Raleigh - Cary Home Reviews & Market News!: Benefits of Using a Real Estate Agent - Questions your Realtor® Won't Answer

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Benefits of Using a Real Estate Agent - Questions your Realtor® Won't Answer

This is part of a series of the Benefits of Using a Realtor® or Real Estate Agent.  There are many Great Reasons to use a Realtor®.  However, there are some you many not even think about. 

Did you know, in North Carolina, Your Realtor® isn't responsible for telling you about area crime, registered offenders or the quality of schools?  And to be honest, if Realtors aren't careful, it could be considered "steering" which is against Fair Housing.

If your Realtor® won't tell you about the Quality of Schools, how do you find out?

Quality of schools can be a sticky subject.  I speak to people from many different schools in the area who Love their schools.  It's one of those things that is so subjective and sensative.  Plus, just because a school works for one child, who says it will be the best for every child?  You know your child best.  So, the best thing for a client to do is check out the schools themselves on the Wake County Public School System website.  If you want, you can call them, tell them if your child has special needs or talents an ask which school might be a good fit for your child.  In Wake County, there are many choices.  Wake County has traditional, year round, magnet, charter schools and more. You can also check out the many Private Schools in the area if you like.

If your Realtor® won't tell you about the Local Crime Rates, how do you find out?

Cary, NC is often rated as one of the safest towns in America. Many published reports show, Crime rates for the Triangle area are generally low.  However, we all have a different perspective on what is a lot of crime and what isn't.  We're from another state where we lock our doors.  We never felt unsafe or anything but, just thought it was better to be cautious. You may be from a town where everyone leaves their doors unlocked in case a friend is passing by and wants to stop in for a potty break or a cold glass of Sweet Tea (obviously in the south if they have sweet tea).  I've included a link in case some of you don't know what Sweet Tea is.  So, not only do I not know what is a high crime rate to you, I cannot and will not avoid showing homes in areas that meet your criteria.

So, how much Crime is too much?  Well, if it's important to you, you can check it out for yourself.

SpotCrime

If your Realtor® won't tell you about the Registered Offenders, how do you find out?

Ok, this is a tough one. I understand the concern.  However, I cannot guarantee someone on the registered offender list isn't moving in the the day you are or a year later.  I cannot guarantee everyone is registered. I cannot avoid a neighborhood because of this list.  If this is of interest to you as a homebuyer it is something you need to research yourself.  As NC Realtors, we are not responsible to tell you if the is someone living nearby or next door who is on the Registered Offender List.  However, if this is important to Buyers, they can find out for themselves.

NC General Attorney Registered Offender List

Family Watchdog

As a disclosure, you should know, these reports do change so whatever is accurate on these sites one day may be different another day. 

There are so many wonderful neighborhoods out there.  There is a house for everyone and for everyone a house.  My responsibility as a Realtor is to show you homes that meet your criteria and not to violate Fair Housing.  If your Real Estate Professional didn't disclose these things to you, now you understand why.  Simply put, There are Things your Realtor won't or can't tell you.

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Comment balloon 9 commentsCarla Freund • January 20 2011 10:36PM

Comments

Thanks Carla, good post.

cheers

Nor Yeretsian

Posted by Nor Yeretsian, Envoy Capitol Realty Inc., Brokerage Toronto (Envoy Capitol Realty Inc.) almost 9 years ago

In some neighborhoods the reported crime rate may not mean much.  I encourage people to drive through neighborhoods they are considering at different times of day and days of the week...like 9 PM on Friday night, or midnight on Saturday, or any weekday after school, to get a feeling for the neighborhood.

Posted by Hal Hovey, Realtor - Oak Harbor Homes For Sale Whidbey Island (VA & FHA home buyers, vacation homes, foreclosure homes) almost 9 years ago

Carl a- This is a great series on the importance of using a Realtor.  Definitely an eye opener!  People must take responsibility to do their own research because of fair housing laws and anti steering provisions you cannot make comments relating to the issues you outlined above.  Nice job educating your readers!

Posted by Nevin Williams, Senior Mortgage Advisor (Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation) almost 9 years ago

Nor - Thank you for visiting and commenting.

Hal - I think it's always a good idea to visit a neighborhood you're considering for many reasons.  After all, you can't buy your neighbors (usually). I do have buyers park and stroll through the neighborhood.  Sometimes they tell me things I didn't know such as they have block parties every Friday, or there's a Farmer's Market on Saturdays. If distance to and from work is a concern, they need to go there before and after work and take the drive as if they are already living in the neighborhood.  Traffic patterns can make a big difference.  I had one client ready to make an offer on a house and she visited a neighborhood to discover the homeowners weren't diligent about taking in their trash cans on trash day.  That was an important thing to her that I would have never know about. Another visited a neighborhood we had viewed on 3 separate occasions.  This time, he saw how low the flight pattern was.  While that's not normally an issue for many people who buy in that neighborhood, it was an issue for him. We wouldn't have known had he not made additional visits.

Posted by Carla Freund, Carolina Life RealEstate & Relocation 919-602-8489 (Keller Williams Preferred Realty) almost 9 years ago

Nevin - Thank you. I can't and I won't. It can be very uncomfortable if people make comments different than Fair Housing and assume you agree. That is another reason I love outlining the Fair Housing Rules right up front.  We just don't go there.  Thankfully, I really don't have any issues.

Posted by Carla Freund, Carolina Life RealEstate & Relocation 919-602-8489 (Keller Williams Preferred Realty) almost 9 years ago

Hi Carla, and excellent post with some great links for your area. We get asked these questions often and truly can only direct them to where to look if these things are very important to them.

Posted by Cindy Westfall, ABR,GRI Your Tualatin & Portland Metro Real Estate (Premiere Property Group,LLC Portland Metro & Suburbs Oregon) almost 9 years ago

Cindy - Thank you for commenting. You're right. Plus, there are so many great resources for home buyers that aren't even mentioned here. 

Posted by Carla Freund, Carolina Life RealEstate & Relocation 919-602-8489 (Keller Williams Preferred Realty) almost 9 years ago

Carla, in Georgia, the Registered Sextual Offender's website is actually included in the contract.  They can't say it wasn't available for them to check if they wanted to.  Enjoyed your post - interesting questions.

Posted by Sharon Kolb, Broker - Atlanta Decatur Homes (Atlanta Decatur Homes) almost 9 years ago

Sharon - Interesting.  I can understand why but, don't see it happening here anytime soon.

Posted by Carla Freund, Carolina Life RealEstate & Relocation 919-602-8489 (Keller Williams Preferred Realty) almost 9 years ago

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