ABR, the Accredited Buyer Representative designation, conferred by the Real Estate Buyer's Agent Council® (REBAC), confirms an agent's mastery of buyer representation. Agents who have earned the ABR designation have demonstrated experience in buyer representation by completing and closing a minimum of five real estate transactions in which they functioned as a buyer's representative. Two key areas emphasized in ABR training are how to identify potential problems with a property and how to negotiate the best price on behalf of the buyer. REBAC is an affiliate of the National Association of Realtors®.
Less than 5 percent of all Realtors hold the CRS designation.
The Certified Residential Specialist designation, conferred by the Council of Residential Specialists®, recognizes real estate agents for proven experience in marketing residential property. To earn the designation, agents must complete a program of advanced study covering areas such as investment real estate and real estate-related taxes. The Council of Residential Specialists is an affiliate of the National Association of Realtors. It is awarded only to those who complete strict educational requirements, combined with experience and sales results.
The GRI® (Graduate, Realtor Institute) designation is obtained by attending a specific, intensive series of a minimum of 90 hours of classroom instruction, covering subjects in contract law, professional standards, sales and marketing, finance, and risk reduction. The subject matter has been chosen to educate practitioners about local, state and national real estate practices that affect them, their clients and customers. GRI courses are taught by leading real estate professionals from around the country.
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Reasons To Get A Home Loan Before You Start Shopping For A Home
You do NOT have to have a home under contract to obtain a home loan. The lender is looking at your credit history and income when considering a loan application.
Some potential home buyers think they will have no problem qualifying for a loan only to be disappointed when they find out they don't. Others may afraid they won't qualify so they don't apply. We often see people who don't think they qualify for a home loan but don't know that many lenders offer loan programs for all types of borrowers.
Avoid disappointment resulting from looking at homes that are out of your price range. Looking at homes in a price range you can afford will keep you from being disappointed if you fall in love with a home only to find out that it is beyond your financial abilities.
Insure that you will meet your moving dead line. Knowing you must move by a certain date and still working on proving you are qualified for a loan can be a stressful experience. The two most common problems are resolving credit issues and proving you have the cash for your down payment and closing costs.
Applying for a loan as soon as possible will insure that any incorrect information in your credit history can be corrected before the closing date. It often takes 60 days or more to have information corrected in your credit files.
Having a Loan Commitment in your hand is like being a cash buyer. Every seller wants to work with cash buyers. It gives you leverage when presenting an offer and negotiating a counter offer. It will insure that the closing process goes smoothly when you do find your new home. Do not mistake a Loan Commitment with a pre-approval or pre-qualification, a pre-approval does not carry much weight with a seller since a pre-approval is only a cursory look at your credit history.
Applying for a home loan online can be a real convenience. You can apply for a mortgage online 24 hours a day 7 days a week. You can apply from your home, office, local library or any location that offers Internet access. No need to take time off work or away from play. Avoids feeling pressured by sitting in a lenders office and allows you ample time to collect all the necessary information.
Be sure you check the rates and fees for several lenders before you decide which one to use. Compare the lender fees, not just the interest rate. Ask each lender to provide you with a "Good Faith Estimate" of closing costs and carefully review it. If you see a fee you don't understand ask the lender to provide a clear explanation of the item. Then ask your real estate Agent to review the Good Faith Estimate. Being more familiar with the forms the Agent can spot any hidden "junk" fees.