If you have ever asked yourself, “Do I need a buyer’s agent to buy a house?” the answer is most certainly yes. Technically and legally speaking, you aren’t “required” to have a buyer’s agent to buy a home, but here’s why you should.
What is a buyer’s agent?
A buyer’s agent is a licensed real estate broker who represents the buyer in a real estate transaction. You may have heard this referred to as a “selling agent”, which should not be confused with “seller’s agent” also known as the “listing agent”. A buyer’s agent, will act on your behalf to negotiate a Purchase and Sale Agreement with the seller’s or listing agent.
Why should I have a buyer’s agent?
This question is often asked because of the fear of additional or unknown cost. Typically both the listing and selling agents commissions are paid by the seller and are based on a percentage of the sales price. A buyer entering into a transaction without agency representation is the party with a lesser advantage.
What will a buyer’s agent do for me?
The short answer is: A LOT! But let’s go with a short list:
- Work with you to determine exactly what you can afford based upon your mortgage pre-approval.
- Work with you to decide what you are looking for in a home and prioritize those features.
- Help you narrow down the city, town and neighborhood you want to live in.
- Search for homes that fit within your parameters and take you to see them. (you can’t get into a home without an agent unless it’s an open house)
- Counsel you on what kind of offer you should make, and draft and submit that offer.
- Act quickly on your behalf to submit an offer on your desired property in the current market climate.
- Negotiate the details on your behalf, with your best interest in mind, with the listing agent to achieve mutual acceptance of your offer.
So any buyer’s agent will do?
No. Look for a top-rated, experienced agent with knowledge of the local market where you want to live. A great buyer’s agent will go above and beyond just submitting an offer. They will support you through the inspection, repair requests, appraisal, title and escrow, including being present for your signing, to ensure everything goes smoothly. Another very important asset in a buyer’s agent is finding one that is also a certified negotiation expert. Because when you are making the biggest purchase of your life, you want someone who can negotiate the best purchase for you.