Do You Really Need a Realtor or Buyers Agent When You Buy New Construction?

Buying a New Home

There are lots of new construction opportunities from Oconee to Athens, Gwinnett, Jackson County, Hall, and Barrow.  Many buyers will call the builder’s agent and decide to buy without consulting a Buyer’s Agent or Realtor of their own. Does it make sense to buy new construction without using your own Realtor? Advantages of Buying a new home or pre-sale new construction without having your own Agent.

Some Buyers feel today that if you do your homework you should be able to go in and negotiate without an agent. Many feel that most if not all of the information can be gathered from the internet or by doing a little ground work. 

What’s interesting however is that buyer representation is free to the Buyer. The job of the agent is to be able to properly represent the client without the client having to do "homework".  I've stopped doing my own taxes years ago.  Sure I could do a lot online and with tax software I can get answers to questions, but how reliable is the information I am given online, and at a point I know I am lost.  I am lost because I don’t do taxes every day and don’t know tax law and procedure as well as my CPA. I enjoy letting the experts handle my affairs that could cost me thousands of dollars, and I pay my CPA for her knowledge! For me, I handle more than one closed transaction every single week of the year!  I active practice completing transactions and looking out for my client’s interests in each occasion.  I know what to look for and how to keep my eyes open throughout the process through to a closing!

Why would a home buyer need an agent to represent them when building new construction?

1) The site agent or builder’s listing agent represents the builder. They are not there to "help" the consumer which is “you” the home buyer.

2) A buyer's agent can inform the client of issues in construction, knows what questions to ask, you don't always get what you see.  Not all builders and their agents understand how to follow the contract! Without your own representation things can get left out and missed.  The builder’s agent is not going to call their client, the builder, on the carpet and jeopardize a relationship and listings in the future over one sale!

3) An experienced agent will save the consumer money building with new construction, builders do not discount the price because the consumer has no representation. Real Estate is a huge investment, why not use a professional that has years of experience and knowledge to put to work for you. It is like trying to be your own attorney. Not usually a good idea.

4) How good is the reputation of the builder?  You may not know, but chances are good that I do!  Today getting a mortgage lender or Realtor's review is easy. My profile at Zillow shows how many closed sales I have had in the past year (even graphs where I closed them on a map) and tells you my reviews. What is the reputation of the builder? How many homes have they built and sold in the past year?  Have they sold 2, 5 or 50? For builders how would you know yourself what their reputation is regarding their home warranty and responsiveness to dealing with warranty issues after the sale? Through working with an agent that does a lot of new home and pre-sale new construction working on the Buyer's side of the table, I have been there before so to speak! I can tell you of past issues or problems with area builders. I can also tell you praises of those that do what they say they will do!  Use my insights to give you peace of mind when making one of the largest finanical commitments you will ever make!

5) Your Buyer's Agent very well may be familiar with how a builder prices his products and where there may be room to negotiate price or upgrades. 

6) Without representation, you are one buyer purchasing only one home. But a sales professional can significantly impact a builder’s bottom line by providing a steady supply of customers and repeat business from other Buyers we work with each month! This leverage may work in your favor at the negotiating table. 

7) When relocating to a new area, sales professionals can be particularly valuable resources. In addition to providing local area information regarding schools, day care or elder care services, public transportation, proposed development, and so on, once construction is under way, they can periodically stop by the work site, supply you with progress reports, and photograph or video phases of the construction. 

One common reason I hear from buyers not wanting a Buyer’s Agent involves their desire to "save" the typical 2.5% commission on a sale. That 2.5% commission is either paid to your Buyer’s agent or it's paid to the Seller's Agent (who would then make 5%). So, it's a "use it or lose it" situation-- not actually a "savings" situation. It's more like "BOGO." If you don't use your own agent, the other agent makes the whole commission. This is a business transaction for the builder. And the builder is out to make a profit. They even want you to use their lending companies, because they can make even more money off of you.

Buyer beware if dealing with an employee of the builder or builder’s agent.

Advantages to having your own Buyer’s Agent on a new home purchase, countless. We can run a CMA to base a reasonable offer (never pay list), help with selections, walk through, inspections, lenders, closing, the list is endless.  Also, a Buyer’s Agent can catch upgrades that are forgotten about or missed that are “in the contract!”  I can refer you to lenders other than just the builder’s lender to shop rates and lending fees, and show you comparable properties in the area to make sure that you are getting all the information to make the best buying decision! Regarding helping with selections, you as a Buyer don't want to be the highest priced home in the neighborhood because your upgrades are not supported based on recent sales in the neighborhood.  Buyers should know what upgrades will give them the best bang for their buck and your Agent will be able to provide good recommendations.  

Not all agents are the same and not all Buyer’s Agents are the same either.  I get told by Builder’s listing agents or sales agents all the time that I am different. I am different because I don’t just ink a contract and go away. I am proactive helping my clients from the first walk through all the way to closing and the final punch out of the home! My reviews on Zillow,  , speak of my commitment to my clients as an Accredited Buyer’s Agent!

If you are buying and looking at new homes in Jackson County, Hall, Oconee, Gwinnett, and Athens please contact me. I would love to be of service!