ASK AN EXPERT Gillian Cunningham

Because buying or selling property is probably the most expensive transaction a person will ever make, it’s important to select the right real estate agent.

Q-What should I look for in a real estate agent?

Q-What items are needed to submit and offer?


Q-What should I look for in a real estate agent?

             A- Someone that is a full-time agent. Why would you work with someone that is not solely focused on your most expensive purchase or sale?

             – Someone to look out for your best interest, someone that will represent you and not both parties to the transaction as either a buyer’s agent or seller’s agent, but not both.

             – Someone to educate you on what’s happening in the current real estate market. Is there an abundance or shortage of properties available for sale?  How will this affect your buying or selling strategy?

Q-What items are needed to submit and offer?

            A- Loan pre-approval letter or letter of funds availability—obtain from loan officer/CPA/financial advisor/bank

            – Earnest Money—paid to seller to show you’re serious about purchasing the property; typically $500 or 1 percent of sale price

            – Termination Option Fee (for existing homes)—paid to seller for the unrestricted right to terminate the contract; typically $75 to $500 for three to 10 days

            – Inspection fees

            – Mechanical inspection—covers heating and cooling systems, electrical, plumbing, major appliances, etc.; costs $325 to $650, depending on property size

            – WDI (wood destroying insect) inspection—covers termites, carpenter ants, etc.; costs $75 to $200

            – Down payment

            – Sales price minimums: FHA, 3.5 percent; conventional, 5 to 10 percent

            – Closing costs—title search, appraisal, taxes, insurance, etc.; costs 3 to 6 percent of sales price depending, on price of property


Gillian Cunningham is the owner of Gillian Cunningham Realty Group, located at 6900 Dallas Pkwy., Ste. 110, in Plano. For more information, call 469-269-2754, email or visit

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