Our house hunting started well before we sold a business that was keeping us in our old location. We had ample time to search. The only thing we knew was the general area that held our interest. We had no experience with Tony, and little experience with the basic area for which we wished to relocate. This area was several hundred miles away. With plenty of time, and little experience, whoever became our Agent was going to be tested. There were many phone calls and many scouting trips, mostly at odd times, with short notice, and spanning a period of nearly 7 months. Without a rush we could look at straight sales, plus REO's and foreclosures. We looked at them all. The market was very active and properties were coming and going quite quickly. The area we chose is full of specific rules and guidelines not common to most areas. All of the rules are important to those moving here, so being educated beyond the simple home purchase is necessary.
Our luck held out. Our business sold. Our old home too. But the luckiest thing of all was finding Tony Tuoto. His patience and expertise allowed me all the time I needed, while also using that time wisely. The location we chose is full of custom homes, and therefore each house is quite different from the rest - some radically. In such an atmosphere you need to have your priorities straight. Tony kept us on track, on budget, and on time. He ushered us through short sale negotiations. He looked at several properties without us present and reported back - pictures included. He spent time asking questions to best identify our desires, and wasn't afraid to tell us when our expectations were too high. And his post-purchase assistance was equally as important as the purchase itself.
Full disclosure - Tony Tuoto is now my Friend. But first he was a Real Estate Agent that I blindly contacted, and who ultimately handled a huge portion of my family's relocation. Our current friendship says a lot about our past business interaction. If you're in need of real estate representation, buying or selling, Tony Tuoto is where you start. And in the end be prepared to have another friend.