Buying a Home? Who's Really Your Friend?

Real Estate Agent with Ridgway Real Estate 40037375

One of the most misunderstood aspects of buying a home is whether the the real estate agent REALLY represents you, the home buyer?

Yes, you do have the right to ask an agent to solely represent you. In fact, some real estate brokers may require that they be your exclusive agent. Here are some FAQs as to what’s involved and why you should consider it when buying your next home, second home or investment property.

1. What does Buyer Representation mean? The real estate agent represents your interest. They are required to be loyal, accountable and not disclose any information about you that you don’t want the seller or the other real estate agent to know.

2.Should you call the agent who listed the house for sale? You may, but they are representing the seller — not you — and their responsibility is to get the highest price and the most money for the seller. You will also have to sign a piece of paper stating that you are aware that the listing agent represents the seller, and will do his or her best to be fair and honest.

3.Will you get a better deal if you work with the listing agent? Some people think since the real estate agent would be getting all the commission when working with both the buyer and the seller, that the listing agent will negotiate a better deal. The bottom line is that if the seller doesn’t accept the offer, or if you, the buyer, won’t counter with another price, it’s out of the agent’s control and the sale does not happen.

4.Will they only show you listings that are in the MLS? An agent who represents buyers not only can show you properties listed for sale through the Multiple Listing Service, they can also contact For Sale By Owners. If there is a home you’d like to buy, but it’s not for sale, they can knock on the door for you and ask if they would consider selling it to you.

5.How much does it cost? Over 99% of the time, the seller still pays the real estate commission. There are extremely rare times where the seller may not agree to pay the commission, but you will know ahead of time if there are any issues.

6.Do you need to sign anything? Yes. In fact, in Colorado, a written agreement is required in order for a real estate broker to represent the buyer as an agent. It is called an Exclusive Right-to-Buy Listing Contract, and it outlines what the agent's duties are and his or her responsibility to you, the home buyer. It lets the seller and the real estate agents know that you have an exclusive relationship with your agent, and if they tell your agent something about the property, or the seller, or any other information, your agent has the duty to tell you. You will usually have to sign it for a period of time—but that too is negotiable between you and the agent.

If you are thinking of buying a home, contact me, and I'll recommend several great buyers' agents. If you are thinking of selling your home, I also know many great listing agents I can recommend to you.

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Comments (2)

Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Exclusive buyer representation is one of the best things that came about in many states. Both buyers and sellers need to know where the lines are drawn and who is representing their interests. It's one reason I don't like dual representation.

Nov 06, 2014 09:35 PM
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

Hi, Ninah...this is a great post that really spells out why buyers should consider working with an agent that will represent them. Nice work. 

Nov 07, 2014 07:34 AM