I work with a lot of first time buyers, and many call me because a friend referred them. They know they’re supposed to use a real estate agent, but often they don’t know why they should. Or they have preconceptions about what their agent should or shouldn’t do for them. They usually have watched a lot of HGTV and are surprised they can see more than three places, and that the offer paperwork is not done on the hood of the car. So why use me when searching for a property? And what exactly do I do for you?
First, buyers don’t pay their buyer’s agent anything. The way it works is that the seller pays the listing brokerage a commission, and the listing agent agrees to share part of that commission with the buyer’s brokerage. A good real estate agent does more than take buyers around to see properties and write up the offer paperwork. A buyer’s agent should be familiar with neighborhoods and what they offer, the various neighborhood amenities, what new developments are planned nearby, a bit of the history of the area, what materials are used in the house, etc.
While not a home inspector, I will often point out obvious defects of a property that a buyer might not notice when touring a property. While buyers are focused on the kitchen and how nice, or not, it is, I'm looking around for things like water stains on the ceiling, for signs of previous flooding in the basement or pointing out asbestos flooring tiles, for example. As a agent, I see hundreds of properties each year and I'm good at comparing properties’ pros and cons.
Once buyers have identified a property to put a bid on, I'm going to help with determining the offer price by looking at past sales in the area. I don't want you paying any more than you should and knowing the market helps me determine that amount.
Just because we're under contract, that doesn't mean my job is over. As soon as the offer is accepted I make sure that a copy of the ratified contract and earnest money deposit gets to the closing attorney.
I also work with the buyer to ensure the home inspection is scheduled, and I attend the home inspection with the buyer. Usually the home inspection results in another round of negotiations regarding repairs and/or a credit for repairs, and I guide the buyer through the best strategy to get the desired results.
After the home inspection, my role is to stay on top of the various parties involved in the transaction to ensure that each party is doing what’s needed to get to closing. I stay in regular contact with the title company, the buyer’s lender and seller’s agent to make sure any hiccups in the process are smoothed out before they become disasters.
Not a bad deal considering that a buyer gets all that for free! Want me to work for you? Give me a call.