Frequently asked Questions


What is the difference between the Due diligence deposit and the earnest money deposit?

The Due Diligence Deposit (DD) is one of two deposits common in North Carolina residential real estate purchases. It is not mandatory but in the current market with competing offers most sellers expect a Due Diligence Deposit to be included with the offers. It basically pays the seller to take the home of the market while the buyer has inspections done and gets their financing in order. If the buyer terminates for any reason, the seller gets to keep the deposit. Otherwise it is credited towards the purchase to the buyer at closing.

The Earnest Money Deposit (EMD) is an important part of the offer. It tells the seller you’re a committed buyer. They are held in escrow until closing. Assuming that all goes well and these funds will go toward closing but in most circumstances, you can get your deposit back if you back out of the contract before the Due Diligence period is over.

What is my home worth?

Before determining a listing price, sellers should talk to a real estate agent about getting a CMA of their home. Local comps will help gain an understanding of their property's market value based on numerous factors such as age, condition, size and upgrades along with other criteria in similar homes that have recently sold. A trusted real estate agent who can help sellers understand their market and evaluate their home and what is it worth.

is is a good time to sell my home?

Typically the spring and summer months are the best time to put your house on the market but people need to buy homes all year round. The holiday season is usually the slowest time of year as people don’t want the hassle of people looking at their homes and preparing to move during that busy time of year.

Timing can be determined by what is happening in a person's life. If they need to buy or sell a home right away because of a new job or transfer, growing families, or downsizing the timing is right regardless of the market. The agent's job is to build a relationship, help them understand what's happening in their market, and support their client through one of the largest transactions they'll ever make.

Do I need to use a Real Estate agent?

A real estate agent is more than just a sales person.  A real estate agent acts on your behalf, providing you with advice, guidance and expertise in the local market when buying or selling a home.

A listing agent will help you every step of the way when listing your home from helping you decide on the correct price, managing all the details of getting your home ready to put on the market, marketing your home, negotiating the best price and terms and everything else necessary to close on the sale of your property.

The market in the Triangle is very hot right now and an having a buyers agent will keep you current with information about what has sold or is coming for sale soon, so you’ll be ready move quickly in this fast paced competitive market. They also make recommendations on what terms and prices to offer as well as negotiating a deal with your best interest in mind.

Who pays for the agents commissions?

One of the reasons I find that clients ask the question about the need of having a Realtor when buying a home is because they don’t understand who pays the agents fees.  There are no guarantees, however, in most cases the seller pays the Realtor fees.

Should I buy or rent a home?

Buying a home can be a solid investment.   The current interest rates are still low although we are seeing rates starting to go up.  While the interest rates are so low, it actually can be cheaper to pay a mortgage right now than paying rent. There is more to consider than just your payments though, including the housing market, interest rates, timing and your future plans. Also think about your flexibility or mobility, your career and family plans. 

Buying a home is a great option in many cases, but you want to consider all aspects of home ownership before taking that big step.

Should I get pre-approved for a mortgage before looking for a home? 

YES! That should be your first step when considering purchasing a home!  There are many of reasons why you should talk with a lender and get pre-approved for a loan . Talking with a bank before looking at homes can help you understand exactly how much you can afford.  There is no reason to look at homes that are listed for $300,000 if you can only afford up to $250,000.

Another reason to talk with a bank before looking at homes is so you understand exactly what other costs are involved.  There are many home buyers who don’t understand the difference between a down payment, pre-paid items, and escrows, which can be thoroughly explained by a mortgage professional.

There are many different programs and types of loans available. If you’re a first time home buyer, talking with a bank before looking at homes is strongly suggested.  Different programs can vary from state to state and county to county, so it is important to know exactly what’s available to you.