Now that you’ve decided to buy a home in Northwest Indiana, you may ask yourself, “Do I need a real estate agent to buy a home?”

Using a real estate agent to buy a house can help you find the perfect home and negotiate on your behalf so you get the best deal possible, plus so much more. But not everyone is convinced that hiring a real estate agent is a good idea.

If you’re on the fence about using an agent, read on to learn more about the pros and cons of working with a real estate agent to buy a house.

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Photo by Alena Darmel

Using a real estate agent to buy your house is a great asset to any home buyer. A real estate agent will help you find the perfect house for you and your family, negotiate the best price and terms, and help you find mortgage financing. They will also act as transaction manager of the home-buying process, providing a center point for all vendor communications. Most importantly, they will know how to handle all of the details, and avoid all the pitfalls, involved in buying a home.

Duties Of A Buyers Agent

When using a real estate agent to buy a home, these are just some of the things your Realtor will do for you:

  • Search For Homes
  • Schedule Showings
  • Write Purchase Agreements, Amendments, and Addendums
  • Negotiate Best Deal For Buyers
  • Review Title Committment
  • Serve as Transaction Manager
  • Negotiate Home Inspection Issues
  • Review Closing Statements
  • Attend Closing
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Photo by Andrea Piacquadio

Cons Of Using A Realtor To Buy A House

Real estate agents can be expensive. They can charge a fee for finding you a home, negotiating the deal, and representing you through the closing. When you’re shopping around, be sure to compare prices and ask about fees. But there are few risks to working with a real estate agent. Realtors must follow a Code of Ethics to have your best interests at heart, by law. Still, if you choose to work with an agent, be sure to research them thoroughly and ask for references. You should also consider asking for a written contract with all details spelled out so there are no surprises at closing.

When You Should Definitely Hire a Local Agent

You should definitely hire a local agent to assist you in buying a house if you are probably going to choose a home listed on the MLS and not a for-sale-by-owner.

This is because the seller most likely already contracted to pay the buyer’s agent commission so you will be getting the services of a professional negotiator, as well as a transaction manager and guide, for no cost at all. You’d be a fool not to use a real estate agent to buy your house then!

How To Choose The Right Realtor For You

The National Association of Realtors Trends Report states that when choosing an agent to work with, using a real estate agent to buy that was honest and trustworthy was the most important factor. Here are more tips on how to choose the right real estate agent to help you buy your home:

To choose an agent, start by considering their professional background and experience. They should be licensed in your state and have a minimum of five years of experience in real estate.

Choose agents who have had success helping people buy homes. Be sure to interview several agents before you make your final decision. Can you see yourself spending a considerable amount of time together?

You should also ask them about their past experiences with clients, as well as any fees they might charge for services like paperwork. Ask about additional beneficial training and certifications. It is also important to ask about their referral network, as this will help you gauge their trustworthiness.

Do You Pay A Real Estate Agent If You Are The Buyer?

When buying a home in Northwest Indiana, the buyer’s agent commission is paid by the seller in most cases. So generally the buyer does not, in fact, pay for their own Realtor.

It is one of those rare situations where you get loyal, professional representation and somebody else pays the bill!

To be more exact, the listing agent shares some of his commission with any agent who brings him the ultimate buyer. But the commission originates from the seller, obviously.

Who Pays My Agent If I Want To Buy A FSBO?

A real estate transaction is a multi-layered legal transaction that tends to be very stressful and emotional for both the buyer and seller.  So using a real estate agent to buy  will protect your best interests, provide contracts, negotiate your best deal, and manage the entire transaction – even if the For Sale By Owner (FSBO) seller forgoes representation.

If you want to go see a FSBO, let your real estate agent know first so they can call the seller and arrange for an agreement where the FSBO seller still pays your buyer’s agent commission. If not, the buyer will have to pay their agent themselves.

How Does A Buyers Agent Get Paid?

Who pays your agent when you are buying a house??

When It May Make More Sense to Go Alone

On some rare occasions, it actually doesn’t make sense to use a real estate agent when buying a home. Agents are very valuable as the cool, level head in a hotbed of stress running high between emotional buyers and sellers both looking to win. They also protect the interest of their side.

But if there are no sides, such as when a trusted family member sells to another family member, then perhaps an agent isn’t needed. You will still need legal contracts drawn up though. But it is never advisable to forgo your own professional representation with a stranger, especially in the biggest financial transaction of your life.

Final words: Is Using A Real Estate Agent To Buy A House Worth It?

It’s a resounding YES! Real estate agents are uniquely able to relate to the myriad of emotions and connect with their clients. They can help save you money, provide guidance through the process, and ensure you find the perfect home for your family at the perfect price.

No matter what your situation, working with a real estate agent can have benefits for you and your family, as well as greater peace of mind. And the best part…it’s usually at no cost to you, the buyer!

FREE Buyer's Guide To Real Estate

Buying a home is a major financial endeavor which can be made more complicated if you’re not working with a real estate agent. Buying a house involves multiple tasks and steps. This guide will help you navigate the process and make sure you have everything in place before you put on your home-buying shoes.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Is it better to use the sellers agent?

First, understand that the sellers agent is bound by law to work in the best interest of their seller no matter who the buyer is. For that reason alone, it would be wise to think hard before using the sellers real estate agent to buy that house. The “edge” you expect isn’t real life.

Dual-Agency is the term given when the sellers agent is also the buyers agent on that listing…they represent both sides of the deal.

Dual-agency is such a landmine of potential legal issues that some states do not even allow the sellers agent to represent the buyer too. For those states that allow it, many Realtors feel one can’t truly serve the buyers in their best interest in this set up and refuse to accept a dual-agent opportunity.

It will serve a buyer best if they have their own personal representation. You want your own negotiator, your own advocate. Take advantage of the best deal in real estate by using a real estate agent to buy this house that is there to represent YOU first!

Is it better to go with a local Realtor?

When looking at all the choices when using a real estate agent to buy a home, definitely choose a local Realtor.

Real estate happens in individual houses, in a neighborhood, one transaction at a time…all real estate IS local! (As David Lereah of NAR’s book digs deep on the subject).

Every county, even every town has different market conditions and trends that good, local Realtors are well-versed in. They have personal experience, and knowledge, about the local neighborhoods you’re considering. They’ll also have the local contacts and referrals you’ll need during the home buying process.

What if I decide I want a different real estate agent?

Because your real estate agent has already invested time and expenses into your home buying process, the right thing to do is have an honest conversation with your agent first.

If you can’t fix the issue, your Realtor will at least have first-hand experience with great agents in their office and be able to refer you a fabulous replacement.

Are real estate agent and Realtors the same thing?

They are similar but different. What makes it confusing is that all Realtors are real estate agents but not all real estate agents are Realtors.

We all get our education and pass state and national testing and become real estate agents. But Realtors are members of The National Association of Realtors (NAR) and must adhere to higher ethical standards. The NAR Code of Ethics demands that Realtors are fiduciary and work in the best interest of their clients, even above their own interests.

If you’ve come to the conclusion that using a real estate agent to buy your home is the wise choice, call Denise Mathews, Realtor. She will guide you thru the process, she’s a smart negotiator, and also an A+ problem solver which makes her the best kind of transaction manager!

Denise Mathews Realtor®

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Phone

(219) 798-5153