Can You Trust That the Seller and Realtor Give You All Important Information on a Home Sale?

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The answer is not entirely, at least not completely. Even though the requirements to provide you with correct and complete information before you make an offer on a property are strict, you cannot always trust that various risks associated with the purchase are adequately addressed in the sales material. Let me explain.

When you go through a sales prospectus for a property, you will find numerous papers and attachments. They are usually tucked behind the flowery descriptions of the property’s good and, in fairness, also some of its less favorable aspects. According to the Alienation Act, which regulates the sale and purchase of used homes, the seller has a duty to inform. The real estate agent, in accordance with the Real Estate Brokerage Act and the commission agreement with the seller, is obliged to assist the seller in fulfilling this duty.

On the other hand, the buyer has a duty to investigate and must familiarize themselves with everything disclosed about the property. It is assumed that they have knowledge of all the information provided before making an offer.

So far, so good, right?

But what about all the things that the buyer is responsible for understanding, whether by contacting the municipality, the housing association, or another public authority? Or aspects that the buyer is responsible for assuming the risk for? How understandable and clearly are these typically presented to the buyer, who is usually an ordinary consumer?

This can include zoning plans, construction plans on neighboring properties, maintenance plans in the housing association that affect future costs, or the possibility of getting approval for rooms not officially approved for permanent residence. The quality of this information can vary greatly. And if you ask the realtor, they often haven’t taken the trouble to properly look into these matters. It may seem as though they think that once the issue is mentioned or documents from public authorities or the housing association are attached, their job is done.

It’s not. And when understandable explanations of how the information impacts the specific property are omitted, many buyers become very uncertain. So uncertain that they hesitate to make an offer. And the uncertainty doesn’t diminish when they ask the realtor and they don’t know the answer. Of course, not everything can be answered with 100% certainty, but signaling that something is a bit uncertain can actually be an answer too!

When I, as a home purchase advisor, go through the sales material for properties my clients are considering buying, I want answers to EVERYTHING. And give them a clear picture of what risks may be present and whether there are any uncertainties they might have to live with. It involves a lot of digging, and when I don’t get answers from the realtor, I have to contact, for example, the municipality, the appraiser, the business manager, or the chairman of the housing association. Ideally, this should be unnecessary, as the realtor should have answers to EVERYTHING and have full oversight.

Why isn’t it like that?

Is it laziness, the fact that home sales have become an assembly line activity for realtors where they upload documentation into a sales system and assume the job is done? Or do they not want to answer certain things for fear of being held accountable later?

I think a lot can be attributed to poor preparation, automation of the sales process, the requirement for many and quick turnovers, and a lack of understanding of the buyer’s needs. And perhaps a bit of laziness as well—homes get sold anyway!

I don’t know the background for this phenomenon. But I do know that the clearer the answers buyers get to their questions about almost everything about and around the property, the more courage they have to make an offer on the property. And those realtors who take the trouble to fulfill their duty to inform and can answer or investigate all questions that come up are the ones who achieve the greatest credibility in the market.

Knowing that the information may be incomplete and you might not master the Norwegian language, it is safest to contact me for a review of the sales prospectus before you make an offer. Remember, in Norway, your offer is binding, and you must familiarize yourself with everything about the property in advance!



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High temperature in the housing market in Norway

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Lately, I’ve received many new inquiries for help with home purchases. Among them many people from abroad or English speakers living in Norway.

The main reason is that the housing market has come back to life and prices are rising again. With that, more people will start the home buying process. At the same time, there’s more competition for homes and quicker turnovers. In such cases, it can be nice to have some professional help and support from someone on the buyer’s side.

Here are some key figures about the housing market from April and so far this year:

  • There have been a lot of homes listed, more than at the same time in previous years except for 2021.
  • Even more homes have been sold than those listed, and the inventory of unsold homes has decreased significantly.
  • Price growth so far this year has been at 7.2%. But since there was a fall in housing prices in the fall of 2023, the 12-month growth is at 2.5%.
  • Turnover time has also decreased.
  • It is expected that many more homes will be listed leading up to the summer. Many buyers are in the market, so we can conclude that we are now in a seller’s market, albeit fairly balanced.

I’m looking forward to an active spring and early summer where I’ll have the pleasure of helping my clients find their dream homes. There’s room for more, and I look forward to hearing from you if you need a little guidance on the path to a successful home purchase.

Let us start with a non-binding digital meeting to discuss your possibilities on the Norwegian Housing Market and how I can help you with the process !

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A more stable Home Buying market in sight in Norway

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Once again, I’d like to share some exciting news with you English speakers regarding the developments in the housing market, especially in light of the sales figures for February that were released a a week ago.

There might be an excessive focus on price developments, but as a buyer, it’s important to keep an eye on prices to make an informed decision about whether to buy a property now or wait.

To address the latter first, based on the current situation, there are no indications that waiting for a price drop would be beneficial in the future if you’re looking to buy. My advice is to check the available properties and make a purchase when it suits your life situation.

We’re no longer in a buyer’s market, but the consolation is that if you have a property to sell to finance a purchase, you can be more confident that your investment might be profitable in the future.

Here are some key figures from February:

  • Housing prices rose by 1.4% nationwide.
  • Housing prices have increased by 4.9% so far this year.
  • The growth over the past 12 months has been 1.5%.
  • The average time on the market is 65 days compared to 35 days in the same month last year.
  • The inventory of unsold homes has decreased.

I’m looking forward to an exciting spring in the housing market and am eager to hear from you if you need some guidance on your journey toward a successful purchase. 

Best regards
Boligdama – Trude Larsen
+47 950 37 330



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The home buying market can turn at any time

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We find ourselves already halfway through January, with the country covered in snow and experiencing proper winter temperatures. Real estate sales are in full swing, and I’d like to share some insights I’ve gathered so far.

It seems that the housing market has gained new momentum compared to the fall. Buyers are showing greater interest, and I have even experienced bidding rounds on several of the properties my clients are interested in. Real estate agents also report increasing activity, and although they sometimes tend to be overly optimistic, there seems to be a good amount of truth in their observations.

January traditionally sees a boost in real estate market activity. Additionally, we have reached the peak of the interest rate curve, and a decrease in interest rates is expected at the next change by the Norges Bank. When in 2024 this will happen is still unclear, but it at least provides potential homebuyers with predictability when planning their home purchase.

Throughout last fall, I spoke about being in a buyer’s market. There was a good supply of homes, low demand, cautious buyers, and falling prices. Despite this, the sales volume fell due to economic uncertainty. I am very uncertain about whether this strong buyer’s market will persist, but at the same time, some of the uncertainty factors have been cleared away.

Regardless, my advice is not to wait too long for your home purchase. We expect the market to turn around in 2024, but the timing is uncertain. Experience shows that changes happen quickly when they do occur, so it might be wise to start your home search early in the year.

We need to wait for the January figures to have a clearer understanding of the market direction, but these are my best assessments so far.

I wish you a continued fantastic start to the year. Feel free to contact me for a non-binding digital meeting regarding your home purchase. Together, we can plan a strategy to make the most of the market.

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