Fairfield County Buyer's Guide


Financing Your New Home

In the current real estate market, it's more important than ever to know where you stand with potential lenders. Prior to beginning your Connecticut home search, do your homework.

  • Check your credit report. This is the official site to obtain a free credit report from each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. For a small fee, you can also obtain your FICO score, which lenders use to help determine the amount and terms of the loans for which you qualify.
  • If there are any glitches or problems, resolve them as soon as possible.
  • Pay all of your bills on time, which improves your FICO score.
  • Do not apply for any new credit, which lowers your FICO score.
  • Get prequalified, know how much mortgage you qualify for, and the terms of the loan, so combined with your down payment, you know how much you are able to spend.
  • Even better: get preapproved; have a mortgage commitment in hand from a lender to maximize your negotiating position.
  • Determine what you are willing to pay; you may want a more modest home than you can afford, choosing to spend more of your income educating your children or grandchildren, supporting charities, traveling or otherwise enjoying life’s pleasures.

Selecting a Mortgage Broker or Banker

If you don’t have a Connecticut mortgage broker or bank relationship, I can refer you to several in the Fairfield County area who will go over what is available in the current market. They can also help determine for you the right type of financing: adjustable; fixed for terms of 15, 20 or 30 years; or any other options.

Finding the Best Home for You

As a Fairfield County buyer’s agent, my goal is to locate the best property with the most long-term value and at the best price with the best possible terms and conditions. Using your criteria, I will research all real estate listings in your price range to find those that fit. I’ll also provide a property history to include:

  • market time, original price, number of price reductions
  • a comparison of the house to others on the market
  • any offers that have been made

Each showing is an education to help you understand the current market. When something meets your criteria and is a good value, it pops to you.

Making An Offer, Getting To Closing

Presentation

Presentation is key. I approach real estate negotiations firmly and with facts, but also with sensitivity. Being respectful of the seller’s situation creates a smoother transaction for everyone.

Agreement

Once an agreement is reached, I will guide you through inspections of the home’s mechanical and structural systems, and renegotiate if deficiencies are found. I can refer you to Connecticut inspectors or repair people if needed. Inspections include:

  • roof
  • foundation
  • well and septic
  • radon in the air and water
  • insect infestation or damage
  • water / drainage issues
  • heating / air conditioning problems
  • plumbing
  • electrical

Contract

I will provide you with several attorney referrals if needed and work with your attorney to ensure all paperwork is completed expeditiously.

Post Contract

There are often issues and details to be tended to between contract signing and closing, such as outstanding contingency dates to be met, details to take care of prior to walk-through and closing that have been promised by the seller , etc. My part of the job isn’t finished until every detail is addressed — sometimes requiring me to be a bit of a nag, but I’m a nice nag and persistence is one of my best qualities. At the time your walk-through, there will be no disappointing surprises. As your agent I am committed to this.

Closing

I have met the moving trucks, helped unpack, pulled up old carpeting, removed old curtain rods, taken care of babies, called for pizza, and even made up beds for that first night! My mission is to get you settled on closing day by helping in any way.

Post Closing

I'm just a phone call away with any question, emergency, dry cleaner recommendation, or any reason (big or small)! I'm on the school “emergency contact” list for more than a couple of families that I have sold homes to — I consider it an honor. It is my pleasure (and my reward) to make your move as seamless as I possibly can.

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Cathy Blount is a Fairfield County realtor specializing in Westport, CT homes. She is a top-producing real estate agent for The Riverside Realty Group in Westport. As a Connecticut real estate agent she also works with real estate clients buying and selling Fairfield County homes in Weston, Fairfield, Southport, Norwalk, Rowayton, Darien, New Canaan and Greenwich. She is available to consult with clients interested in Fairfield County properties seven days a week and can be reached through e-mail or by phone at 203-858-8710.