FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS, BY TOPIC
About the Rebate:
Q. How do I receive my rebate?
A. Please be sure to notify HomeBenefitsPlus when you have an accepted
offer. Once we have the details of your transaction, we will confer with your
lender. Your lender will give us permission and instruct us on how you are to
receive your rebate, whether as a line item credit on your HUD Settlement
Statement, or as a check after closing.
Q. Do I get my rebate check from my agent?
A. No. If you are receiving your rebate by check, it will be mailed to
you from HomeBenefitsPlus’ office.
Q. Which States prohibit rebates to clients?
A. Although laws are changing continually, as of January 2011, the
following states prohibit rebates to clients: Alaska, Alabama, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Tennessee. The U.S.
Department of Justice tracks the states that prohibit rebates. Go to http://www.justice.gov/atr/public/real_estate/rebates-details.html for more information.
Q. I am already working with a real estate
agent. Can I still get a 25% rebate from HomeBenefitsPlus?
A. No. You may not contact a Realtor® directly. You must contact
HomeBenefitsPlus to be assigned to a participating real estate agent. If you are
already in contact with an agent, you are not eligible to receive the 25%
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Agents and Brokers:
Q. What kinds of agents does HomeBenefitsPlus
A. HomeBenefitsPlus works with experienced real estate agents that
have a proven track record in customer
Q. Does HomeBenefitsPlus work with discount or
“a la carte” Real Estate brokers?
A. No. You will be assigned a full service professional real estate
agent. Your agent will provide you current market values, negotiate on your
behalf, give you suggestions on how to present your home for sale, locate the
home you are looking for, and generally provide everything you need for your
real estate experience.
know an agent that might meet HomeBenefitsPlus’ criteria. How can they
A. We welcome qualified,
experienced Realtors® who like to work in a collaborative and communicative
manner, and who understand the importance of supporting the Credit Union as
the mortgage lender. Interested Realtors® should contact us. We
will review our exact requirements with them. If
you know of an agent, and would like us to initiate contact with them, just
get us their contact information, and we will follow up.
Q. What if I don’t like the agent assigned to
me? Can I make a change?
A. Yes, as long as no contracts have been signed or properties viewed.
Just contact your HBP Counselor within two weeks of your initial contact with
HomeBenefitsPlus to request a change in agent. It is very important to us
that you are happy with your real estate agent. Even if it has been more than
2 weeks, please contact HomeBenefitsPlus to give us your feedback. If you
haven’t actively worked with the first agent, we may be able to reassign you.
HomeBenefitsPlus still get me an agent in a state that prohibits rebates?
A. Yes, HomeBenefitsPlus
Counselors are available to discuss your housing needs and carefully match
you with an experienced agent to assist you.
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Q. What if I want to sell my house and then
buy another? Can I get the 25% rebate on both transactions?
A. Yes! Call the Home Benefits Plus toll free number (888-603.9563) or click
here to get started. You may receive a rebate of 25% of the
commission on your side of each transaction. Typically, the seller pays the
commission to both the agent representing the seller and the agent
representing the buyer. As a seller, we can offer you the 25% rebate on the
commission paid to your agent for representing you in the sale of your home.
When you buy, you may receive the 25% rebate on the commission paid to your
agent for representing you in the purchase of your home. All rebates are
contingent upon receiving your lender’s permission and subject to law.
Q. I’ve heard that I should interview several
agents when listing my home for sale. Can this be done with the
will be happy to arrange for you to interview several participating agents
regarding the sale of your home. Each agent will make an appointment with you
to make a listing presentation, including a marketing plan, comparable
properties, suggested list price and likely sales price. You can let your
HomeBenefisPlus Counselor know which agent you wish to work with. We can
communicate your decision to the agents who were not selected.
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When should I contact my Credit Union to start my Mortgage Loan Application?
should contact your Credit Union to start your Mortgage Loan Application at
your earliest convenience. You will not be able to make an offer on a
property without a pre-approval letter. Having your pre-approval in place
will help you know what housing budget you are comfortable with. It will also
help your real estate agent know what housing to show you.
Does it make any difference what kind of mortgage I use to purchase?
it does. FHA loans have a maximum amount of credits that a buyer can receive.
If you receive too many credits from the seller, HomeBenefitsPlus may not be
able to pay you your rebate. Please be aware of this when structuring your
purchase offer. Go to http://www.hud.gov/buying/loans.cfm or contact your HBP
Counselor for more information.
Does the Veterans’ Administration allow the HomeBenefitsPlus rebate?
The Department of Veterans’ Affairs allows a rebate to the buyer as a credit
in the transaction if its underwriting requirements are met. A cash payment
to the buyer is not allowed.
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HomeBenefitsPlus help me buy a home offered For Sale By Owner (FSBO) or
For Sale By Owner (FSBO) and auction properties do not offer any compensation
for an agent to represent you. HomeBenefitsPlus is not able to offer you an
agent without compensating that agent.
What about foreclosure properties?
HomeBenefitsPlus agents can help you purchase any residential property that
is offered for sale through the Multiple Listing System (MLS). Many
foreclosed properties are listed for sale through the MLS. These properties
are called “Real Estate Owned” by the lender, or REO’s.
What are short-sale properties, and can my HomeBenefitsPlus agent assist me
in buying one?
your HomeBenefitsPlus agent can represent you in purchasing a short-sale
property offered through the Multiple Listing Service, or MLS. You should be
aware that buying a short-sale property may take longer and be more
complicated than purchasing a traditional re-sale property. That is because
the Seller, who is asking their mortgage lender to accept less money than
owed, has to obtain their lender’s approval for the sale. In many cases,
there is more than one lender. Each lender must agree. It can be a lengthy
and uncertain process.
Q. Can a
HomeBenefitsPlus agent represent me in purchasing a newly built home?
A. It Depends.
Some homebuilders offer a cooperating real estate agent commission on a
purchase transaction with the real estate agent representing a buyer of a newly
constructed home. It is important that when you make initial contact with a
builder, you let them know that you have a real estate agent you are working
with. For best results, contact HomeBenefitsPlus before signing into any guest
books or interest lists.
Q. I’ve heard that
going to Open Houses is a great way to familiarize myself with properties for
sale. Is this true?
A. Although going
to Open Houses can be a good way to learn about the housing offered for sale in
your area of interest, be sure to let the real estate agent hosting the event
know that you have a real estate agent representing you. This is important to
protect your rebate.
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About the Program – General Information:
if my Credit Union is not working with HomeBenefitsPlus? May I still use the
Please contact us. We will contact your Credit Union and provide them the
information about HomeBenefitsPlus. We will ask them to allow you to receive
the rebate, and we’ll match you with a great real estate agent to assist you.
Your mortgage lender has the final say on whether you may receive the rebate.
Q. How do I get started in the HomeBenefitsPlus
A. To get started, just call the toll free number, (888) 603-9563 or click
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