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    Taking a complex process and making it easy is our specialty!

    You’re ready to buy a home. How exciting! This will be one of the biggest and most important purchases you will ever make. We hope that we will be part of helping you enter into a new adventure of homeownership. We wanted to give you a detailed overview of what the whole buying process looks like and how our team can help you have a successful and stress-free home buying experience. 

    What to expect at your first meeting.

    Whether you are about to have your first meeting or just finished your first meeting with one of our agents, here’s what you should expect to discuss with your agent. 

    1. Your needs, wants, budget, and timeline for purchasing your next home.
    2. A rundown of the home-buying process.
    3. An explanation of the pre-approval process and lender recommendations.
    4. A review of the buyer’s agency contract and fee.

    After your first meeting, our team jumps into action to set up a number of systems for you to make the searching process efficient and the rest of the homebuying process a breeze. You will start hearing a few names and interacting with other members of our team through email and text. Here’s who you can expect to be in contact with.

    Jessica Kirkwood: She’s our Transaction Coordinator and will be sending you paperwork and status updates throughout your transaction. She makes sure every i is dotted and T is crossed when it comes to your purchase agreements, addendums, title work, and more. You’ll be doing a lot of communication with her over the transaction, and we know that you’ll love having her on your side!

    Mark Deering: Our team leader and REALTOR of over 25 years. He’s here as a resource for you and your agent if surprising situations arise or there are tough questions you need some advice on. His experience is invaluable.

    Your agent will be working with our team to set up these key things for you right after your first meeting.

    1. A group text chat with Jessica, Mark, you, and your agent.
    2. A saved search based off of the criteria you discussed for your next home.

    Before Looking at More Homes, Get a Pre-Approval Letter.

    You will have discussed pre-approval during your first meeting. If you’re not pre-approved, this is something that we highly recommend completing before we look at more homes. It will help narrow down your budget and show sellers that you are serious about buying. It allows your agent to write an offer quickly when you’ve found a home you love. Your agent can help you find a lender that suits your needs and is local to our area.

    Looking for Home

    Our agents are full-time REALTORS and keep up-to-date on the market. Searching homes every day, knowing what offers are winning, and how the economy is affecting the real estate market. Your agent is an expert in the West Michigan market. This is where you want to rely on our expertise and experience. Besides creating a saved search for you, your agent is also doing these things to help you find a home.

    1. Searching MLS and For Sale by Owner Homes to find other listings that fit your criteria.
    2. Cross-referencing off-market/up-and-coming listings with our team and other agents in our brokerage so you hear about them before the public.
    3. Setting up showings at listings that are of interest.
    4. Discussing with the listing agent any other information needed in regards to seller’s disclosure or offers before a showing or writing an offer.
    5. Familiarizing themselves with the neighborhood before showing you the home so they are knowledgeable on how to put together a strong offer, but also to help guide you if asked on the pros and cons of the neighborhood.
    6. Showing you homes and offering guidance when asked.
    7. Listening to your feedback and adjusting your search parameters and goals as needed.

    Creating an Offer

    You've found the perfect home, now it’s time to put in an offer! This is where you will be glad you are working with our team! Our team are experts in crafting offers. We have a great track record when writing offers; typically coming in the top 3 offers if we don’t win. Lean on our team when it comes time to write an offer, and understand that it could take more than one offer before we win! Your agent’s job is to gather all pertinent information, draft the offer, and send it to the seller’s agent on your behalf. There is a lot that goes into this step of the process. Here’s what your agent and our team will be doing for you when drafting your offer. 

    1. Contact the listing agent on behalf of the buyer to discover any important information before drafting the offer.
    2. Obtain and review any homeowners association documents with you. (if applicable)
    3. Review all elements of the multiple-page purchase agreement (ranges from 6 pages to 30+ in some areas) with you.
    4. Explain each element of the purchase agreement/offer and how it is advantageous to you and the seller.
    5. Review the Seller’s Disclosure Statement with you and provide guidance.
    6. Review the Lead-Based Paint Disclosure with you and provide guidance.
    7. Draft the purchase agreement/offer for the buyer.
    8. Submit the offer and all other documents to the listing agent.
    9. Contact the listing agent to confirm receipt, discuss the highlights, and answer any questions.

    Once your offer has been received then your agent will keep in contact with the listing agent to communicate your strength as a buyer and see where your offer stands with the sellers. Your agent will be your liaison between you and the listing agent. As your liaison, they will…

    1. Present any counter-offers to you.
    2. Advise you and draft counter-offers to send back to the listing agent.
    3. Draft and add all addendums agreed upon to your purchase agreement.
    4. Send the revised purchase agreement to the listing agent.
    5. Present the good news of an accepted offer when it happens!
    6. Send all paperwork to the title company so you can proceed forward in the transaction.
    7. Create a game plan for the next offer if yours is not accepted. 

    How We Help You Win in Multiple Offer Situations!

    Our team has a strong track record of either winning or coming in 2nd or 3rd for multiple offer situations. This is because of our team structure and practices that set us apart from other agents in the area.

