Thinking of Buying or Selling a Home in 2020?
Posted June 21, 2020 in Special Features
Start the Process with Education, Says A Local Real Estate Expert
Local Realtor® Tracie DeMars says that buying or selling a home is a major life event and can be a real adventure. As a real estate expert she advises education as a valuable tool for navigating the process.
“When I bought my first home in 2001 I had no idea what I was doing,” she said. “Anything I could do wrong I did wrong. When I started working for a builder I realized all the things I did wrong.”
Tracie believes the availability of education and helpful classes would have made her first home buying experience better and prevented her from making mistakes.
“At that time there were no classes except for one class that was eight hours long and it had nothing to do with what we were dealing with,” she remembers. “When my husband and I left the class we were more confused than when we started. After I got licensed in early 2005 there were still no classes and people were asking me questions.”
This is why DeMars began offering free real estate education classes to the community in 2006. “I decided to start teaching classes to answer the real questions and to basically demystify the process and real estate verbiage.”
Now she and lender associate Chris Berg from Cardinal Financial teach classes together for both the buying process and the selling process. “Chris and I teamed up about ten years ago,” Tracie said. “He’s a great guy and super funny!”
The homebuyers class covers everything from credit scores, grants, and loan programs to making an offer and how to make sure your Realtor is working for you. The home sellers class discusses the steps of the whole process including the juggling involved in selling your home and using the equity to purchase a new one.
“When we teach the classes we go over the contracts and forms and the pros and cons and what they really mean,” Tracie says. “And we don’t want to teach just the good stuff. We talk about things that could go wrong and go over the questions people should be asking but don’t know how to ask.”
Tracie DeMars and Chris Berg want to be clear that these classes are a public service for the good of the community and not for promotional reasons. “The classes are not about finding clients,” she says. “If someone chooses to work with us after the class that’s a bonus. It’s community help and community education, doing something for the community that’s going to help everybody. Informed buyers and sellers will make better decisions and better decisions can affect everybody in a neighborhood.”
Typically these classes are held at the YMCA and Marshall Community Center but are currently being offered virtually. Tracie says that even when class facilities open again she still plans to offer a blend of virtual and in-person options. Look for the dates for upcoming classes in the July edition of The Columbian’s Home Book or visit www.freehomebuyerclasses.com, or call Tracie DeMars at 360-903-3504.