1. It’s Free to the Buyer!
Why not have the extra help of a professional and for free?
2. More Negotiating Power
Buyer’s agents negotiate as their profession. Trying to go at it alone (even if you are good at negotiating), doesn’t mean it’s in your best interest. Often times the buyer’s agent knows the right questions to ask to the listing agent. As the buyer, the listing agent cannot share things about the buyer without violating a code of ethics. Often times, your buyer’s agent will know what sort of questions to ask to get the information they need. They also know how to decipher what a vague answer really means. It’s realtor code, and that is something you do not have experience with unless you have been a realtor yourself. Lastly, experienced agents often know how to get creative in negotiations when the seller is digging their heels in but are only a few thousand dollars apart from the buyer’s max.
3. Access to all MLS listings AND listings not made public
Agents often know of new listings coming up that are not yet on the market. Wouldn’t you want to be the first one to have a crack at a home perfect for you before it hits the MLS and is open to the public for offers?
4. A buyer’s agent will know what red flags to look out for
This can be in contracts, counter-offers, negotiations, etc.
5. They understand the local market, neighborhoods, builders,etc.
This not only helps in finding your home, but also when it comes time to make an offer. Your agent will be able to provide comparable sales in the area to ensure you don’t pay too much for your next home or are submitting a realistic bid.
6. They can help manage expectations
Home buying is a very emotional process. The buyers agent is not only there to keep the buyer’s feet on the ground, but also to let them know what to expect each step of the way. They know the deadlines for each item in the contract, and can help to keep everyone on schedule. Knowing what is happening next helps the entire process go more smoothly.
7. They know how to read and write contracts
They also know what forms and addenda are needed to keep from any issues popping up during the contract period.
8. Saves you valuable time
Let’s face it. You have a very busy life to live. Buyers agents search for homes as their profession. They have more ways to help you find your home than you have at your fingertips.
- More resources available to the buyer’s agent – Buyer’s agents spend hours scouring MLS, maps, inventories, unlisted listings, tapping into expired listings, seller’s who haven’t quite decided to list yet, and using their professional network to get you the most options in finding the right home. Why not have extra help in finding that perfect home?
- The Open House Crawl – Taking weekends to visit hundreds of open houses weekend after weekend is time consuming. Sometimes you stray into a home just because it had an open house sign, and it turns out to not be what you were looking for anyway. What a waste of your precious time. Also, not every home that’s listed has an open house. Some of them even sell before the open house can be held. If you find a home you might like, but you have to wait until you see next week’s open houses to decide, you could lose out on that house because you waited too long. Which brings me to my next point:
- Buyer’s agents increase your access to seeing listings in a timelier manner so you don’t lose out – It’s your agent’s job to schedule showings for you in time blocks. It’s so much faster to see all of the homes at once instead of waiting for each of them to have an open house. You want to be the first to see these homes to have the most leverage. This way you have the opportunity to compare properties right away, and move more quickly if you find the house you like.
9. Access to a huge professional network of vendors:
To help you from start to finish, such as starting with tried-and-trusted lenders, closing agents and attorneys, handymen, inspectors, painters, property managers, contractors, etc. The list goes on.
10. They look out for YOUR best interest.
- Together you are a team. Your buyer’s agent is there to make sure you are taken care of, and your best interests are looked out for. I recently had a buyer that was ready to make a full price offer on a home that had been sitting on the market for for almost 2 years at the same price. She had no idea about any of this because Zillow didn’t tell her. The listing agent for this particular home took it off the market temporarily to let the days on market reset to the public when it was relisted. I was able to warn my buyer that this listing was very overpriced for the neighborhood, and that the seller was not flexible with price, as I had already experienced. This saved my buyer from making a costly mistake.
- Going straight to the listing agent would have cost my buyer over $20,000. The listing agent is there to sell the home, not look out for the buyer’s best interests. She would have let my buyer write a full-price offer immediately. The listing agent is not there to tell you why it might not be a good investment for you. They are there to sell the home, and if you are willing to overpay, they are not going to stop you. Also they ethically cannot disclose anything that about the seller that would put them at a disadvantage in negotiations, and they cannot advise on price. Because Florida is a no dual-agency state, that listing agent CANNOT represent you. They can only broker the deal, and there you are all alone with no one to look out for you.
11. Better deals on new construction then you can get on your own.
- Most buyers think they don’t need a buyer’s agent here. This is where they are dreadfully wrong. The new home sales consultant works for the BUILDER and is representing the builder’s best interest NOT yours. You need a buyer’s agent to be looking out for your best interests and bottom line.
- Often the buyer’s agent has had experience negotiating with these builders for other clients, and therefore know the ins-and-outs of what the builder is willing to give into. The buyer negotiating on their own doesn’t know how low of a price Jimmy got his new house for a month ago. The buyer’s agent does, and can put even more pressure on the new home consultant to make the numbers work in your favor to get the house you want.