    • We write a lot of offers. Because of the team aspect, we are consistently writing offers and getting feedback on the market through those offers. That feedback is then shared with the team so everyone knows how the market is behaving. This gives us more knowledge when we write offers than a solo agent.
    • We have over 25 years of experience in real estate. This means that we have created strategies in a wide variety of markets so we can rely on past and current data to know what strategies to implement.
    • We communicate consistently with the listing agent. We will call, text, and email the listing agent to know what offers are in beforehand and to advocate for you through the offer writing process. This is something that many agents don't do and has been noticed by listing agents that we interact with positioning our team as desirable to work with.
    • We are a full-time real estate team. Real estate is our livelihood. We aren't something else by day and a real estate agent by night. Because of this full-time commitment to real estate, we live and breathe the market and constantly have a thumb on what is going on.

    These characteristics of our team mean that you have a higher likelihood of winning when it comes time to submit an offer. You can also know that our advice comes from a place of knowledge and strategy vs. just seeing what sticks and if it will work.

    What Happens After an Accepted Offer?

    First, you celebrate! Then our team jumps into action to make sure everything is on time so you can get to the closing table and move in! Two big things happen between an accepted offer and the closing table that your agent will be busy helping you with: Inspections and Appraisal. 


    This is the first hurdle after your offer is accepted, but don’t fear, we are here to help you navigate this step! Rely on our expertise and ask lots of questions if you have them! Here is how we will be helping you during the inspection process.

    1. Ensuring you comply with Home Inspection Clause requirements.
    2. Being present at your inspection for questions and to discuss the home with the inspector.
    3. Review the inspection report with you to help you understand its contents.
    4. Giving guidance on any potential issues discovered during your inspection.
    5. Negotiating on your behalf for any potential repairs required before closing.
    6. Drafting all addendums related to repairs for the purchase agreement.
    7. Helping you find reputable contractors for repairs. 
    8. Arranging payment and overseeing completion of all required repairs on your behalf, if needed.


    After inspections comes the appraisal. This stage is usually pretty uneventful, but it is another step where your agent can help explain the process and the results as well as its impact on you. Your lender will schedule your appraisal once the inspections have been done, but our team will lend their expertise during the follow-up phase. After the appraisal, your file goes into final underwriting with the lender. They will be in touch with any last-minute items needed. Once we hear the “clear to close” from the lender, we can schedule the closing!

    Preparing for Closing Day

    You’ve made it through the inspection and appraisal process! While we’re waiting to meet at the closing table, our team will be working to make sure your closing doesn’t come with any “surprises.” We will be..

    1. Double-checking all paperwork.
    2. Tracking the needed repairs to ensure timely completion if there were any added in an addendum.
    3. Scheduling the closing.
    4. Scheduling a 24-hour walkthrough.
    5. Attending your 24-hour walkthrough.
    6. Helping resolve any issues that may have been found during your walkthrough.
    7. Getting your special closing gift.
    8. Attending your closing to celebrate with you and answer any questions!

    After Closing Day

    We don’t abandon you after your closing! Our team is still around to answer questions and help with a few more key things. Here are items you can expect us to do after closing.

    1. Receive the keys to your new home from the sellers.
    2. Coordinate possession of your new home if it didn’t happen at close.
    3. Recommend contractors for help with cleaning or repairs you may want.
    4. Answer any questions you have that may arise regarding your home.
    5. Invite you to join us at events we host.
    6. Check in with you to see how we can help in the future.
    7. Arrange for a Welcome Home photoshoot, if desired.

    So, What does all of this Cost?

    Bear with us through this uncomfortable bit. Nobody likes talking about money and payment, but we believe in transparency at the Deering Team and want you to know how it all works. To make it a little easier to understand, we have provided the graphics below.


    We charge a 3% fee for representing you as a buyer. This fee could be covered by the listing office which offers a commission as part of their listings or there may be times when we ask you, the buyer, to pay some or all of the fee. Because listing office commissions are negotiable and not regulated by any corporation, governing body, or MLS, there are scenarios where the seller will offer to pay less than our 3% fee. In this case, the difference would be included in your closing cost with the title company. We will walk you through these scenarios as they happen. Our team desires to be transparent and describe how our buyer's agents are paid and the different payment scenarios that could arise.


    Let’s also talk about how long it can take to find you a home. These are some stats on the average time it takes from finding a home to moving in and then breaking that down into what an agent earns on average per day.


    Whew! We know that was a lot of information, but we hope it helps you understand more of what a Buyer’s agent does and how they earn their living. We know that there are plenty of real estate agent cliches out there, but we want you to know that our agents work hard for you and want to create a real estate experience that is seamless, stress-free, and one you’ll talk about to your friends and family for years to come. We believe in integrity and accountability in our relationship with you, our client. 

    If you’re ready to commit, we ask that you read the sample Buyer’s Agency Agreement below and fill out the form. Once the form is filled out, we will email you a filled-out Buyer’s Agency Agreement for you to sign. Once signed, we can continue forward with looking at homes and finding you the perfect home!

    I'm Ready to Commit to the Deering Team.

    Fill out this form if you are ready to sign a Buyer's Agency Agreement, and we will send you a copy to sign through DotLoop.

    I have Read and Understand the Sample Buyer's Agency Agreement