With multiple on-line search engines at your fingertips, why work with a realtor when buying a home or investment property? Why not look at properties on your own and try to cut a deal with the selling broker? In fact, what does a buying broker do for you that you can’t do for yourself?
Excellent questions! If you are thinking this way, I applaud your acumen and independent spirit. I do believe that an experienced, conscientious realtor can indeed improve your home-buying experience, especially if you are a first time home-buyer or investor. Here’s how:
With multiple on line search engines at your fingertips, why work with a realtor when buying a home?
In a hot market, search engines are often several days behind. This can lead to frequent disappointments as you jump on a listing that just appeared, only to find out an offer was made–and accepted–two days ago.
A realtor can keep you up-to-the-minute so you don’t miss out when properties are going fast.
A dedicated realtor will do more than just drive you around to listings. They will actively canvas a neighborhood, looking for potential sellers. They can also network with selling realtors who might be able to find you a home in your desired area and price range, before it even goes on the market.
A seasoned realtor can take some of the competitive emotion out of fighting multiple offers. She can caution you about homes that don’t appraise for an unrealistic asking price. Do you really want to bring thousands of extra dollars to the closing table to make up the difference between the appraised price, and an inflated asking price?
Why not look at properties on your own and try to cut a deal with the selling broker?
If you are an experienced buyer, this can be a tempting idea. As a realtor of 11+ years who has ‘seen it all’, here are the caveats:
Because you are trying to take the commission that would normally go to the buying agent, your offer will probably be less than list price. Even if the selling broker explains to the seller that this won’t mean less money for them, many sellers still don’t like the thought of selling for a lower amount. Also, the seller may not look as favorably on your offer, as it will appear less secure than one represented buy a reputable buyer’s agent.
However, the real reason I caution against this route, especially if you are a new or newer buyer, is that no one is looking out for you. The seller’s agent is looking out for the seller’s interests, trying to negotiate the best terms and top dollar for their client. Who is looking out for you, to make sure you’re aware that there are railroad tracks three houses away with a train that goes 23 times a day, or that there’s been a class-action suit against the home builder, or that you’re in a flood plain?
In fact, what is a buying broker going to do for you that you can’t do for yourself?
When you buy a home, it’s natural to feel an emotional attachment. You might ‘fall in love’ with a property or a neighborhood, or see a property that meets your needs in all respects but multiple offers are coming in thick and fast, and you’re unsure whether to up your offer or let this one go. Or, perhaps the inspection uncovers some grim findings, and you’re unsure whether or not to proceed or back out.
A reputable broker isn’t looking for a quick commission, but a lifelong client who trusts them and is happy to refer them. Knowledge of the neighborhood, the current market, and professional resources can help ease the way of this huge decision.
A buying realtor, who has dealt with the above scenarios numerous times, and who has no emotional attachment to the property or neighborhood, can provide you with the information you need to make the decision that is in your best interests.
So, to answer your question, why do I need a realtor? Buying a home is often the biggest investment you’ll make. Use a professional to help make sure it’s a good one!
Link Real Estate Group has been helping homebuyers and home sellers for over a decade. If you’re looking for an experienced, dedicated realtor to help you navigate the challenging Denver real estate market, please get in touch!
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