Do I have to use the real estate agent on the propertys sign? Absolutely not! A lot of the time buyers think they need to use the agent whose sign is out on the front lawn of the property that they want to purchase. This is not always in your best interest. For years a real estate agent always represented the seller of the property (listing agent) and owed their fiduciary duty to them. A number of years ago, buyer agency was established in Maine and now buyers are allowed to be represented by their own agent (buyer agent). Each has a fiduciary duty to their client and must look out for their best interest. Maine also allows for Disclosed Dual Agency which allows the listing agent to work with you as a buyer agent but is only able to offer limited representation on either side. First it must be agreed upon by both parties before an agreement is signed and then the dual agent is not allowed to discuss price, terms, or motivation of either of the parties. It is usually best to have the conversation before you look at any property and find a buyer agent to represent you in what may be one of the biggest purchases in your lifetime. Using a buyers agent can save you a ton of time, hassle and expense. A buyers agent will help you find listings and tour houses with you. Remember that real estate agents may be more knowledgeable than you about the neighborhood and surrounding communities. They can also give you access to more listings including those For Sale by Owner, or FSBO. A buyers agent can prevent you from overpaying on a property and help you decide on the right offer. In my opinion the most important benefit of a buyers agent is that they are trained to negotiate the best price and sale conditions for you and not the propertys seller. Your buyers agent can serve as a buffer between you and a pushy sellers agent or the seller themselves. This alone can save you thousands of dollars over the time that you own your property. Furthermore, the buyers agent can put you in touch with mortgage lenders and home inspectors, and assist with other steps in the home buying process. Most buyers feel that they will have to pay a buyers agent to represent them. As the homebuyer, you may not have to pay this, since the buyers agent fee is usually paid by the seller (and taken out of the sellers agents commission). Since that is true, there is no reason not to get the professional advice that will help you avoid some of the pitfalls in the purchase of your new home or investment property. If you have a need for a buyers agent to represent you, please dont hesitate to contact one of our trusted professionals!
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