New Construction & Buyer Representation
Written by- Al Friedman, Sun Realty Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina
One of the constant misconceptions that I have run into throughout my real estate career is the notion that if you’re buying a newly constructed home, you don't need to have a realtor representing you. Well, I'm here to tell you, nothing-could be further from the truth!
It's rearguard by a lot of folks that when they walk into a model home and speak with the sales rep, that person will represent their interests in a sales transaction. Those sales reps are there for one reason, and one reason alone. They are hired by the builder to be an exclusive representative for the builder only. While most builders are reputable in terms of the quality of the product they build, they are not out there to give a buyer the best deal they can get.
let's look at the sales transaction from the beginning. When you first meet the sales rep or the builder, typically , it's in the model home. These homes are usually constructed with most, if not all of the options the builder is offering. The model is also normally well-furnished and decorated. The idea is to present the buyer with such an overwhelming image, that they will sign a contract of sale before they know what hit them. Many questions need to be asked at this point, prior to signing a sales agreement. Some include, but are not limited to, the size of the development, the makeup of the price structure in the community. What is the lot situation? Are the premiums to be paid on certain lots? How will the lots be cleared and graded? Will any of the public utilities appear on your lot? Is the builder offering incentives, such as closing cost assistance?
After the pre-contract questions are asked, then it's time to negotiate. This is critical point in the process. A lot of buyers believe a builder will be more flexible with them on the price of a home if they are not working with a realtor. In fact most often, the opposite is true. An experienced realtor is aware of the market conditions and generally has a good feel for the amount of flexibility builder actually has on his pricing. Recent clients of mine accidentally started negotiating a price with a builder, and thought they were getting a good deal. Before it was too late, they asked me to assist, as their buyer's agent. I was able to help them negotiate and saved them over $30,000.00 on their new home.
When you're finally ready to sign the contract, you really need the expertise of the experienced realtor. Builder's contracts are very long, drawn out, and can be confusing. Most importantly, they're totally skewed to protect the builder only. You want to have someone in your corner, to protect your interests.
These are some of the possible pitfalls that you can experience, but there are other traps that a buyer could run into. Did you also know that, even though a final inspection is performed prior to settlement, with the builder, you really should also conduct your own independent inspection? There are many times in the whole buying process where you'll be very thankful that you had a good realtor representing your interests. Just remember, this is likely to be the single largest purchase you will make in your life. Shouldn't you have a professional assisting you? For more information on this and other real estate related matters, please go to my website at- http://www.alchefsellshomes.com.