines and a couple that backup up to businesses or apartments.

Our search continues.
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Old 05-25-2019, 11:09 PM
 
137 posts, read 209,047 times
Reputation: 240
Two months is not a long time.

Agree with recommendation to risk making an offer prior to flying out. You are a cash buyer so I assume you can afford to lose deposit if you don't like house. We did that when we moved to Charlotte from CA 7 years ago; wouldn't have gotten our house otherwise.

Good luck!
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Old 05-25-2019, 11:11 PM
 
Location: Chicagoland
1,778 posts, read 1,621,610 times
Reputation: 1599
We went under contact yesterday, so the “torture” may be over if inspections, etc. come out OK. Hope so, it’s been an intense 10 months capped off with over 3 months of house hunting.
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Old 05-26-2019, 10:55 AM
 
310 posts, read 169,305 times
Reputation: 659
Quote:
Originally Posted by thebalogas View Post
I'd just like to make a comment about #2 on this list. I am a Realtor. We are not allowed to give advice or opinions on schools or neighborhoods. It is a violation and we can either have our licensed suspended or revoked per the North Carolina Real Estate Commission. Knowledge of an area as far as where it is compared to grocery, shopping etc. is one thing, but giving opinions or saying it's a good area or bad area is an absoute no. We are to give our clients websites so they can come to their own conclusions about an area.

https://realestate.usnews.com/real-e...-cant-tell-you
Comments From Agent: “That’s a pretty high-crime neighborhood.”

Class Violation: Race

I feel like an agent not describing a high-crime neighborhood as such for fear they'll be violating the Fair Housing Act for race is ironically violating the Fair Housing Act for race by making this association.
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Old 05-26-2019, 11:28 AM
 
149 posts, read 32,599 times
Reputation: 214
If you are not from Charlotte you must be sure you are picking "the right" neighborhood from information can learn on your own.. You should go to the house around 1100 pm on a Friday or Saturday night and actually park your car and walk 360 degrees for a block around the house. Friend you wont need to hear the real-estate salesman say another word for you to know FOR SURE if you want the address for your house....I wonder why we never ever see any real estate suggest this idea?
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Old 05-28-2019, 10:55 AM
 
Location: Mooresville, NC
191 posts, read 315,721 times
Reputation: 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by thebalogas View Post
I'd just like to make a comment about #2 on this list. I am a Realtor. We are not allowed to give advice or opinions on schools or neighborhoods. It is a violation and we can either have our licensed suspended or revoked per the North Carolina Real Estate Commission. Knowledge of an area as far as where it is compared to grocery, shopping etc. is one thing, but giving opinions or saying it's a good area or bad area is an absoute no. We are to give our clients websites so they can come to their own conclusions about an area.

https://realestate.usnews.com/real-e...-cant-tell-you
Iím sure you canít simply say this school is bad or good; but if my children went to a specific school, I can talk about my experience as a parent. If I specialize in a certain area, thereís a good chance I know other parents who have children that attend school there to put them in touch with or the PTO board personnel. I set up appointments and make it my business to know who the special education director is, and who they need to speak with. I offer to set up tours and tell my clients what some important factors are when considering different schools such as calendars, number of kids in a classroom, the PTO budget and what it is used for. All of this is useful information and allowed to be given. When we shut our clients down by simply saying, I canít talk about schools, we arenít giving a completely accurate picture. It is a fine line, but we can do a better job assisting our clients with allowable school information. As Realtors, sometimes we take this out of context.
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