| A change that has swept the real estate industry in the past several years has been the growth of the buyer's agent. Before the advent of the buyer's agent,the agent was responsible primarily to the seller. The seller paid the final commission and signed a listing contract designating the agent to represent them in exchange for the commission. All agents involved in a transaction could only be devoted to the one side of the transaction - the seller's side! This was true even when an agent had only been working with the buyer, and was responsible for writing and presenting the offer to purchase!
What did that mean to the buyer? It meant that if their agent knew proprietary information about the seller that could help the buyer in formulating their offer, the agent was not allowed to share it with the buyer.
It wasn't until real estate buyers began to demand fair and equal representation of their interests that the concept of buyer's agency took hold. Today you will find many real estate agents that specialize in representing buyers. In most cases, the commission is still paid to the buyer's agent by the seller, even though your are benefiting from the knowledge and experience of the buyer's agent representing you.The Buyer's agent's commission usually amounts to half of the total fee that the seller has agreed to pay their listing agent upon the close of the transaction. How can you locate an established buyer's agent? You can start by looking for agents that advertise their specialty as part of their promotional advertising. The most common designation for buyer's agents is the ABR, or Accredited Buyer Representative designation, which indicates that the agent has undergone extensive training and has experience in representing buyers.
| Services a buyer's agent should provide:
- Providing detailed information on current market activity and current listings
- Keeping you informed of new listings that hit the market
- Coordinating property showings and either accompanying you on the showings or previewing properties on your behalf
- Reviewing and explaining all pertinent legal forms and contracts with you
- Researching the seller and their property to discern any problems or unique issues that might influence your decision to make a particular offer
- Advising you on how to write an offer and what to include in that offer
- Negotiating for you with a commitment to protect your best interests
- Assisting you with arranging financing
- Representing you by keeping your personal and financial position confidential and being willing to offer you anonymity if requested