Florida’s Gulf Coast offers a tremendous range of unique locations for your dream home.
The use of a licensed Realtor acting as your Buyers Broker when planning your purchase can be invaluable, the buyer’s broker legally owes allegiance to the purchaser and will advise his or her client based upon their specific requirements, regardless of which agent is listing the property or building lot.
There is no charge to the buyer for this work, the seller’s real estate agent simply shares their listing fee with the buyer broker. Time can be saved with informed research being done by your buyer’s broker prior to homes or building lots actually being viewed.
Your Buyers Broker will have access to ALL listings (building plots/new homes/ re-sale) through the Multiple Listing Service (M.L.S). Area and price information can be shared and financial and deed restriction advice given. Once your purchasing parameters are established a computer search will locate suitable homes or building lots in the nominated area, listed by ALL Realtors.
Your Buyers Broker can then plan a route to view each of these options.
Choosing New Build
With Intimate knowledge of the surrounding area, the Buyers Broker’s role in helping you select a new home would be to advise on location, check the deed restrictions to ensure there are no problems with a short-term rental, help with the design of a suitable floor plan, advise on a suitable lender, act as your agent for passing correspondence during the loan application, liaise with the builder during construction, perform the final walk-through and help with furnishings if required.
Choosing an Existing Home
This can also have its attractions, for instance, immediate availability, location in a maturing neighborhood, or in the case of waterfront homes simply because there is limited land available.
A little time and money may have to be spent preparing the home if rentals are required, however, your Buyers Broker can advise on this and supervise any work in your absence if required.
SELECTING YOUR GULF COAST LOCATION
Fort Myers is located twenty miles north of Naples and adjacent to the exclusive Sanibel and Captiva Islands.
This area is an extremely popular winter destination for travelers from the northern United States and Canada. The area has also experienced a huge increase in popularity as a year round destination for UK and Europe.
Generally homes in the Fort Myers area are built in residential communities developed by specific builders. Setting a budget that works for you is the best way to start the process as it allows your Buyers Agent to map out available properties. From there your budget can be then tailored to suit your requirements so flexibility is the key to finding a property that best suits you.
Appreciation opportunities are excellent in Fort Myers as this area of SW Florida continues to see large amounts of investment dollars in new building and infrastructure projects.
The M.L.S. (Multiple Listing Service)
The M.L.S. lists every home or building lot, for sale by ANY real estate agent in the area. Your search should start with a knowledgeable Realtor who can pre-search for, location, price range, pool, etc. No need to drive around the streets looking at FOR SALE boards, searching the newspapers and magazines, or contacting different real estate companies.
Members of the M.L.S. co-operate on sales. Remember; any Realtor will be pleased to show and sell any property that is listed and not just the homes with their company sale board outside. However, if you are intending to rent out the property it is important to choose a Realtor who is knowledgeable on Homeowner Deed Restrictions, Property Management & Rental Opportunities.
This very efficient viewing system makes a sensible option for clients with limited time in the area and we would suggest the following scenario.
- Select the most interesting possibilities and let your Realtor plan a route.
- If there are a number of homes or building lots to view then do a drive-by and short list the best prospects.
- Carry out an inspection on the homes you are really interested in. Most properties have an electronic lock-box fitted which your Realtor can access. This gives availability for viewing without an appointment.
- Once you have selected a home or building plot your Realtor can prepare a written offer. (You should be aware that in Florida, offer to purchase contracts are legally binding and if your offer is accepted by the seller you are legally bound to proceed to purchase – this system ensures genuine intent and eliminates multiple offers).
- If your offer is accepted your Realtor will prepare the sales contract for signature and a deposit will be required.
- If a mortgage is required the contract is made contingent upon this being granted.
- It is unusual to have a chain sale in America and sellers tend to be ready to move out within a short period of time. The final closing or completion can take place as soon as the mortgage or other funds are in place.
- If you are not able to return to Florida for the closing then the title company will mail you out the closing papers for signature and your management company can take possession of the home on your behalf.
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