Buying a home should be an incredibly memorable event. However, seasoned buyers know something that most first-time home buyers do not – the process is much more complicated than it seems. Finding and utilizing a Buyer’s Agent is arguably the best decision a first-time homeowner can make. Even veteran home buyers can benefit from a Buyer’s Agent. Markets and laws can change very quickly, so having someone who is required to stay up-to-date is invaluable.
What is a Buyer’s Agent?
A Buyer’s Agent is a licensed real estate agent that is working for you, the buyer. Typically, all agents involved in the sale of a house are working for the seller. Finding an agent that will only represent your best interests will make the home-buying process smoother and more manageable. There are several things that a Buyer’s Agent can do for a buyer.
A good Buyer’s Agent can not only help you find your perfect property, they can also help negotiate the offer. With your best interest in mind, they will not disclose that you need to move in a hurry, or that out of every house you looked at, this is your absolute dream house. If a Seller’s Agent had that information, they may be able to use it to benefit the seller, by advising them not to accept any lower offers.
Buyer’s Agents can also recommend other professionals throughout the purchasing process. Home inspectors, mortgage brokers, even lawn care services may have a relationship with your agent and your agent may be willing to vouch for their quality of service. Because the home-buying process is not always linear, a Buyer’s Agent can also help to overcome any unexpected issues or setbacks.
What is an Exclusive Buyer’s Agent?
An Exclusive Buyer’s Agent is an agent or company that works only for buyers and does not accept sellers as clients. Generally, a Real Estate Agent will work for a company that can represent both the seller and buyer. However, the seller will usually reap most of the benefits from a Real Estate Agent. An Exclusive Buyer’s Agent is an agent that will only work with buyers and has no other incentive than to do what is best for their client. These agents are also able to show properties from any company, as well as properties that are privately for sale. Their only client is you, the buyer.
Buyer’s Agent Contract Details to Know
There are several things to keep in mind when reviewing and signing the Buyer’s Agent Contract. The Buyer’s Agent has a fiduciary duty to consider your best interests only. Ensure that this language is present in any written agreement. Confidentiality and loyalty are two other areas to consider. If the term “dual agency agreement” appears in your contract, this is something to avoid. This generally means that the agent or their company can represent both the seller and the buyer. It can lead to a conflict of interest and finding a new agent will be in the best interest of the buyer. Ensure that the contract also details the terms of compensation, services, and length of the agreement.
Who Pays the Buyer’s Agent?
A home buyer does not need to be concerned about an additional expense of hiring an Exclusive Buyer’s Agent. The Buyer’s Agent is typically paid by the seller, because the seller pays the commission for both agents. This commission is usually paid from the proceeds of the closing costs. In addition to no cost to the buyer, there is a potential to save money as well. A good Buyer’s Agent can negotiate offers as well as contingent costs such as repairs or replacements. There is really no reason not to take advantage of the services of a Buyer’s Agent.
How to Find a Buyer’s Agent?
A quick internet search will yield several places to begin your search for a Buyer’s Agent. However, it is not recommended to sign with the first agent that you meet. It is a best practice to interview a few agents to ensure a good fit. Just because a friend or family member recommends an agent, does not mean they will be a good fit for you. Make sure you do your own research and find someone who is a good representation of you and your family. This person will be communicating on your behalf, so finding someone that you can trust is very important. This is a relationship, however short term, so communication, mutual respect, and ease of collaboration are a must.
Your real estate agent is the best source of information about the local community and real estate topics. Give Team O’Donnell a call today at 302-598-0189 to learn more about local areas, discuss selling a house, or tour available homes for sale.