I grew up with a dad who was a Realtor, understanding how to purchase property and apply for a loan was normal dinner conversation in our house. Real Estate was on par with learning how to drive: we all needed to learn and I learned before I finished high school.
It's no surprise then that I got my license to start selling Real Estate alongside my dad right after my 18th birthday and happily learned what 1031 exchanges were, negotiated on behalf of clients, and offered help to many first time home buyers. The one question I remember answering the most when I'd first meet with prospective home buyers was "What's the point of a Buyers Agent?"
Now, working with Terry, questions like "What's so important about a Buyers Agent?" and "Doesn't a Buyers Agent cost more money?" are still some of the most common questions I hear.
- A buyers agent assists the buyer to get them the best price and terms on their property.
- A sellers agent (listing agent) assists the sellers to get them the best price and terms on their property.
An example of how this would play out is; you're looking but haven't found a Realtor to work with. Possibly one has been emailing you listings and working on your behalf to alert you of homes before they hit the market. BUT you don't have a signed buyers agency contract with them yet and are "just looking" with their help but hunting solo on Saturdays for open houses.
You go to an open house where the Listing Agent is hosting and you fall in love with the home! This is so exciting, you're ready to buy the house you've been looking for. Who do you write your offer with? The listing agent? You could. They would love to help you buy this property. However, they're representing the sellers. So while you make an offer with the listing agent and hope for the best, contractually their fiduciary relationship is working on the sellers behalf to sell the home for the price they want.
That's not all bad. Working with the Listing Agent is 100% fine. They're just not representing your best interest and legally cannot. There is such a thing as a dual agent - where one agent will work as a sellers and buyers agent on the same property. But suffice it to say - having a Buyers Agent on your side from the get-go is a smart move. They do not get paid more for having a signed agency with you.
In Western Michigan the current commission rate is 6% of the selling price. The listing side of the agreement gets half of the 6%; while the buyers side gets the other half. Which means if you went to the listing agent and made an offer that was accepted and you were able to buy the home (yay!!) the entire 6% goes to the listing agent. Incidentally, the listing agent who wasn't working on your behalf.
It's not costing you additional funds to have someone working strictly for your best interest. So do you need a Buyers Agent? We think so. Terry's been buying, selling, and developing real estate for 28 years. His experience and expertise are a wealth of knowledge that would be working on your behalf as a Buyers Agent.
Inventory is low right now. If you've been considering selling your home but waiting for the right time: now might be it. Give Terry a call at 616-836-1258 or send us an email for a Comparative Market Analysis to discover your home's value in today's market. Our buyers are always looking!