Agent or No Agent?
When buying a home the question always comes up: realtor or no realtor? There are a multitude of online resources packed full of advice for investors wanting to buy a home without the services of a realtor. The financial undertaking of purchasing a home is daunting enough, so why not cut out the cost of one more person? It may seem like those step-by-step guides can successfully lead you through buying a home, but here are a few things to consider before flying solo.
Realtors have lots of resources
Buying a home can be very time consuming, and for a lot of people time is money. Researching the market, the neighbourhood, the homes’ history and going through the mountains of paperwork can be all-consuming — especially if you're not familiar with the ins and outs of a home transaction. Realtors are privy to all this information and are professionally trained to handle and explain all related documentation.
Realtors also make a point of getting to know other professionals in the industry, including home inspectors, mortgage brokers, lawyers, etc. These connections can be invaluable to a home buyer as you work through the process.
Realtors know how to negotiate
Negotiating isn't a skill everyone processes, but in today's housing market it’s crucial. With bidding wars and sky high prices the competition is fierce, and a realtor can get you a step ahead while negotiating moves that won't put you at risk.
The back and forth on a offer agreement can be time consuming and the lingo confusing. A realtor will be able to walk you through the documents, ensuring there is appropriate time for inspections, disclosures are met, and all issues are resolved before the sale is final.
A licensed realtor has ethics
We’ve all heard it, “a realtor is just out to get their piece of the profit”; however, this a common misconception. Of course they want to be paid for their services — don't we all — but the vast majority of realtors genuinely want to provide a useful service. Further, codes of conduct have been put in place to ensure the consumer relationship with their agent is one in which the latter works with the former’s best interests as their chief goal.
In Canada, all licensed realtors must belong to the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), whose Strict Standard of Conduct is publicly available on the CREA website, CREA.ca. Realtors run on reputation; they strive to make a good name for themselves.
Realtors offer support
A realtor really does work for you. They provide more then just the security of having a professional on your side. Buying a home brings up a lot of questions, and a realtor is there to help you work through all that arise. Further, if they can’t assist you directly, they use their connections to find someone who can. Not only is a realtor able to help you make sense of all the technical paperwork, they can be that reassuring voice encouraging you to pursue your dream investment!