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Buying a Home

Advice for Buyers

Buying your new home can be the most exciting and the most nerve-racking experience. In order to make the process a positive one, take this helpful real estate advice to heart.  Consider the following information to determine what lender you will use and whether or not you should use a buyer’s agent. It may help you avoid many mistakes. Here is the general roadmap for happy house hunting!

Financing First – Your Lender

Before you start scheduling showings, you should contact a reputable loan officer to guide you through the financial process.

The Merrill Group has years of experience and has worked with a variety of lenders over that time. Due to our experiences, our greatest trust goes to the Brett Wilson Team at CityWide Home Loans. With top notch customer service, this lender will guide you through the jungle of mortgage lending. Brett Wilson and his team will advise you on your credit situation and suggest areas where you can improve your score. Unlike other lenders, Brett and his team will counsel you through the process to getting preapproved. Buyers have told us of lenders dropping them with no counsel and telling them to come back when they are “ready.” You will not get that abandonment with Brett Wilson.

With CityWide being a mortgage broker, they can often get better rates from your bank than if you walk into the branch due to their volume of loans. They are a lender everyone should shop for rates with.

No Money Down Loans

There are currently No Money Down Loan Options. For more information contact Brett and his team, or Click Here to be directed to Brett’s website where you can get his contact information, utilize a mortgage calculator, or start an application. A full application with a lender will give you a pre-approval which is what you need for a strong offer.

  • Pre-Qualification: Only tells you how much you can afford for a home.
  • Pre-Approval: Tells you how much the bank will guarantee to lend you for a home.

To begin the process of getting a Home Loan Click Here.

Smart Planning

When budgeting for your home purchase, don’t forget to include other costs that will arise like:

  • Inspections
  • Repairs/Upgrades
  • Closing Costs
  • Contingencies
  • And Other Fees

Essentially…Free Consulting from an Agent

Many buyers are unaware that a buyer’s agent is essentially free to assist them with their transaction. (Some brokerages have a low administrative fee that many lenders factor into their closing costs or reduce their closing costs to cover for the buyer. This fee is usually a few hundred dollars.)

When an agent secures a new home for sale and lists it on the MLS, that listing agent secures a commission percentage through a contract with the seller.  The listing agent splits that commission with a buyer’s agent for bringing a buyer who purchases the property and doing the other half of the work; therefore, it is the seller paying for your representation while your agent maintains a fiduciary responsibility to you.

Unrepresented Buyers

If an unrepresented buyer purchases a listed property, the listing agent has legally binding rights to keep the full commission. The buyer must be ready to negotiate directly against a seasoned professional, understand contracts and contract law, and all of their rights as a buyer. It is not the listing agents obligation to assist the buyer. The listing agent has no fiduciary responsibility to have any of the buyer’s interests in mind and should maintain focus and only negotiate solely in their client’s (the seller’s) best interest.

What a Great Buyer’s Agent Will Do

A great buyer’s agent will understand in detail the qualities you are looking for in your new home. He/she will ask you many questions and will search out properties for you. Your agent should consult you through your decision making process. Sometimes – this includes telling you direct things you may not want to hear.

The majority of buyers aren’t exactly sure what their new home looks like in their mind, or they are sure when they begin their search – but that picture changes once they start looking. A great buyer’s agent will try to head off disagreements between husband and wife during the hunt – as this can be a common occurance.

The right buyer’s agent will help you work through issues in your mind and will not allow you to settle for a property that isn’t “the one,” but rather, he/she will encourage you to keep looking – no matter how much time it takes – until you find the one that you know is your new home.

After You’ve Found “The One”

Once you have found your new home, your agent will ensure your legal contracts are in order throughout the transaction. He/she will communicate regularly with the lender to help keep deadlines on track. A great agent can refer you to a legitimate home inspection company to make sure you aren’t purchasing problems. Make sure that your inspection company has errors and omissions insurance and stand behind their inspection reports. You do not have to be specially licensed in Utah to be a home inspector.

Jennifer Merrill

Jennifer Merrill of the Merrill Group has been leading the buyer’s team since the beginning. Due to her experience and analytical strengths, she often reviews legal contracts and negotiation strategies for the Listing Team and interactions with sellers represented by The Merrill Group.

With Jennifer’s background in Corporate America, she provides an air of professionalism and keen attention to detail to every transaction. Her client’s needs are always first, and you can expect sharp negotiation skills and strategies. Jennifer easily understands her client’s vision during their home search and quickly serves her clients towards fulfillment of that vision.

Everyone on The Merrill Group Buyer’s team is personally trained by Jennifer. They discuss in detail each client and every transaction. To reach Jennifer, you may phone or text  801-613-7253 or email jennifer.merrill@century21.com.

To Begin your Home Search, Click Here.




“Jennifer Merrill was amazing to work with!! Over a 1 year process of trying to find the perfect property my wife and I put Jennifer through the ringer. However, Jennifer was always there for us regardless. She always made sure our questions were answered, and went above and beyond anything I ever expected from an agent. She was open and honest about all the properties we looked into. Her and the Everest Realty team were very knowledgeable, helpful and very enjoyable to work with. I would absolutely recommend Jennifer Merrill to anyone looking to purchase, and would use her again in a heartbeat.”

Blake F, Salt Lake City (Buyer) – May 2018

“Jennifer Merrill is an exceptional professional in the real estate field. She is very good at her job and has the qualities of a top notch real estate agent.

She is patient, reliable, a great negotiator and she is accessible at all times. Jennifer Merrill has a lot of knowledge and experience helping clients purchase and sell real estate in the Salt lake county real estate area.

With Jennifer, I can attest to the fact that you will be getting the best service and assistance through every step of your real estate purchasing or selling journey.

I recommend Jennifer Merrill to any one who needs a top notch agent any day.”

Alexander N. West Jordan (Buyer) – January 2018