Specialized Buyers Agent Answers Real Estate Questions

Q. I am confused by the term “Good Faith Estimate”. What is that and can I rely on it? T. Bradley, Paoli, PA.

A. What is that expression about being from the government and here to help you? This particular form has been around a long time and causes me more headaches than any other form in the home buying process. It is supposed to be what a lender gives to a potential borrower to spell out all the costs of the loan, and many borrowers rely on it in selecting the lowest cost money, but until recently, there was no requirement that the lender then actually charge those amounts. Hence the name “Estimate”.

When the trouble in loan land hit recently, many borrowers who thought they knew the terms of their loans were hit with revisions and changes. Under a newly-revised format for these Estimates, lenders will not be able to vary by more than 10% from the estimated costs and will also have to split them out in more detail to prevent overcharging. In our area, loan costs are about $1,000 to $2000 but in NYC, for example, they can run up to 2.5% of the loan.

Another form that is supposed to help home-buying consumers is the state Consumer Notice, also recently revised. This is to be given to anyone by an agent at the time they discuss possible representation to explain agency options. Many people think it is a contract or do not understand all the types of agency that can exist. They are not aware, for example, that an agent may legally represent both the buyer and the seller at the same time. No matter how many revisions that form gets, it is still destined to be confusing, in my opinion.

You should always ask to have documentation explained so that you feel you really understand it. Buying a home is a monumental investment with a lot of complicated parts. You deserve to have control over it.

 

 

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I moved to PA from Washington State and learned that realty is local. There were things that I thought I knew about buying a house previously but boy was I wrong. Linda was very patient with me but also did not hold back when she saw potential problems, and always made sure I had all the information I needed before making a decision and didn’t belittle concerns to just get a sale. Above all else, and this was the most important thing to me, Linda has a high ethical standard, is very transparent in her approach and is someone I trusted making one of the biggest decisions of my life. – A. Lindsay (Courtesy of Google)

 

Hear From Our Clients

  • "We were so pleased that a co-worker recommended someone in the area that she trusted. Boy, did we strike gold on all counts. You are amazing!"
  • "Instead of trying to take advantage of conflicts of interest, she puts the client's interests first."
  • "Linda is a hardworking, proactive and knowledgeable realtor. Throughout the process of finding and buying our new home, she was always responsive and kept us up to date on every detail."
  • "Linda and the group at Sage are the right fit. You won’t find more knowledgeable, prepared and professional agents."
  • "Linda and Tracey really know the Main Line area."
  • "Throughout the entire process we never doubted that she always had our best interests in mind. We wouldn’t consider anyone else when buying a home on the Main Line."
  • "From start to finish, Linda brought to bear a most helpful combination of experience, knowledge, attention and integrity on a somewhat complicated transaction. There was never any doubt that she represented our interests."
  • "Her knowledge of the area helped us quickly narrow our search and ultimately scored us an amazing home in an incredible neighborhood."
  • "It is hard to trust when you are not sure of the rules of the game. Working with Linda made us feel like we were family. Linda took her time to relay and explain everything in detail."
  • "Linda’s honesty and real estate savviness made for a wonderful home buying experience!"

Read more about what our clients have to say

Hear from our Clients

  • "We were so pleased that a co-worker recommended someone in the area that she trusted. Boy, did we strike gold on all counts. You are amazing!"
  • "Instead of trying to take advantage of conflicts of interest, she puts the client's interests first."
  • "Linda is a hardworking, proactive and knowledgeable realtor. Throughout the process of finding and buying our new home, she was always responsive and kept us up to date on every detail."
  • "Linda and the group at Sage are the right fit. You won’t find more knowledgeable, prepared and professional agents."
  • "Linda and Tracey really know the Main Line area."
  • "Throughout the entire process we never doubted that she always had our best interests in mind. We wouldn’t consider anyone else when buying a home on the Main Line."
  • "From start to finish, Linda brought to bear a most helpful combination of experience, knowledge, attention and integrity on a somewhat complicated transaction. There was never any doubt that she represented our interests."
  • "Her knowledge of the area helped us quickly narrow our search and ultimately scored us an amazing home in an incredible neighborhood."
  • "It is hard to trust when you are not sure of the rules of the game. Working with Linda made us feel like we were family. Linda took her time to relay and explain everything in detail."
  • "Linda’s honesty and real estate savviness made for a wonderful home buying experience!"

Read more about what our clients have to say

Sage Buyer Tips

Use Sage Buyer Tips to research the Main Line and stay up to date on real estate news. This online destination is chock full of resources for buyers and sellers: you can see our Main Line communities or explore Sage favorite places. Browse properties here and search other Main Line real estate. With Sage’s advice and experience, first-time buyers and those looking to upgrade can find homes best suited to their needs.