Q & A: Whom to Contact

Click a question to jump right to the answer:

  1. How do I find a real estate attorney?
  2. What are closing costs?
  3. What standards do appraisers use to estimate the value of a home?
  4. Where can I find housing market statistics for my area?
  5. Where can I find information on filing a consumer complaint?

How do I find a real estate attorney?

When purchasing a home, you will want the guidance of a trusted real estate attorney. Your real estate agent will be the best source for an attorney, but you can also ask your friends and family members if they have any recommendations of real estate attorneys they have used in the past.

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What are closing costs?

Closing costs are the transaction fees charged by a lender during the purchase of a home. Generally closing costs cover items such as origination fees, title fees, appraisals, discount points, underwriting, etc. When searching for a lender, always ask for a Good Faith Estimate (GFE). A GFE allows you to see all of the lender’s estimated costs for closing prior to committing to the lender.

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What standards do appraisers use to estimate the value of a home?

Appraisers base their estimates on several factors such as prior sales in the area, square footage, location, home features and upgrades. A copy of a home’s appraisal detailing the standards the appraiser used to reach his or her estimate will be provided to the buyer’s lender after the appraisal has been completed.

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Where can I find housing market statistics for my area?

Your real estate agent is the best source for local housing market statistics and information. Not only do they have access to market data through their real estate board and brokerage, they also have the experience and area knowledge to interpret and apply the statistics to your specific real estate needs.

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Where can I find information on filing a consumer complaint?

Contact the Federal Trade Commision, http://www.ftc.gov/, for more information on filing consumer complaints, including those dealing with loans and mortgages.

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