Five reasons to engage a buyer's agent
Whether you’re a first-time buyer, looking for an investment property, or downsizing, there are numerous reasons to use a buyer's agent.
Buyer’s agents are a relatively new breed of property professional. Many of these home seeking experts are licensed real estate agents who have made the switch from selling properties to helping buyers secure off-market homes, quickly and cost-effectively.
Contra to popular belief, a buyer's agent is not someone engaged solely by the rich and famous. Regular, run-of-the-mill property transactions take place every day with the assistance of a buyer's agent. From first-time buyers to expats and downsizers, the people that make use of buyers' agents are many and varied.
So why are buyer’s agents so popular, and what can you expect for your investment?
What does a buyer’s agent actually do?
While it is pretty self-explanatory (they are agents who work for someone looking to buy a property) the role of a buyer’s agent is varied and depends on each particular home sale.
Some may think that buyers' agents simply hunt for local property listings in the same way the general public does, via real estate websites and property ads in news media.
The true skill of a buyer's agent is their ability to uncover hidden opportunities, negotiate swift property purchases, and provide comprehensive insights into current market conditions. They even handle the administration side of a property purchase saving you valuable time, and potentially money too.
Five buyers who will benefit from using a buyer’s agent
1. If you’re a first-time buyer or getting parental support.
There’s no doubt that buying a house for the first time is a huge decision. Budgets are often tight, even with a financial contribution from parents, so securing the right property is crucial. Making the right choice will pay off for years, and making the wrong decision can have an ongoing impact on your future finances.
Real estate agents work exclusively for their vendors (the home seller), so while they can offer some insights into the buying process, and give you advice about the particular property they are selling, their loyalty lies with the seller. Getting expert advice on the market from an experienced and impartial third party can, therefore, be invaluable.
A buyer’s agent will also provide valuable assistance when the time comes to negotiate on price. Buyers' agents can help you secure the right home without paying more than market value, as is often the risk for those who are inexperienced or feeling emotional about the property transaction.
Many of our client's highlight that having a buyer’s agent levels the playing field. You have a real estate professional who is trained in negotiation on your side of the table, the same way the seller does.
2. If you’re a downsizer
People often choose to downsize as they have raised their family and are getting close to retirement age. A smaller home with a reduced or paid-off mortgage is key to reducing financial commitments while still having the security of a reliable investment and somewhere to live.
But, for many downsizers, a lot has changed since they bought their family home, which is why they can benefit from the assistance of a buyer's agent, who is working in their local market day in and day out. In property, an understanding of what’s happening ‘right now’ is invaluable.
3. If you’re upgrading your home
Often those ready to move onto something bigger and better have specific criteria in mind. Their first home was all about what they could afford, but now they have other priorities, such as a good school nearby or space for growing kids.
Suitable homes in sought-after areas can be difficult to find, and available stock may not tick all the boxes. House-hunting is time-consuming for busy families, with a lot of wasted weekends and evenings inspecting properties that don’t meet their requirements. Which is where a buyer’s agent can really prove their worth, by screening houses and networking with local selling agents on their client’s behalf to uncover great homes before they hit the market.
4. If you’re an expat
Buying property back home can be difficult if you’re still living overseas, so it’s great to have a real estate expert working for you who can view properties, arrange inspections, help organise finance and even bid on properties on your behalf at auction. It can certainly make a stressful process a lot less so, meaning your return home will be a more enjoyable experience.
5. If you’re an investor
Unlike buying a home to live in, investment properties must fulfil specific requirements, but the difficulty often lies with property investors needing to make decisions with their head, not their heart. Buyers' agents can remove the confusion that comes with choosing a property that is purely for its income earning potential, as well as provide exceptional market knowledge.
There’s no doubt a buyer’s agent provides value
From providing in-depth local insights to using their real estate networks to uncover the ‘hidden’ property market - many benefits come with appointing a buyer’s agent.
Of course, the service comes with a price. Most buyers' agents charge either a fixed cost or commission-based fee (based on the purchase price of the property), and these vary between agencies.
So when it comes time for you to buy your next property, be sure to consider using a buyer’s agent.