For the same reasons you use and acquire the services of any professional – to help you find, process and finish what is a big investment on your part. The process must be smooth and enjoyable throughout.
There are two primary jobs in buyer representation:
- Assuring that the buyer-client pays the right price.
- Protecting the buyer-client from major problems with their purchase.
Buyers have a right to be represented by their own real estate agent, who becomes their buyer representative. The buyer’s representative has an obligation not to disclose information about the buyer-client’s financial strength, motivation level, and negotiating strategy. In other words, the buyer’s agent has the same fiduciary duties to them that a listing agent has to the seller, including confidentiality, loyalty, competent care, and disclosure.
- Counsel you in agency representation options.
- Help you to understand financing and determine how much house you can afford.
- Help you find the right lender for you and your circumstances.
- Consider all your home requirements and desires and help you fit them into your budget.
- Guide you to a good investment (including re-sale and life expectancy of a home).
- Protect you from the helpless feeling of finding out you have major problems after the purchase.
- Give you impartial information on inspectors (they are not all the same!).
- Guide you to competent information on termites: 1)if they show up what do you do? 2)where do they go?
- Help you understand an escrow account, how it operates and what is your responsibility.
- Explain current property taxes and what you should know about them.
- Help you handle problems with a survey.
- Deal with the pressures that come with a home purchase.
- Advise you about environmental and other hazards.
- Guide you to a good objective decision (excitement and emotions run high at a time like this!).
A buyer’s representative is responsible for protecting the buyer’s best interests. Research by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® has shown that when a buyer’s representative is used, the prospective buyer found a home one week faster and examined three more properties than consumers who did not use a buyer’s representative.
The truth about Real Estate Agents
1 An Agent’s company does not provide expense accounts, car allowances, advertising budgets or any other sort of financial remuneration. Real estate agents are on straight commission. So please remember, when an agent takes you out to show you homes; it is their gas, their vehicle and most importantly – their time and expertise from which you are benefiting. Please reward their investment in you by being loyal when it comes time to purchase your home.
2 An agent can assist you in a purchase of virtually any home – resale or new, another company’s listing or For-Sale-By-Owner.
3 If you walk into an open house or new home model unaccompanied by your agent, please inform the salesperson that you are working with an agent. Better yet, have a supply of your agent’s cards handy so that you can present them to the on-site agent. This protects your agent and also facilitates clear communication.
4 There is a myth that real estate agents earn a “standard 6% commission” when they sell a home. There is no such thing as a “standard commission” – commissions vary from property to property. Any commission is usually split 4 ways. One half of that commission goes to the listing company. The listing company then splits this part of the commission with their listing agent. The other half of the commission goes to the company of the selling agent (the agent who is working with the buyer). The company then splits this half of the commission with the selling agent.
5 Referral business is critical to a real estate agent. If you are pleased with the manner in which your real estate business is handled, please refer any potential buyers or sellers to your agent.