How to select a mortgage lender?

When searching for the right mortgage lender in Greensboro, North Carolina, you should seek multiple quotes from multiple sources.  Then sort quotes you receive by whatever matters most to you: APR, interest rate, monthly payment, lender fees, loan program, lender rating or cheapest cost over a certain amount of time.

Observe the way the lender responds to you when you first contact him or her

Are they prompt to respond to your initial contact? Are they friendly and courteous? Do they honor their quote that you saw online or in an offline ad? Are they willing to explain things to you or educate you about different choices? Do they proactively discuss the timeline of the loan (estimated closing date, when to lock the rate)? Do they discuss when/how rates will change?

Check out the lender’s reviews and testimonials.

Search the web for the lender’s reviews and third party testimonials.  See if local REALTORs refer clients to certain mortgage companies and see if they tend to stay away from them.  Review the lenders mission statements and decide if using a lender that is local, community based and cares about whom it services matters to you.  If you see that mortgages are a commodity, and you already know everything about the lending process, then maybe you should chose a large national lender offering the “lowest rate”.  If service and community matter to you, then maybe finding a local knowledgeable mortgage lending institution would be the best route.


Select local when you can, a personal visit goes a long way.


Greensboro NC voted #19 Best Places toLive

In a recent report release by Greensboro,North Carolina was voted #19 in their Top 100. focuses on small to mid-sized towns across America and decided Greensboro had what it takes to break the Top 20!!  Citing “excellent schools, plenty of higher education options, quality healthcare, award winning hospitals and downtown that is moving forward as their foundation for #19 on the list.  Read the full story here




Before You Sign a Contract to Build a New Home

You need to have clear communications on expectations with a builder. If you want to have regular meetings with your builder, talk about that before you sign the contract. If you want specific upgrades, make sure they are in the contract. You should expect updates on timeline and budget regularly. If you do not get them, ask for them. The builder should never hesitate to give you news that you might not like. It is better to face a problem head on than ignore it until it becomes a major concern. Your builder needs to be your partner in this endeavor, not someone you have to chase down.

If the builder is not meeting your expectations, take action sooner, rather than later. After you sign a contract, some builders will ignore your need for regular communications. If you are not getting answers or not getting phone calls back, find the builder and have a frank discussion. You are the one paying for your new home. The builder needs to recognize that. Acting quickly to correct problems will give you a better home.

Bill Norton

Lessons on How to Choose a Realtor When Buying a New Home

Buying a new home is not the same a buying an existing one. You need to have a realtor by your side in the process. Many decide to buy a new home for the modern layout and so they do not have the worries than an older home can bring. You still need a real estate professional that knows the laws of the state and can deal with the legal paperwork that real estate purchases require. Here are a few lessons on how to choose a realtor when buying a new home.

1. Before choosing your realtor, decide what particular area in which you want to live. For example, if you want to buy a new home in a busy suburban area near Raleigh, NC, you do not want to find a real estate agent that deals with homes 50 miles away near the small community of Mebane, NC. Narrowing down your choices will depend on where you plan to work. Being within a certain commuting distance will help some make the decision. Many want lower property taxes if possible. Investigate the area and then start looking for your new realtor.

2. Look for a realtor that works with new developments in your chosen area. Some realtors work almost exclusively with existing homes. They know the older neighborhoods and can help you find the perfect home in one of those locations. However, if you ask that realtor about the new developments, they may only know the name of it. Commission rates can be different for new homes vs. older ones. They are more comfortable with older homes.

You want a realtor that knows these developments intimately. They should know the builders personally. This type of realtor will work with you to find the perfect development and the perfect floor plan for your new home.

3. Get information on what type of business that realtor has completed over the past couple of years. Some real estate agents have had a real time selling in the tough real estate economy. Some have had better success than others have. You want a real estate agent that will be honest about their success. They should also have written recommendations from prior clients. This combination will give you an idea of their professionalism and success rate.

4. You want a realtor that understands your vision for your new home. When building a new home, everyone seems to have a mental picture of how the new home should look. However, translating that so someone else can picture the same thing can be difficult. A good new home realtor will help the buyer take that vision and translate it. That translation will give the realtor the information necessary for finding the right home.

5. The realtor needs to have the ability to take your ideas and show you new construction options that fit it. Your ideas are out and the real estate professional understand the. That is where their knowledge of the new home developments in the area can help. They will know which developments would fit best with the buyers’ vision and the budget. They may even know the exact plan that will help the buyer fulfill their vision of a new home.

6. You want a realtor that has a good working relationship with builders and can speak their language. Builders and realtors both work with homes. They use some of the same language. However, some things are quite different. A good real estate professional can bridge that gap and help a new home buyer work with the builder. This is essential when finding a place to build a new home.

7. A good realtor for your new home search is someone who knows the area well. This is a bit different from knowing about the new developments in the area. The real estate professional needs to know about the schools in the area. They need to understand how long it takes to get from the development to common areas of employment. They need to know places for shopping, entertainment, and dining out. It is all about know the area intimately and fitting the property with the new home buyer.

8. The final choice you make in real estate professionals needs to work for you. You are putting your trust in this person to help you get your dream of a new home underway. If you find that you do not like this person or something is not right, listen to your gut. You need to have a great deal of trust in that person.

When making a new home purchase, you are making a very large commitment. You need a real estate professional at your side to make the process go easier. They can help you find the right development and even help choose the right floor plan for your new home. Use these lessons and you will have an easier time. Traffic Realty has Real Estate Agents ready to assist you with all your real estate needs and new home specialist.

Bill Norton

The Best Advice for Choosing a Realtor

You can get all the referrals you want. You can check on the realtor with all the professional organizations to which they belong. The best advice for choosing a realtor is meeting that person. Check their references and make sure they have no professional issues in the back ground. However, meeting that person face to face will tell you a great deal about them. Do they approach you as a professional realtor? Do they remind you of a snake oil salesman? Would they be someone you could recommend to a friend?

Your personal reaction to a real estate professional will tell you what you need to know. Make your choice wisely and you can get the home of your dreams.

Bill Norton