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I love the challenge of matching people up with the property that's right for them. Sometimes we find that property right away, but then I've had lake buyers I've worked with for four years before we found the right property. Oftentimes, you don't know how you feel about a lake property, country living, or moving to the inner city, until you get out and start looking. Usually, the first time I take buyers out, I don't worry so much about finding the perfect place, rather I try to show them a variety, different areas, different lakes, and at the end of the day we all have a better idea what we are looking for.

Some of the questions I will ask are lifestyle questions:

  • How do you see yourself using this property - if it's a lake home do you water ski, swim, or fish?
  • If it's a residential property - do you want to be able to walk or bike to work? How far are you willing to drive?
  • What price are you trying to stay below - be sure to factor in costs if a property needs remodeling?
  • What style of home do you want - do you need a property with no stairs, or a great home for entertaining?
  • What area(s) do you prefer?
  • What extras are you willing to pay for?
  • If you plan to finance do you have a pre-approval letter?
  • If you are looking at country property, do you currently have, or intend to have animals - we need to pay attention to zoning?
  • If you are interested in a townhome or condo - are pets allowed or if it's an investment do they allow rental?


Getting a pre-approved mortgage is a great way to get started. With a mortgage approval, you will be in a better position to negotiate with sellers. You will also be able to close on a property quicker than other buyers. This shows the seller how serious you are about the property, and it will make the seller more comfortable working with you. Many agents now also require proof of ability to purchase for cash purchases. This may be a letter from your bank, your stockbroker, or some other person willing to sign a document assuring the seller that you do indeed have the funds to close.

NOTE: If the property you want to write an offer on is bank owned, or a short sale, most banks require a pre-approval letter accompany your offer or they won't even look at it.

If you decide to apply for a mortgage, you will need to supply information with regards to your income, expenses, and obligations. The bank, or mortgage company, will give you a list of the items you will need to have. Got bad credit? Many lenders will work with you on how to clean up your credit problems. I work with various banks and mortgage companies and I'd be happy to furnish you with contact information.

Edina Realty, Inc. - Gwenn Baker - - ,
Phone: 612-741-0153   Email: gwennbaker@edinarealty.com

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