There has been much debate about the pros and cons of using a buyer’s agent when buying a property. But it comes down to one very simple factor. When you buy through a listing agent, who is looking out for your interests?
The listing agent’s priority is getting the best price possible for the seller (they get a percentage of the sale as commission and will want the property to sell for the highest possible price). Using a buyer’s agent ensures that your interests, as the buyer, are fully represented in the price negotiations. Buyer’s agents are essentially professional property buyer advocates, and fight for the lowest price on your behalf.
So, when it comes to getting your hands on your dream property, for the most affordable price available, these are some of the things to consider when deciding if you want to go it alone or involve a buyer’s agent in the process.
Knowing the Market
A lot of the decision to enlist the help of a buyer’s agent will depend on your understanding of the property market. Buyer’s agents work closely with listing agents and spend every day of their professional lives assessing and negotiating property values.
As a result, they can quickly detect when a buyer might be paying too much for a property. If you have a strong understanding of the property market, it is possible to do this yourself. But the vast majority of house buyers are simply not aware when a seller is asking too much for a property.
Your Negotiating Ability
Another factor worth considering in the decision of whether or not to get a buyer’s agent is how strong your negotiating skills are. Ultimately, the buyer’s agent is there to negotiate on your behalf and get the best deal on your new home.
There Could be a Hitch
Unfortunately, the nature of the real estate industry means that there are a lot of steps to carry out when buying a property. With so many steps, there is plenty of margin for delays and hurdles, and the reality is that almost no property purchases go through without one major hurdle.
A buyer’s agent is experienced and has completed the property purchasing process hundreds of times with buyers. They know what could go wrong and likely know how to prevent this from happening or, if it does go wrong, they will know how to solve it. Many buyers take on a buyer’s agent just to help them navigate the property-purchasing minefield and give the feeling of security throughout the process.
In the Vast Majority of Cases, it is Free
In most cases, hiring a buyer’s agent is free. They split the commission on the agreed sale price of the house with the listing agent.
This means that in the majority of cases, you do not need to pay a penny. The only scenario where you may have to pay is if the property is being sold by the owner themselves without a listing agent.