Get­ting help when buy­ing a home

Top five rea­sons to hire a ‘buyer’s agent’

South Shore Breaker - - HOME&GARDEN - PATTI ROSS pat­tiross@roy­

So you’ve de­cided it’s time to buy a house. This can be an ex­cit­ing and some­times over­whelm­ing process. It’s most peo­ple’s sin­gle big­gest pur­chase in their life­time. Al­though it is pos­si­ble to go it alone when pur­chas­ing a home, it only makes sense to have a trained pro­fes­sional in your cor­ner to help guide you through the com­pli­cated — and at times — stress­ful jour­ney.

Here are few things to con­sider when hir­ing your own “buyer’s agent” to rep­re­sent you in the process.

Real­tors know the mar­ket

This will save you valu­able time. After de­ter­min­ing what you are look­ing for in a prop­erty and what you can af­ford, your Real­tor will as­sist you with se­lect­ing homes that meet your needs and wants, then sched­ule ap­point­ments for you to view th­ese homes.

Your Real­tor can ex­plain the pros and cons of var­i­ous homes and neigh­bour­hoods to help you de­cide which one is right for you.

Real­tors are skilled ne­go­tia­tors

Once you’ve de­cided on a prop­erty, it’s time to write an of­fer. Your Real­tor can ad­vise you on an ap­pro­pri­ate price to of­fer, depend­ing on the sit­u­a­tion.

They can pro­vide in­for­ma­tion on other cur­rent list­ings in the neigh­bour­hood, re­cently sold homes and how long they were on the mar­ket.

They will help you pre­pare an of­fer with terms and con­di­tions that are suit­able to you.

They will then present your of­fer on your be­half to en­sure you get the best pos­si­ble price and terms for the prop­erty.

Real­tors are ed­u­cated ad­vis­ers

They can help re­solve any is­sues that may arise along the way. If a prob­lem was to come from a home in­spec­tion, for ex­am­ple, your Real­tor can rec­om­mend the ap­pro­pri­ate ac­tions needed to pro­tect your in­ter­est.

If ne­go­ti­a­tions be­come heated or com­plex, their ex­per­tise and un­bi­ased per­spec­tive can help keep the ne­go­ti­a­tions on course.

Real­tors con­nect you with trusted pro­fes­sion­als

The home-pur­chas­ing process re­quires ser­vices from many dif­fer­ent pro­fes­sion­als.

Real­tors work with a net­work of trusted pro­fes­sion­als they can rec­om­mend to their clients: mort­gage bro­kers, real es­tate lawyers, home in­spec­tors, con­trac­tors, ap­prais­ers and more.

Real­tors’ fees are of­ten paid for by the seller

There are many dif­fer­ent fee mod­els, how­ever, in most cases, there’s no ex­tra fee for the buyer for the ser­vices of their Real­tor. The seller pays the com­mis­sion for both the buyer’s agent and the seller’s agent as part of the com­mis­sion fee in the listing agree­ment. It is ba­si­cally built into the price of the home, and that is the way it’s al­ways been.

So how do you find your own Real­tor?

Ask a friend or fam­ily mem­ber for a rec­om­men­da­tion. Visit some open houses in the area you want to live in and talk to agents you meet and see who you con­nect with. Are you look­ing for an agent that spe­cial­izes in new con­struc­tion, fixer-up­pers, condo pur­chases? Ask ques­tions. You want to feel like you are work­ing with some­one who un­der­stands your needs and that you are com­fort­able with.

Once you de­cide on which Real­tor you want to work with, you will sign a Buyer Bro­ker­age Agree­ment for a spec­i­fied pe­riod of time. This agree­ment out­lines the Real­tor’s ser­vices to you.

It also states that you will be solely rep­re­sented by this Real­tor in the buy­ing process for the time spec­i­fied in the con­tract, and that you will not be rep­re­sented by any other buyer’s agent.

This agree­ment en­sures your in­ter­ests are rep­re­sented to the fullest dur­ing the term of the con­tract.

It al­lows the Real­tor to share their ex­per­tise and knowl­edge with you.

It be­comes their duty to an­swer ques­tions that you may not even have thought to ask.

As seen in

Patti Ross is a full-time pro­fes­sional Real­tor® and home im­prove­ment ex­pert help­ing peo­ple buy, sell and im­prove their homes in HRM for more than 10 years.

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