Mortgage broker finds first home in Norcross

By Carolyn Crist

For the AJC

As a mortgage broker, Crystal Daigle felt confident when she started searching for her first home and a community to ground Blake, her 3-year-old son, before he starts elementary school.

Daigle, 29, a mortgage banker for Fidelity Bank Mortgage, talked about the three-bedroom that she and her boyfriend Jayme Brogden, 29, a network engineer for RouteMatch Software, bought in Norcross.

Q: What were you looking for in a home?

A: We wanted something on the newer side, not a fixer upper. We wanted to be in a good school district that had a decent commute — I work in Buckhead and Jayme works in Midtown. We also looked for a family-friendly, quiet neighborhood out of the hustle and bustle of the city.

Q: What was the market like?

A: It was crazy competitive. We started looking in January, and there was one property that we put an offer on that got five or six others on the same day. It was a learning experience for us.

Q: How did you move on this home?

A: When we saw the listing, we liked the look of the home from the outside, and I saw it was in a community I liked. After that, it was a no-brainer. It already had another offer, so our agent picked the seller’s brain to find out what they wanted. She learned they weren’t planning on moving immediately because they didn’t think it would sell so quickly. We put down an offer, asked for a small seller contribution and offered to close in 60 days with a 30-day leaseback so they could have three months to move. They didn’t even counter.

Q: What did you love about the house?

A: We have a unit at the end of the street where our son can go outside and ride his bike. We also like the brick look and the two-car garage. In addition, the sellers created built-in bookcases in the living room and upstairs, which are lovely.

Q: What was the relationship with your agent?

A: Susan Renno and Collette McDonald (with RE/MAX Around Atlanta) were so professional. They were there when we needed them. Gwinnett County wasn’t on our radar initially, but Susan had grown up there and was able to point out the great aspects that aren’t well-known, such as the downtown (Norcross) area and farmer’s market.

Q: What’s a tip for first-time buyers?

A: Stay on top of the loan situation. That’s going to make or break how stressful the entire process will be. You’re not just putting a paper in a machine to spit out a loan. You have so many parties involved in the mortgage process — buyers, sellers, agents, lenders — and staying on top of everything is key.

At a Glance

Crystal Daigle and Jayme Brogden’s townhome, built in 2008, has three bedrooms, two-and-a-half bathrooms and 1,900 square feet. Townhomes in the Berkeley Chase neighborhood in Norcross range from the low to high $200,000s.