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Pittsburgh Home Buyers

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How do I tell my kids we're moving to Pittsburgh?

A: Make it an adventure and put the most positive spin on it as possible.

This has always worked for us - even when going to the dentist!

Make sure you encourage questions and answer them as truthfully and in as positive a way as possible.

Q: How can I make moving to Pittsburgh less stressful on my children?

A: Moving away from their familiar environment can be difficult for children.

But there are ways to ease their fears and concerns. Request a copy of our special report entitled, "Making Your Move Easier for Kids." Following this sage advice should help alleviate most, if not all, of your child's anxieties about your move to the Pittsburgh area.

Q: My child is starting to rebel because of our upcoming relocation to Pittsburgh. What can I do?

A: Many children act out when they feel they have no control.

Help your child feel like he/she is part of the process. Encourage them to pack their things. Let them decorate their room at the new house. Have them keep in touch with their old friends. Doing these things and making the move a positive experience will help your child feel better about moving to a new Pittsburgh community. And in doing so, it should get them acting like their old selves again.

Q: My child is very shy. How can I help him make friends in our new Pittsburgh community?

A: Everyone loves a party, right?!

So have a welcome party and invite all the neighborhood children that they will most likely be seeing school, too. This way, your child will have a head start and get to know his neighbors and have fun too.

Get him involved in a community sport or other activity so he/she has the opportunity to meet kids his/her own age who share the same interests.

Q: Is there a better time to move to Pittsburgh than another?

A: The best answer is: When it's most convenient for you.

But if you have a choice and you have children, moving is easiest for them during a school break, preferably during the summer and before school starts. This way they start the grade with all the rest of the kids.

Q: Do you have any suggestions to prevent problems when we move to the Pittsburgh area?

A: Yes. Prepare a checklist of things you will need in your new Pittsburgh home before your furnishings arrive. This will help alleviate unnecessary stress.

Research moving companies. Check their references and ask referrals how their experience was.

Exercise. Everyone knows that a little exercise will help relieve tension and help you relax.

Reach out and touch someone. Call friends and family for any words of wisdom they might be able to provide. If nothing else, their support will make you feel better.

Q: What do I need to do before I think about purchasing Pittsburgh real estate?

A: Get Your Finances in Order

Often when people are considering buying a home, whether it be a first time investment or another home, they believe they can just puchase one like buying a new item for a kitchen. That is not usually the case. Here are some things you should do before you buy a home.

Check with a lender to see what you qualify for.

You should know facts such as:

  • o Annual Income
  • o Amount of Cash you have for a down payment*
  • o Other Home Loans
  • o Credit Card Balances
  • o Other Loan Balances (Vehicles, etc.)
  • o School Loans
  • o Other factors affecting your income e.g. child support, tax payments, dividends, etc.

*Note: Some first time home buyer loan programs do not require a down payment.

Q: Do I need to be pre-qualified?

A: It is generally a good idea to get pre-qualified.

Many Pittsburgh sellers require a pre-qualification letter with your offer to purchase. So you should have that readily available when it comes time to make an offer. In general, it will make your offer look stronger.

Q: What is the cost of pre-qualification?

A: There is no cost associated with getting pre-qualified.

Q: What is pre-qualification?

A: Pre-qualification is where you have spoken to a lender about a possible home loan.

This is when you have spoken to a lender, usually over the phone. You will provide him with the information described above. They in turn will give you an estimate of what they believe you would qualify for if all the information you have given them is accurate.


People often think because they are pre-qualified they can get the loan when they find the home of their dreams. That is not true. At this point in the loan process they have not run a credit check, or verified any of the information you have provided. There may be things on your credit report that are inaccurate or that you have forgotten about that may inhibit the loan process, or affect the loan amount.

Q: If I find a Pittsburgh area home that is not listed by YOUR realty company, can you still show it to me?

A: Yes

I am able to show you ANY home, new or resale, no matter who the listing broker is.

If you see a home advertised in the newspaper, or if you drive by a home that interests you, please call me! If you visit an open house or a new Pittsburgh home community, please tell the seller's agent in the home that I am representing you.

Remember, Pittsburgh home information is always available to me, even if it is not a Jim Dolanch listing.

Q: When we find a Pittsburgh house we like, how do we go about purchasing it?

A: It is a many step process, here is a brief overview of the process

You will need an earnest money check to accompany the offer to purchase. This may be in the form of a personal check, or in some cases a certified check. A minimum of 1% of the sales price is deemed adequate in most cases. When your written offer to purchase is presented to the seller, he has three choices:

  1. He can accept your offer
  2. He can reject your offer.
  3. He can make a counteroffer.

Negotiations after the initial written offer are conducted verbally until an agreement is reached. When the seller accepts your offer, or you accept his counteroffer in writing, you have a binding contract for sale on that property. Your earnest money will be deposited in the listing broker's trust account to be held until closing.

Q: Is it best to make a really low offer at first?

A: If your offer is too low you may take some unwanted risks.

It is important to remember that if you make a low offer on a home and the offer is rejected or countered, another prospective buyer may submit an offer that may be accepted by the seller before you have the opportunity to submit another offer or accept the seller's counter to your offer. I have even heard of experiences where a buyer made such a low offer to the seller, the seller was insulted and refused to entertain any more offers from that client.

Q: Would it be in my best interest to work with several Pittsburgh realtors and not just one?

A: It is in YOUR best interest to work exclusively with me.

I have access to every home that is on the Pennsylvania MLS (Multiple Listing Service).

I am self-employed, not on an expense account, and will be paid only when I find the right home for you.

Your loyalty is appreciated, and in return, you will receive the maximum in service from me and my team.

All of my time and professional advice, experience, and assistance is FREE to you!

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