The following article is from a buyers perspective since it is written by a Buyer:
A buyer needs to get and work with an agent and only ONE agent to find their home – NEVER give your info to an open house agent if you are working with another already -BAD ADVICE!! secondarily, this is a hot market – in my area prices are up about 10-15% over the past 6 months. Buyers need to get loan pre-approval BEFORE looking and be aware that loan appraisals are generally coming in low to sale price. this means that any appraisals deficiency will require the Buyer to pay the difference in cash at the close of escrow – working with an experienced agent can help buyers avoid the unexpected surprise. The key for a buyer being successful in their search is: define your exact must-haves from your want-to’s, know exactly what they can buy and what the costs will be, work closely with a loan officer to ensure no credit surprises during the purchase. Lastly – don’t be afraid to make offers on more than one home. Again, working with a good agent who understands your Needs from your like to haves will get you your dream home – be persistent!!
Work with ONE agent, but only if he/she is truly working for you. If your agent is sending you automatic email listings and not staying in touch otherwise, find another who is ready, willing and able to go to work for you. I found an agent that understood what I wanted and worked hard to find me the right house. Sign a buyers agreement with an agent who is willing to work hard and you are sure you want to hire them. However, do not buy the house on your own without an agent representing you and do not contact the listing agent directly. His/her interest and loyalty are for the seller NOT for you. Buyers should always have the right representation! Just as you wouldn’t use same attorney to negotiate both sides of a divorce right? Sometimes it may work against you by calling the listing agent direclty. Remember, its not what you know, its who you know.
The most important thing to bear in mind is to find a hard working , trustworthy, knowledgeable agent to work with you. Then be LOYAL to your agent. A hot shot agent will not be able to have the time to give you the kind of attention you need, especially you are a first time home buyer. Most of those hot shot agents prefer to be the listing agent than the buying agent anyhow since there is little work involved.
Buyer agency agreement with the agent to secure their representation. This is to your advantage as it confirms the agent’s duties to you as their client under statutory law or as common-law fiduciary duties. These duties include:
- Undivided loyalty – the agent must act in your best interests at all times
- Obedience – the agent must follow all of your lawful instructions
- Reasonable care and diligence – the agent is required to protect you from foreseeable risks of harm
- Full disclosure – the agent must disclose all information concerning the property and its purchase that might affect the decisions you make
- Accounting – the agent must safeguard money or property held on your behalf
The agreement should indicate whether the agent will act for you exclusively, the parties to the agreement, the end date, a description and location of the desired home, the agent’s duties and buyer’s responsibilities and the agent’s commission. (It is preferable that the agent receive a commission even if you purchase a property which is “For Sale by Owner”.)
A good agreement with the agent incorporating the above elements will help to make your working relationship with the agent a successful one.