Important Questions
Every Buyer & Seller Should Know

Who Represents You?

Will You Make Sure I Understand What's Going To Happen Before It Actually Happens?

Do Things Ever Go Wrong?

How Much Money Will I Need and When?

Real Estate Vocabulary

Agency Vocabulary



   Doug Barry, Associate Broker

                     Licensed in Maryland
  Direct Line 410-207-4751  Office 410-583-5700  

75 (+) Things I Do For A Buyer

A REALTOR® must go through extensive training to get their license. Once they are licensed, there is regular training to make sure the agent stays up to date. To get access to information, the agent must join a Board of REALTORS© and a Multiple-Listing Service. They have to purchase an electronic keypad, which will give them access to properties. There is also a fair amount of work involved in finding buyers and sellers.

A REALTOR© provides a variety of services. At our first contact, before we meet, I will ask you some basic questions to determine your exact situation. I will then ask you to meet me in my office (or one of our offices convenient to you), so I can find out your wants and needs, and explain the process we will be going through. This is important so that you are prepared for everything that happens. Once you hire me as your agent, I take my responsibilities seriously. Below is a list of many of the services I provide for a buyer.


  1. Contact the buyer (or they may contact me) and determine their basic plans and where they are in the home search process.
  2. Explain the importance of working with an agent and how they will likely miss the perfect house when searching on their own.
  3. Arrange a meeting with the buyer and inform the buyer of what they will need to bring to the meeting.
  4. Meet with the buyer at a Long & Foster office (1 to 2 hours).
  5. Make sure the buyer is pre-approved with a lender.
  6. Financially pre-qualify the buyer if our lender is not available at our first meeting and the buyer has not been pre-approved elsewhere.
  7. Discuss financing options with the buyer.
  8. Explain fair housing guidelines to the buyer.
  9. Explain representation to the buyer and explain the importance of being represented by a buyer's agent.
  10. Advise the buyer on how much money they will need and when.
  11. Provide the buyer with a sample of the main body of the sales contract so that they can familiarize themselves with the contract before writing an offer, and answer any questions the buyer may have about the contract.
  12. Search for properties in the buyer's price range, based on specific criteria that the buyer wants in a property.
  13. Go over listings with the buyer to better define the buyer's search criteria.
  14. Explain the sales process with the buyer so they are prepared for everything that will be happening.
  15. Assist the buyer in getting their current house on the market (locally or out of town) or assist the buyer in getting out of their current lease if necessary.
  16. Map out properties that the buyer is interested in seeing and schedule appointments to show each property.
  17. Show properties to the buyer, carefully observe the condition of the property and point out features and concerns to the buyer.
  18. After the showings, discuss the properties with the buyer to determine interest and to further refine the buyer's search criteria (an ongoing process).
  19. Research how to handle any concerns on a property the buyer is considering.
  20. After finding a property the buyer is interested in, counsel the buyer on what they will need to do to purchase the property.
  21. Run a Competitive Market Analysis to help determine what the property should sell for.
  22. Obtain the Property Condition Disclosure/Disclaimer form and the Lead Disclosure from the listing agent or listing office if we did not get it at the listing.
  23. Check the Days On Market on the listing to help determine if it is reasonably priced and the odds of the seller accepting a lower offer (& how low we can go).
  24. Print out the tax record on the property to find any additional information that can help in negotiations.
  25. Check the zoning on the property, if necessary, to determine if the buyer can do everything they want to on the property and if everything currently on the property was done legally (for example, if a house with a second apartment is allowed to have a second apartment). Show the buyer how to verify the information so they get it directly from the zoning office.
  26. Help the buyer prepare an offer and negotiate in the best interests of the buyer, to help the buyer get the best possible deal without losing the house.
  27. Review and explain the full sales contract to the buyer.
  28. Advise the buyer on the importance of getting a home inspection and how to find a qualified home inspector.
  29. Explain common safety and environmental issues for the area and help the buyer determine which additional inspections they should get.
  30. Provide the buyer with a copy of the HUD/EPA pamphlet on lead.
  31. Explain home warranty programs to the buyer and provide literature on the different programs available.
  32. Provide the buyer with an itemized good-faith estimate of settlement costs, including downpayment and monthly payments.
  33. Get a pre-approval letter from the lender, specific to the property the buyer is putting an offer on.
  34. Submit the properly prepared offer to the listing agent and explain anything that might justify a lower offer (if necessary).
  35. Carefully review any counteroffers or changes to the contract from the seller, and advise the buyer of the advantages and disadvantages of each change.

Next - The Sale

100 Things I Do For A Seller


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