Inspectors & Service Providers Make a Difference to First Time Homebuyers
As a first time home buyer, in particular, you might not have a clue where to start when choosing service providers. Your Realtor is happy to provide you with contact information for various services. Often, a recommendation comes along with the name of a person the agent has worked with before and trusts. Keep in mind that North Carolina law prohibits kickbacks and such for any referrals a real estate agent make for professional services, so you should feel comfortable with their recommendations. However, some real estate firms do not like their agents to make recommendations for the various services you will need, as they have been sued when the agent is negligent in recommending a “less than wonderful” person. Our team feels that is unfortunate, as it leaves first time homebuyers to fend for themselves in a field where they have no experience. So, we recommend the best people we know to help our first time homebuyers.
Of course, you are free to choose any service provider you like. You will need a wide range of services, starting with a lender to help you get the special first time homebuyer financing. Once you get a contract to buy a home, you will need to select a closing attorney to research that title, get the title insurance, get the loan documents so you can sign them, and record the documents in the official records to complete the sale. In North Carolina, it is customary for the homebuyer to select the closing attorney to close the sale. Before you close the sale, you will need homeowners insurance, so you will need to find an insurance agent.
After signing a contract you will need a home inspector to go through the property in detail to give you a report on any problems. You will also hire a termite inspector to determine if the property has termites, or to certify that the property is free of termites. If the property has a well and septic system, you may need inspectors for those features. If the property has structural issues, you might need a structural engineer. There are all sorts of other issues that may come up, so you may have even more professionals that you need to hire.
Then there are utility services such as gas, electricity, water, trash, telephone, cable TV, and Internet. A first time homebuyer should have all these service accounts established prior to closing, so they are active upon moving. Your Buyers Agent is happy to provide you with contact information for these services as well.
If you move from outside the Triangle, you had a network of stores and professionals to provide everything you needed from doctors to birthday cakes. Feel free to ask about services like local banks, grocery stores, and restaurants too. Part of what we do is to help you reestablish the network you had to provide all the services you need.
There’s always the Yellow Pages and the Internet, but you may prefer a personal recommendation from your Realtor who should have learned what you value in someone who provides a service. You need a lot of help, but with a good guide, you will get through it gracefully.