4. Don’t be pushed into any house
Your agent should show you homes available that meet your requirements. Don’t make a decision on a house until you feel that you’ve seen enough to pick the best one. A good agent with knowledge of the market will be able to help you find “the house.” You don’t have to see 30 homes to find the place, and don’t be afraid if the first home is the one.
A decade ago, homes were selling quickly, usually a few days after listing. In that kind of market, agents advised their clients to make an offer on the spot if they liked the house. That was good advice at the time. Today there isn’t always such urgency, unless a home is drastically underpriced, and you’ll know it if it is.
5. Hire a buyer’s agent
Many buyers think they will get a better deal working directly with the listing agent. Remember, the listing agent is representing the seller and not you!
The most important thing you can do is have someone on your side looking out for your best interests. Your own agent will critique the property based on your needs, and will point out any drawbacks.
Pick an agent you feel comfortable with, and enlist the services of that agent as a buyer’s broker. Ask friends and family who they have used and why they liked them.
Interview several agents to find a good fit, and then sign a Buyers Agency Agreement. Then you become a client with all the rights, benefits, and privileges created by this agency relationship, and you’re no longer just a shopper.
Did you know that many homes are sold without a sign or newspaper ad? These “great deals” go to those people who are committed to working with one agent. When an agent hears of a great buy, who do you think they are going to call? Their client, who they have a legal obligation to work hard for, or someone who just called on the phone and said “keep your eyes open?” So to get the best buy on a property, I always recommend that you hire your own agent and stick with him or her.
by Marci Yankelov
Special to The Baltimore Guide