I was at a holiday party recently when a friend of mine told me she and her husband are looking for a house, and were not working with a buyer’s agent. She told me that they had fallen in love with a house a few months ago, and the listing agent told her she didn’t need her own representation, that he’d “take care of her”. She went on to explain that the experience was a disaster. She felt completely alone in the process and realized that the listing agent offered her no advice or guidance and ignored her concerns when issues arose throughout the process of making and ratifying their offer.
While most real estate agents are completely ethical, we also have to remember that a “listing agent” represents the SELLER! This is because a listing agent is contractually bound to promote the needs and desires of their client – i.e, getting the highest possible return for the seller, not to mention, getting paid the entire commission because that agent won’t be required to split it with the buyer agent’s broker.
This means that unrepresented buyers are truly ON THEIR OWN! When you walk into an open house, or go see a listing you like, and you don’t have an agent representing YOU, being taken advantage of becomes that much easier! It’s important that I mention that my friend has never been one to be taken advantage of…ever! Both she and her husband are exceptionally smart and highly educated. Still, out there without professional representation, they became easy targets.
The right buyer’s agent is trained exhaustively in all aspects of buying and selling a home – things like contract writing and negotiations, preparing and enforcing addendums and deadlines, and most importantly, advocating for their clients’ best interests every step of the way! Buying a home is a HUGE decision and a COMPLICATED endeavor, one that should not be entered into without professional representation!
What most buyers also don’t realize is that the SELLER pays the professional fees, known as commissions, for both the listing agent and the buyer agent – meaning the seller pays for your representation! That’s right! When you buy a home the sellers, through their broker, pay your buyer agent!
So when you’re in the market to buy, remember, it is imperative to find someone who you know will promote YOUR interests, listen to YOUR concerns, and make sure YOUR home buying process is as stress free as possible! You have NOTHING to lose and EVERYTHING to gain!