Breathe in the smell of new. Gaze over the fine finishes, the paint colors, the flooring. Taste and feel the excitement of living in a house with no projects, new neighbors, and all new possibilities of decorating! Hear the incentives from builders closing out the year! Sounds enticing, but take a moment before being swept away. A home purchase whether it’s a brand new build or a resale home is a LARGE investment, in fact, it’s likely the largest purchase you’ll ever make. Who’s representing your interest? Who’s got the singular job of providing the best advice for you? It’s your agent, of course. But WHO is that? Isn’t it the person selling the home in the new home subdivision? The short answer is “no” and I’ll explain why.
It’s a common misconception that you don’t need an agent when you buy a new home and perhaps you don’t, but there are some important things to consider before you make that decision.
- Your agent is your advocate and will help you understand your contract and obligations. They may also be the voice that reminds you that your mother who doesn’t walk well may be coming to live with you soon and there’s no downstairs bedroom OR that you said you wanted a one story with a 3 car garage, but you’re getting ready to sign a contract where all the bedrooms are upstairs. The agent that works in the new home office is NOT your agent. They work for and are paid by the builder. Imagine going into court where you’re being sued and opting to use the attorney on the other side. The similarities are about representation. One agent (or attorney) may not be able to represent both sides well.
- Your agent is there to provide you with objective and unbiased professional advice and be the resource to get answers and resolutions to questions and issues.
- Your agent helps to negotiate the best deals because they understand the process.
- Your agent knows the area and knows the builders. Your agent also knows the process. Let me ask you. If you did something once, are you an expert? How about if you do it over and over again? Do you believe that repeated action confers a level of insurance? Real Estate Agents help people buy and sell homes as their chosen career and many also as a vocation to serve. They know what I call the “Sunny Day Scenario” where everything goes swimmingly and they also know what to do when something gums up the process.
- Your agent probably knows which builders are offering the best incentives.
- Your agent doesn’t charge you for representing your best interest when you’re the buyer. What?! No charge? That’s right! The way this works is that the builder pays the agent in the same way that a resale seller pays the commission and it’s built into the builder’s marketing budget. The builder-agent relationship works on word-of-mouth marketing which is a more direct form of marketing.
Lastly, there’s nothing stopping you from using the agent who represents the builder. But if you want exclusive representation, you must go to the new home subdivisions with your agent to have your own representation.
I love helping people whether it be buying or selling and I love to share information that helps people make informed decisions! Feel free to ask me questions – sometimes those questions and the subsequent answers turn into blogposts because your question is likely relevant to others as well!