The Pros And Cons Of Using A Buyer’s Agent
A helpful buyer’s agent can be worth their weight in gold. From advising you on the best offer to present the seller, to protect you from liability and ensuring your transaction runs as smoothly as possible. However, there are still some essential pros and cons that buyers should consider when deciding whether to work with a buyers agent.
You Have a Professional Working on Your Behalf
Buyer’s agents are licensed professionals who have a deep understanding of the real estate market. An experienced real estate professional can not only answer any questions you may have about potential homes and the sales process, but they can also negotiate on your behalf with the seller to secure you the best deal possible.
The seller’s agent has their clients best interests in mind, which means that their goal is to secure the highest sales price possible — this means more money out of your pocket. Having an agent work on your behalf can help buffer you and ensure that you don’t pay over the properties market value.
Avoid Real Estate Pitfalls
There are plenty of mistakes buyers can make when purchasing real estate. From offering a sales price that’s too high, to not adequately negotiating with the seller for needed repairs, all buyers could benefit from some professional advice.
An experienced local real estate agent can advise you on the best areas to look for property, including ones that are up and coming with increasing real estate values. They can also help you navigate the inspection period if any previously unknown defects arise, and you need to go back to the negotiating table.
Some Buyer’s Agents Require Contracts
Although the particulars vary by state, some buyers agents require their clients to sign an exclusive buyers contract. It’s important not to sign any agreements with a buyer’s agent unless you are entirely happy with them working on your behalf.
The buyer’s contract helps to give peace of mind to your agent that they will receive compensation for their work, and that you will work with them exclusively. It also helps ensure that they can work with for-sale-by-owner (FSBO) properties on your behalf, and also any “pocket listings” they might have.
The buyer’s contract should stipulate the agent’s responsibilities and what you should expect from them during your working relationship.
You Pay the Buyer’s Agents Commission
When a homeowner negotiates their listing agreement with their listing agent, they also negotiate the total sales commission. The sales commission is typically split equally between the listing agent and the buyer’s agent — and this is paid as part of the sellers closing costs.
Properties entered into the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), clearly show the commission on offer for buyer’s agents, and your agent will take this as payment directly from the seller. This means that buyers pay nothing upfront for representation. It should be noted, however, that some sellers may price their homes to reflect the agent’s commission, and therefore the figure may be rolled into the final sales price.