Why Use a Buyer's Agent?
We’re in a competitive seller’s market right now with more buyers wanting to purchase a San Francisco condo than there are condos for sale. Smart buyers need every advantage to get what they want for the best price.
That means having an agent in your corner. First, let’s review "agency" from a real estate perspective.
A buyer’s agent is a real estate agent who represents real estate buyers. He/she advises you and negotiates on your behalf.
A listing agent, on the other hand, is a real estate agent who represents the seller and negotiates on his/her behalf.
A dual agent represents both the buyer and the seller in the same real estate transaction. He/she has limitations due to fiduciary obligations to both the buyer and seller.
It doesn’t take rocket science to figure out that having your own buyer’s agent can give you a distinct advantage in a tight market. At the very least, it takes the guesswork out of the equation.
Visiting Sales Offices
Did you know that when you visit the sales office for new condos in SF development and sign in for the tour, you are usually waiving your option to have an independent real estate agent represent you (and get paid for it)? The realtors on-site at model homes are licensed professionals who work for the builder - in essence "listing agents". Their job is to sell you on the community and help you select the right model for your needs.
If you visit a sales office without a buyer's agent, you will be weighing the options without the unbiased advice of an independent real estate agent. Here's some things a buyers agent might be able to help you with in a new home transaction:
· Are the upgrades reasonably priced?
· Can you upgrade later, through a third party, and save money?
· Does the financing they present offer you the best possible rate?
· Will the builder negotiate?
· How do new development prices compare to the resale market?
Dealing with Listing Agents
The agent with the name and number on the for sale sign works for the owner as a Listing Agent. While it’s true that the listing agent probably knows more about the property than another agent, their fiduciary responsibility is weighted in favor of the seller. They have to answer your questions honestly but do you really know what questions to ask?
The "unfairness" issue of buyers having no representation caused the real estate industry to create the concept of a "dual agent," described above. Though there are many real estate transactions that go through with a dual agent, you'll want to go into this arrangement fully aware - ask the dual agent to explain how this relationship works.
Finding an Agent at an Open House
Walking into open houses is one way to find an agent. Again, they work for the seller, but they may also act as your buyer's agent for other properties. Although it’s a step in the right direction, looking for a buyer’s agent this way is hit or miss.
Looking for an Experienced Buyer's agent.
We are experts in the San Francisco condo and loft market, and know our SF neighborhoods. Use our website to see what's out there in the San Francisco condo market and Contact us with questions when you’re ready to get going. We're happy to have you interview us to determine that we are as experienced and committed to your real estate success as we say we are. And if what you’re looking for isn’t out there yet, we’ll keep our eyes peeled for properties coming on the market and keep you posted.
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Though not guaranteed, information and statistics in this article have been acquired from sources believed to be reliable.
Category San Francisco Condo Buyers Guide
The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing based on color, race, religion, national origin, sex, familial status, or disability.
Information Deemed Reliable But Not Guaranteed. The information being provided is for consumer's personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. This information, including square footage, while not guaranteed, has been acquired from sources believed to be reliable.
Last Updated: 2021-08-03