“A buyer can engage the services of a real estate agent to purchase property and the real estate agent is then the agent for the buyer, who becomes the agent’s client. This means that the real estate agent represents the buyer. The agent owes the buyer undivided loyalty, reasonable care, disclosure, obedience to lawful instruction, Confidentiality, and accountability, provided however that the agent must disclose known material defects in the real estate. The agent must put the buyer’s interests first and negotiate for the best price and terms for their client the buyer.” This is buyer’s agency according to the Massachusetts Academy of Real Estate.
Just like the seller’s agent, the buyer’s agent owes the buyer, their client, fiduciary responsibilities. That means the agent’s responsibilities are legally binding. When buying or selling homes in anywhere in Massachusetts, South Shore real estate agents owe their contracted clients the duty of undivided loyalty, reasonable care(I still won’t paint your house. , disclosure, obedience to lawful orders, confidentiality and accountability of funds are the standard.
Just the same as the seller’s agent, right? Not quite. Here’s the weird part. The buyer’s agent job is to decrease his own commission. Seriously, get the best deal…at the best value…for the client. The overriding concern of the agent must be the best interests of his client. No compromise, no retreat, no surrender. Since we’re all paid on commission, lower sales mean lower commission. Kinda weird, huh? Not so much as you think. More than most businesses, succesful real estate business rely on referrals. People always talk. If you do you’re job right, a successful house hunt can lead to a couple of active referrals, so you’re business feeds itself. People who buy talk more than people who sell, so personal monies lost by doing a specific job right can be recouped by volume of transactions.
A good buyer’s agent works like a detective. He thoroughly interviews his client to find out their hopes, dreams and expectations in a property. Then after a careful market research, compiles and maintains a list of properties for the client to view on a drive-by. Once the client, narrows the list a wee bit, The agent and client set up viewings. This is the fun part. Before viewing the house, the agent reviews public records, previous sales and gathers as much information as possible to prep questions for the sellers or their agent at the viewing. These questions all revolve around the properties suitability for the client and garnering better terms,conditions and/or price. I prefer accompanied viewings just for the purpose of airing some of these ideas and gathering more info. As the client views the house, the agent examines the house with a careful eye, gathering more info to build a better bargaining position.
OK, just to make this easier, we’ll skip the tennis match-like back and forth exchanges as the client reviews all the information gathered by the agent and decides which one of the properties fit them the best. The agent then explains offer strategy and if the client approves, writes up an offer. This is where the bargaining for the price, terms and conditions largely takes place. After this, it’s mostly paperwork and process.
Again, to save time, we’ll say the offer is accepted with minimal back and forth wrangling from both parties. Yeah! Now it’s time for the buyer to select a Home inspection team(Buyer’s Agent can’t help here. Conflict of interest. We can give you a list containing nearly every home inspector in Massachusetts, but that’s it.)and get them in the house within ten days. For that ten days, the buyer can cancel for any reason. The agent is back in the loop again if the inspection is OK or if it uncovers a deal-killing problem.
Ok, the inspection is golden and we’re moving forward. Now the agent will help the buyer prep for the closing, by making sure they hire a lawyer to represent their interests(THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THE BUYER DOES, except hire me.), and make some recommendations, like get the property surveyed and a plot plan made or get a title search done to intentify any possible problems with the property or claims against it or make sure the new mortgage is squared away. The buyer’s agent is also frequently on the phone with the seller’s agent to make sure they’re ready to go too.
So everything’s prepped, everything’s ready, the process is in the capable hands of the lawyers. Now the agent sits back and contemplates just where, when and how bad Mr. Murphy’s(of Murphy’s Law Fame) visit is going to be and just how to fix whatever he does. Mr. Murphy can poke his head in right up until the closing is completed, so the old saying, “You can never be surprised by something you’re waiting for.” is always the rule of the day. For the successful agent, that rule is immediately followed by an old Marine Corps adage: Improvise, Adapt & Overcome.
Focused on Home Buyers and Sellers in Brockton, Abington, Whitman, Hanson, Halifax and East Bridgewater