February 10, 2015

Buyer Agency is free!


Buying a house is one of the most expensive purchases you are likely to ever make, so it is important to do it right and get the best price possible.

In North Carolina, Buyer Agency (hiring an agent to help you buy a home) is free! Why would you not have an agent educate you on the market, search for the right property for you, negotiate the best price, terms and conditions of the purchase of your new home for you? If you don’t have an agent or are considering purchasing your first home my advice is to reach out to a trusted Realtor who can help you with the process.

I have heard many regretful stories from people who wished they had known better when they purchased a newly constructed home for example directly from a builder sales representative (also sometimes called an on-site agent). These sales people normally work a set schedule at a model home for a community that is new. They are normally hired directly from the builder so this is an important thing to note. In that role, that on-site agent’s job is to represent the builder and to work for his/her best interest. For example, an on-site agent is not going to educate you on the prices of the recently closed homes in the community nor are they going to volunteer that you may have negotiation room with the prices and/or home options.

A buyer’s agent is not only needed in new construction home purchases but also in the purchase of resale’s or existing homes for sale. Those homes normally are on “lockbox” and you as a buyer need someone to open the lock box to view the home. If you simply call the agent off the sign you may or may not give yourself the best negotiating power by possibly disclosing your motivation, price range, family situation, etc. because that agent has an obligation to the seller first.

Buyers agents’ work very hard to learn your wish list in your new home and help research the homes that will work for you. An experienced Realtor® will help you navigate learning the area(s) of town that are good for what you are wanting in your criteria. Also, isn’t it reassuring that you would have a professional guiding you to make the best investment possible for your budget?

The Wilmington, North Carolina housing market overall reported an increase in average sales prices when comparing 2013 to 2014 numbers. Eight out of the eleven zip codes reported in Wilmington Regional Association of Realtors (28443, 28449, 28428, 28480, 28451, 28412, 28411, 28409, 28405, 28403 and 28401) had a list price to sales price ratio above 95%. Which is great for sellers but another way to look at is; that is about 5% off the list price across the board that the buyers where able to save on their purchase. Of the 5,000 sellers in 2014, 34% paid some sort of concession toward the purchase of the house. So, basically that is another indicator and supporting factor for why you want to have a great buyers agent negotiating on your behalf. Concessions could range from closing cost assistance provided by the seller to money in lieu of repairs.

If you or someone you know is considering purchasing their first home, encourage them to seek representation. I would prefer it be from me (but even if it’s not from me), in the best interest of every transaction, every buyer deserves a great buyer’s agent. Thanks for reading! For questions feel free to email me at shannonlee@seacoastrealty.com

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