Welcome! So, you’re ready to buy a home? Or maybe you’re ready to be ready to buy a home? You came to the right place! Rosie’s Team is here to help you get started.
Buying a home is an exciting process and truth-be-told it can be overwhelming for most people – you are not alone. That’s why the key to getting started is to find a good buyer’s agent. True to their name, buyer’s agents help real estate buyers navigate the real estate market; they can also save you much time and money on the road to your new home. Someone knowledgeable and someone who you feel comfortable with. This is the winning combination to a stress-free transaction from start to close.
What Does a Buyer’s Agent Do?
A Buyer’s Agent will guide you through the home-buying transaction and be ready to help you regarding any questions or concerns. A buyer’s agent will:
Help find the right property. After determining what their clients are looking for and what they can afford, the Buyer’s Agent will schedule appointments to tour homes. The agent can also explain the ins and outs of various properties and neighborhoods to help buyers decide which home is right for them.
Negotiate the offer.The Buyer’s Agent will advise clients on an appropriate price to offer and present it to the seller’s agent. Then they will negotiate on your behalf and write up the contracts for you. This is where the agent’s experience in negotiating deals can save you money and help you avoid pitfalls like a fixer-upper that’s more trouble than it’s worth.
Recommend other professionals.A Buyer’s Agent should also be able to refer you to reliable mortgage brokers, real estate attorneys, home inspectors, movers, and other real estate professionals. This can also help expedite each step of the process and move you to a successful real estate sale.
Help overcome setbacks.If the inspection or appraisal brings new issues to light, a Buyer’s Agent will advise you on how to proceed with the transaction, and then act as a buffer between you and the sellers or their broker. If negotiations become heated or hostile, it’s extremely helpful to have an experienced professional to keep things calm and offer productive solutions.
How Do I Find a Great Buyer’s Agent?
A good Buyer’s Agent can ease your way to homeownership—and a bad one can result in a bumpy ride.
You should not just take the first Buyer’s Agent you meet (as two-thirds of home buyers do), or blindly accept the recommendation of a friend (more than half do this). Instead, it’s best to interview at least three agents and ask them a few questions, including the following:
“What neighborhoods do you specialize in? Real estate requires local expertise, so you should find an agent who’s extremely familiar with the areas you’re interested in.”
“What’s your schedule and availability? Part-time real estate agents who are committed can do a fine job, but if the house of your dreams pops up or you encounter last-minute closing snafus, you want an agent who will be readily reachable.”
“How long have you been a real estate agent? You ideally want someone with a couple of years of experience, and a proven track record of selling homes.”
What is The Buyer’s Agent Contract?
Once you agree to work with someone, you will sign a contract called an “exclusive buyer agency agreement.” This contract gives a detailed outline of the agent’s services and compensation.
This contract also means that your Buyers Agent will be your sole representative and that you won’t work with other buyer’s agents.
How much do Buyer’s Agents cost?
Home buyers don’t need to worry about the expense of hiring a buyer’s agent. Why? Because the seller pays the commission for both the seller’s and buyer’s agents. A brokerage may charge a nominal processing fee which is paid as part of your total closing costs.
Buyer’s Agent vs. Listing Agent: What’s the difference?
Buyer’s Agents are legally bound to help buyers, whereas listing agents—the real estate agent representing the home listing—have a fiduciary duty to the home seller. Think about it this way: If you were getting sued, would you hire the same attorney as the person suing you? Of course not. You need someone who will diligently fight for your interests and rights. Let’s say, for instance, you walked up to the listing agent at an open house. You might gush about how you love the home and want to buy it, but add that you will need to move soon—because you’re expecting your second child and need to decorate the nursery, pronto, or because the lease on your rental is up in a couple of months.
A seller’s agent could then use this information against you by informing the sellers that your clock is ticking, so they shouldn’t budge too much on their asking price—if at all. On the other hand, if you make this same confession to the buyer’s agent you’re working with, and it’s all fine—this professional would know to keep this info private from sellers (and their agents), so it can’t be used against you. Some states, recognizing this problem, required a disclosure of dual agency when a broker represents both sides of a real estate transaction. However, you may still not be comfortable after signing an agreement saying you know someone is a double agent. We highly recommend you hire an agent who is not representing the owner, and who is looking out for your best interests.