Many aspects of buying real estate have changed dramatically over the past 10 years. The most notable of which is how we search for properties and how much information is available about the properties we find. Google reports that internet searches for real estate is up over 243% in the past two years.

However, this wealth of information has not made purchasing your dream home less complicated.

Alabama is one of the few remaining states that employs the "Caveat emptor" rule. "buyer beware". All properties with the exception of new construction are sold as is and the seller or the friendly listing agent who's sign is in the front yard is not required to tell you, the buyer, anything about the property that does not directly constitute a safety or health risk.

The purpose of this book is to give you a basic working knowledge of what needs to be done, who is responsible for doing it and when it has to be done by. I am a real estate broker and have spent a large portion of my professional life promoting for sale by owner, however the more I learn the more I appreciate the expertise brought to the table by an experienced real estate agent. Your agent's responsibility goes beyond finding you the perfect home, their primary purpose is to protect you and your money when something goes wrong.

Listing agents assist sellers in marketing their property and selling it for the highest possible price under the best terms.

Buyer's agents assist buyers by helping them purchase property for the lowest possible price under the best terms. Although buyers agents represent the buyer and have fiduciary responsibility to the purchaser they are paid by the listing agent.