Over 92% of today’s buyers use the internet to preview homes before viewing them. With so much access to online showings, many sellers are using the Seller’s agent to view and negotiate their favorite properties. Real Estate Expert Erica Rose Siegel and Home Staging Expert Tori Toth discuss why you should have a buyer’s agent if you are purchasing a new home.
On a personal level, I’m very passionate about this. Having worked in a real estate office prior to becoming a home stager, and having a real estate license in SC, I’ve seen this work to the incredible disadvantage to far too many buyers. The worst thing is that they don’t even know it is happening. This is extremely common in new construction, where buyers walk into a new construction office and begin picking out their new home with the representative of the seller, in this case, the builder.
Think about it. You are making the largest investment of your life and the seller is paying for your representation. Why should you ever leave it up to the agent who is hired by the seller? While most of the time, a good agent, will try to fairly represent you when purchasing a home, it is actually their fiduciary responsibility to give every shred of information about you, the buyer, to their client that they can find out. They cannot represent you equally – it’s actually against the rules in most states. If the seller finds out that their agent left information on the table that could have helped them in negotiations and presses the issue, the agent could be fined thousands of dollars or even lose their license.
Contrary to the belief of many buyers, not having representation will not get you a better deal. Before you ever came along the listing agent created a contract with the seller that allowed for a certain commission rate at the sale of the home. This commission is to be split with the listing agent and the buyer’s agent. If the listing agent gets the buyer, they collect the entire amount.
Always have an exclusive buyer’s agent agreement with a competent agent who works with the type of home you are buying (new construction, historic, covenant restricted, etc). They will help you phrase your contingencies, know who the best inspectors are, or understand other small issues that could become big ones. Since the seller is already paying for this service, you should take advantage of it.
Just catching the series? Be sure to check out past episodes:
Watch Realtor Meets Stager, Episode 1, an introduction.
Episode 3, Realtor Meets Stager, Expired listings part 1
Episode 4, Realtor Meets Stager, Expired listings part 2