You’re DIYing this real estate thing, and you think you’re doing pretty well—after all, any info you might need is at your fingertips online, right? That and your own sterling judgment.
Dear home buyer (or seller!)—I know you can do it on your own. But you really, really shouldn’t. This is likely the biggest financial decision of your entire life, and you need a Realtor® if you want to do it right. Here’s why:
Buyer Agents: Working for You Free of Charge
Home buyers should always have their own agent. Buyer agents work to negotiate the best terms and price for the buyer. Best of all, the buyer agent’s services are free to the buyer.
Most people think they have to pay a sales commission. The truth is this: only the seller pays the commission.
Whether a buyer uses an agent or not, the seller still pays the commission. The only person that wins when buyers are not represented is the listing agent.
Most buyer agents will have their clients sign an agency agreement, an Exclusive Buyer Agency Agreement. It outlines their services, how they are compensated, and how the two parties will work together.
Remember, you wouldn’t hire your spouse’s attorney to represent you in your divorce. The same goes for real estate. Why use the seller’s agent to negotiate your best interest? There is an inherent conflict of interest.
The home buying process is stressful enough without worrying about who you can and cannot trust. Your buyer’s agent is your trusted advocate.
They have bullish negotiating chops
Any time you buy or sell a home, you’re going to encounter negotiations—and as today’s housing market heats up, those negotiations are more likely than ever to get a little heated.
You can expect lots of competition, cutthroat tactics, cash offers, and bidding wars. Don’t you want a savvy and professional negotiator on your side to seal the best deal for you?
And it’s not just about how much money you end up spending. A Realtor will help draw up a purchase agreement that allows enough time for inspections, contingencies, and anything else that’s crucial to your particular needs.
Realtors might not know everything,
but they make it their mission to know just about everyone who can possibly help in the process of buying or selling a home. Mortgage brokers, real estate attorneys, home inspectors, home stagers, interior designers—the list goes on
They adhere to a strict code of ethics
Not every real estate agent is a Realtor, who is a licensed real estate salesperson who belongs to the National Association of Realtors®, the largest trade group in the country.
What difference does it make? Realtors are held to a higher ethical standard than licensed agents and must adhere to a Code of Ethics.