Our colleague, Karen Fiddler of Orange County and Lake Arrowhead, states clearly the benefit buyers receive from working with a buyer's agent.
In a fast-moving market, having a strong relationship with an agent who works for you can make the difference in being successful or in remaining in the wings.
Do You Need A Buyer's Agent?
The Internet has changed the way we do everything. The real estate industry has changed along with it. Most buyers now start their home search online. You can find home listings, mortgage rates and even your credit report online. But while this gives you some good insight, you still need to know how to put all this information together to build a coherent plan of attack. A good buyer's agent can help you do this. And a buyer's agent represents you free of charge. Their commissions are paid by the seller.
A buyer's agent will be someone who is representing YOU and only YOU. From the very first meeting, they listen to your ideas, needs, wants and financial goals and then work with you to achieve these. They have a fiduciary duty to protect your interests and not the interest of the sellers. They will be your personal representative in the process and handle all the negotiations for you, ensuring you get the best sales price and terms possible.
A buyer's agent will bring a team of experts together to work with you depending on your needs. This might include a tax consultant, a mortgage broker, and/or a credit counselor. It will certainly involve a comprehensive discussion of your home needs. You will explore cities, size of home, community amenities, school districts, resale values...all the things that should go into an educated home purchase.
This is all the things you would expect a real estate agent to do for you....but do you know what happens after you find the perfect home.
During escrow...your buyer's agent is there for you too! They not only negotiate the price in the offer, but represent you during the escrow period too. You will have a home inspection. There might be repairs needed. This could involve a request for repairs and further negotiation. Other issues which might occur during escrow include insurance quotes, appraisal problems, and title discrepancies. All situations your buyer's agent is prepared for, and experienced in solving.
Can all problems be solved? Of course not...but your agent will have the experience and resources to guide you during the entire process. In the rare occurrence when it becomes necessary to cancel the purchase, your buyer’s agent will handle that for you as well. They have a duty to protect your financial interests in all instances and at times it becomes necessary to move on.
While the Internet offers many tools which give the consumer more information than ever before. Listings and mortgage calculators are tools which can save a buyer time and trouble, eliminating options online and maximizing their time. But using an experienced buyer’s agent will take the burden of the process off your shoulders so all you need to do is pick out the new carpet.