As you’re shelling out your hard-earned cash for a new home, it can seem like the costs just build up like a mountain of never-ending debt. But did you know the one cost you don’t have to worry about is real estate commissions? It’s true – who pays the commissions can sometimes seem confusing. But even though your agent works on your behalf to help you find the right home for the right price, the cost of their services is covered by the seller.
Even if you decided to forego working with an agent, what would’ve been your agent’s commission is still covered by the seller. But considering all the moving parts involved in purchasing a new home, it’s in your best interest to find a realtor you trust to help guide and support you through the process. When you find the right one for you, they’ll likely have you sign an agreement that details the parameters of their work, as well as their commission structure and how they coordinate with the seller and their real estate team.
Of course, you’ll want to make sure to vet your potential real estate representative, so make sure you do your research. Once you’ve canvassed your friends for input and taken references from others who have bought or sold a home before, look online to see what others are saying about your potential agent. Make sure the agents you’re looking at are well-versed in the kinds of properties you’re looking to buy, and the neighborhood you want to buy in. They don’t have to specialize in them, but it certainly helps.
Then, meet with your agent to see how you click – and if you do, go ahead and sign the agreement so you can move forward. Just make sure your agent isn’t the same as the seller’s agent – there’s no need to encourage double-dipping when there are so many agents out there for you to choose from.
By contract, your agent will be expected to work in your best interest, and has certain criteria they must meet and uphold. For example, they have to keep your financial information secure, promise to barter to the best of their abilities on your behalf, and show you everything that fits your requirements and budgets. If they’re representing a competing buyer for a property you’re interested in, they have to tell you. Your agent will also help connect you to possible lenders, appraisers, inspectors and more as you near the offer and closing stages of home ownership.
In exchange, you’re expected to remain exclusive with your chosen agent. Remember, you comparison shopped your agents in the beginning for a reason, so when you find one you’re ready to settle with, make a commitment to them. You should also be clear with your wants, needs and budgetary requirements so your agent can find you properties that best fit your preferences.
Your agent is a key member of your real estate team, and is on hand to help you find the most ideal space for you. Help them to do their best work for you, and you’ll find your dream home in no time!