One of the most important and most often skipped steps in buyer agency is the initial buyer interview. With gas at $4 per gallon, buyers don't need to see 35-40 houses spread acroos four towns in order to make a buying decision, if their agent takes the time to sit with them for a couple hours and figure out where they want to live, what kind of home they want to live in, how much they are comfortable paying and what there wants and needs are in the home they are looking to purchase. It's so tempting for agents and buyers alike to just get out in the field and go, but you have to ask yourself, why would you make the biggest purchase of your life without really thinking about the logistics of it first?
Speaking to a trusted family member, contractor or friend is not a bad idea initially, but ultimately, you with the help of your agent will be making a decision and your family and friends will only convolute the matter. Take an hour or two in a professional setting with your agent to tell them what is most important to you and then nail down a payment for your mortgage that you will be comfortable with. That will help you decide the best town for you to live in. Then together access MLS where every listing in the towns you are searching is available with all the relevant information on the property right there in front of you. Trust me, two hours in the office can save you twenty hours and a lot of heartache out there on the road.