J & Z Real Estate, LLC


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General Questions

    • What is so important about Buyer's Agency?  I have no problems getting into homes by calling the listing agent.
      • Buyer's agency allows you, the buyer, to have your own agent in a real estate purchase who works exclusively for you (not you and the seller at the same time).  Workng with a buyer's agent over time allows the agent to become familiar with your specific needs and preferences.  Your buyer's agent will be able to set-up appointments for you to see the homes of interest to you.  And perhaps most importantly, your buyer's agent will be with you throughout your home search.  They will have looked at each home with you.  They can help you compare one home to another.  And because they know what you are looking for, they can more efficiently search the Multiple Listing Service to find new listings that really meet your needs.  Now that's convenience.
    • What is meant by the term "agency"?
      • Agency means when one person has been given authorization to act on the behalf of another in a specific situation.  The "agent" has certain responsibilities or duties to their client.  In real estate these duties can be summarized as: performance, loyalty, reasonable care, and an acounting for all monies received with regard to the transaction. 
    • Are all real estate commssions 6%? 
      • Real estate commissions are not set at a specific number industry wide.  The Sherman Anti-trust Act prohibits this.  One real estate brokerage (with one or more offices) can give its agents guidelines or even a specific commission rate.  But that rate applies only to that brokerage.  Different brokerages are not allowed to "fix prices".  There is no such thing as a "standard commission" across the industry.  Commissions are typically whatever is negotiated between the seller and their agent, with the agent conforming to their broker's guidelines.
    • What is so special about "staging my home"?  Why should I care?
      • After you've gone on a thousand or so showing appointments, you will know the answer to this!  But to save us both some time, let me explain.  You and I ignore many things that we see in our homes everyday.  This is because we are not home shopping, but living in our homes.  We can overlook dated wallpaper, peeling paint, too much furniture, and our prized porcelain bird collection.  Buyers cannot do this.  Even the ones who say they can, really can't.  The value of the home is eroded by the distractions.  Staging your home is about playing up all of your home's assets and removing absolutely all distractions.  Your home will sell faster and for more money.
    • What do I need to know to become a real estate investor?
      • How much time do you have?  Just kidding.  The simple definition of investing is to look at all the expense cash flows associated with buying and holding a property and comparing them to the revenue cash flows with holding or selling a property.  If the revenue outweighs the expense, you might say it was a good investment.  You also need to be able to assess the risk involved (what can go wrong?) and the amount of time required to create the expected revenue.  I am a landlord as well as a homeowner, so I understand both mentalities.  I can't answer every question that an investor will need to answer (How much risk is too much?), but I can make sure that my investor clients are asking all the right questions.
    • My company is transferring me out of state.  I want you to list my home, but you are not on the "List" of Realtors the relocation company has provided me.  Can we still work together?
      • You can inform your relocation company that you have a different agent in mind (me) who is an experienced relocation service provider and is willing to pay the referral fee.  Typically the relocation company will agree to put me on the list and then tell you how many agents to interview before you select the one you want.  I have worked with countless relocation companies and have yet to be told that the "list" is carved in stone!
    • I'm having a financial emergency and I already owe more on my mortgage than my home is worth.  What do I do, just walk away from my home?
      • Walking away from your home guarantees you'll be foreclosed on.  Foreclosure should be the last resort because the consequences are severe.  Instead you should consider pursuing a short sale.  This means you obtain your lender's approval to sell the home for less than your mortgage balance. Not everyone is eligible for a short sale.  You must be able to demonstrate your financial hardship.  But a short sale does far less damage to your credit score, credit history, job related security clearances, and your eligibility for Fannie Mae loans in the future.  I am a Certified Distressed Property Expert and have been trained in the process of short sales.  I can help you navigate this process while we work together to sell your home. 
    • Should I be comfortable with having an agent act as a dual agent?
      • When the broker acts as a dual agent, it represents both the buyer and the seller in the same transaction.  This is the lowest level of client service an agent can provide.  The agent is responsible for protecting each client's confidential  information.  However, the agent cannot be loyal to one party at the expense of the other.   So the agent can no longer be an advocate specifically looking out for one client's best interests.


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J & Z Real Estate, LLC
Shana Jefferis, CDPE
450 Highland Avenue,  Naperville, IL 60540
Phone: 630-300-3739
Email:  shana_jefferis@yahoo.com