Why You Need an Agent When Buying New Construction
Any time you are looking to purchase property it’s wise to consult a licensed real estate agent. Most people aren’t buying homes on a regular basis; purchasing a home often means navigating uncharted waters. Buying a home is exciting and new construction homes can be even more tempting; you’ll often have the opportunity to customize certain features of the home before it’s fully built. The process for purchasing a new construction home may at first seem pretty straightforward, but there are still numerous pitfalls you could make without someone working directly on your behalf, making sure you get the best deal. An agent can ensure you pay the right price, negotiate contracts on your behalf, and they bring a wealth of experience to the table.
Don’t Overpay for a New Construction Home
Buying a new home is a very exciting experience. New construction homes are very tempting because they are (most obvious) new, but also free of any existing damage or issues from previous residents. You will often also have the opportunity to customize certain features of the home before it’s built. With many new constructions buyers are given the option to change the look and feel of the home with different choices of countertops, appliances, carpeting, cabinetry, doorknobs, light fixtures, and the list goes on. What the sellers won’t tell you is these upgrades are often built using builder-quality (low quality) materials. They might look nice up front, but the quality leaves something to be desired.
It’s perfectly normal to be enamored by a new construction home and the customizable options they offer home buyers. Sellers will try to maximize the sale price of the home to their best advantage. A real estate agent working on your behalf will look at the home objectively, with only your welfare in mind ensuring you are not overcharged. An experienced agent can look over the home, the surrounding area, and in many cases is familiar with the builder. They can tell you if the seller is asking too much and can negotiate a price that protects your interests.
Very few people enjoy reading contracts. As a result, most contracts are quickly scanned by buyers eager to take possession of the new home. An experienced real estate agent not only knows how to read through the contracts, but also how to negotiate changes. Contracts are made by the builders with an emphasis on protecting their interests. This is not without good cause, as a potential buyer could request several upgrades and then walk on the deal, leaving the builder in a lurch. Contracts go both ways though and you want to be sure you’re not being taken advantage of.
An agent brings not only their keen eye, but negotiating power as well. If something doesn’t look right in the contract they can be sure you know about it before you sign, and negotiate on your behalf to make the changes. This will protect you from overpaying, committing to something you’re not comfortable with, and can help you back out of the contract if the builder violates any conditions. It is even possible to get your deposit money back if the builder violates the terms.
Gain the Advantage of Experience
Not many people are out buying homes on a regular basis. Most home buyers simply lack the experience necessary to understand the process inside and out – but not an agent. There a several reasons you should bring a professional real estate agent on when buying a new construction home:
- An agent has a better idea of what’s for sale in the market. Home buying websites (like Zillow and Redfin) can be helpful guides but they are notoriously inaccurate. Enlisting a real estate agent for your new construction home purchase will help you discover all the properties available to you so you can make a more-informed decision.
- Your agent will help you understand the taxes involved, HOA fees (if any), neighborhood trends, school districts, and many more details that can be difficult to fully fathom. If you’re buying a home, chances are you’re already pretty overwhelmed by paperwork, data, and numbers. The pre-approval process alone can wear you out. Your agent will help you understand your mortgage rate, yearly expenses, and will help you pick a neighborhood that fits your needs.
- When you bring an agent on to your team you adopt their network as well. An experienced real estate agent has an established network of movers, contractors, tradesmen, and more to help facilitate an easy move, and take care of any changes or upgrades. You will have access to this network long after you’ve purchased, making it easy to find someone for repairs or changes down the road.
- A licensed real estate agent is going to tell you the truth, even if it means passing on a potential commission. In most states, real estate agents are bound by common law to be honest with their clients and put buyer’s interests above their own. Additionally, most realtors work on a referral basis; they have more than a few reasons to be obligated to tell you the truth and do right by you. An agent can’t give you this kind of advice piecemeal; if you want the advantage of their experience you’ll need to bring them onto your team. Once the purchase has been made there isn’t much you can do if you discover later that you’ve been misled about the home. You can expect honest answers from your purchasing agent – which is not always going to be the case with the seller.
When you lay it all out, the commission you’ll pay a real estate agent is negligible compared to what you could spend in legal fees, unexpected repairs, or simply by overpaying for the home. When you bring an experienced real estate agent on for your new construction purchase, you’re adding their wealth of experience to your arsenal. I have helped Houston home buyers in over 500 purchases and sales – I want you to get the right home AND the best deal. The builder and seller have agents working hard on their behalf to protect their interests – you should too.