Why Should You Hire A Buyer’s Agent?

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014
Christina Esala

Why hire a buyer’s agent when buying a home in Tucson, AZ? I’ll tell you 5 reasons it’s imperitive to have someone on your side when purchasing a home, and the 5 items to watch out for when using a buyer’s agent.

#1- A Buyer’s Agent usually costs you nothing. The seller pays the brokers for selling their home. This includes paying YOUR agent to represent YOU. Sound too good to be true? It’s NOT! Each listing in the Tucson MLS shows a CO-OP fee, which will tell you how much money your agent’s broker will be paid at the closing table. What should I watch out for? Check the employment agreement between you and your Real Estate Broker. If the co-op fee is less than the amount you agreed to on your employment agreement, you will then have to pay the difference at the closing table. The good thing is, your agent may be able to stipulate in the contract that the seller pay the difference of the co-op fee and the employment agreement during contract negotiations.

#2- A Buyer’s Agent will know the market and share it with you. A buyer’s agent can let you into each home that is listed on the Tucson MLS. A common misconception is that you have to call each listing agent to see homes. That is NOT TRUE! Any license real estate agent can show you any home on the market. Your buyer’s agent will send you available properties based on your wants and needs, and can tell you approximately how much that house is worth by pulling comparable sales in the area. What should I watch out for? Make sure your agent DOES give you “comps” for the homes that you are looking for to make sure you are not overpaying when offering on a property.

#3- A Buyer’s Agent will Negotiate the terms of your contract. Your buyer’s agent should be able to negotiate on your behalf with the seller’s agent the terms of the contract that best suit your needs. Terms of a contract that can be negotiated include, but are not limited to contract price, date of closing, amount of concessions paid for by the seller on the buyer’s behalf, repairs, inspection fees, home warranty plan, and earnest money amount. What should I watch out for? Make sure that your buyers agent is skilled in the negotiations arena. Some agents may have letters after their names that will specify whether or not they have completed educational training on negotiations like CNE (Certified Negotiations Expert) or MCNE (Master Certified Negotiations Expert). Choose your agent carefully according to your needs.

#4- A Buyer’s Agent will work for you only. Picture this… You see a home you like while taking a family stroll. You call the phone number on the sign and the listing agent answers the phone. You ask them to show it to you and make the next available appointment. You LOVE the home! You WANT it! You make an offer to the listing agent. Answer this… Who is the listing agent representing, YOU or the SELLER? This predicament can be tricky. A skilled agent can act on behalf of both the buyer and seller. This is not necessarily the best way to buy a home though. Wouldn’t you want to have an agent that has YOUR interests only and can negotiate the best deal for you based on your needs, not based on the ALL the need of both parties? What should I watch out for? Make sure to call your own agent. If you choose not to do so, you will need to sign an agreement called a CONSENT TO LIMITED REPRESENTATION. The title alone should warn you. LIMITED representation. When purchasing a home, who wants to be limited? The SKY is the limit when you hire your own agent. Please note that in no way am I saying you cannot use one agent for the seller and the buyer. I just don’t recommend it.

#5- A Buyer’s Agent Knows the way from point A to point B in a transaction. A buyer’s agent will walk you through the steps from the beginning to end. Point A will start with finding the right mortgage lender or figuring out where your cash will come from to purchase. The agent can recommend lenders if you don’t know of one. From there, your agent will send you available listings and show you the homes you are interested in viewing. You will make an offer through your agent. Your agent will walk you through all the necessary inspections and guide you through through the contractual process. Your agent will explain the closing process, set up your signing appointment, and much much more! Lastly, your buyer’s agent will give you the KEYS TO YOUR HOME!!! What should I watch out for? You should always interview a few agents before you choose the agent that is right for you. Find an agent that you are comfortable with. Look online for reviews for that agent, then stick to that one agent.