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Should I use a Realtor if I'm Buying from a Home Builder?

“If I’m buying a new house directly from the builder, why do I need a Realtor?” Well, according to Houston Realtor® Patrick Welsh, an unrepresented buyer can be at a real disadvantage by deciding not to use an experienced real estate professional.

“As a Realtor, many people think I’m just trying to salvage a commission by recommending that a buyer retain my services for a purchase from a builder. All too often buyers think that they don’t need a Realtor to represent them since they can find the builder all by themselves, drive right up, negotiate the deal and move in!

My job is to represent the buyer’s best interest and help them through the transaction with the least degree of hassle and frustration. And our goal is to get the buyer the most value for the least money. I’ve heard many a buyer say they don’t need an agent before a transaction, but I’ve never had a represented buyer say to me at the conclusion that they were sorry they had me at their side representing them. The least important part of our job is driving the buyers around to look at houses (although it is important); our real value comes later in negotiating and working through the process on behalf of our client.

Representation. The builder representative at the model home may look and sound like a real estate agent there to help you. However, the builder rep is a salesperson for the builder, and as such represents the builder’s best interest. I love the analogy I heard recently that when a buyer deals directly with that rep (saving the builder the buyer’s agent commission) it’s like the buyer paying for the builder to not represent them. Real estate agents and Realtors are licensed professionals bound by law and professional ethics while builder reps are not constrained by those requirements.

Negotiation. Sure the buyer can negotiate effectively. Buyer negotiations can be effective, as long as the buyer knows what incentives are typical and customary, how to compare alternative financing, who pays for what (title costs, appraisals, inspections, additional warranties, surveys, closing costs, etc.), what upgrades cost and how to apply builder concessions, and many other issues. Realtors make it look so easy by asking questions that the buyer doesn’t know to ask.

Inspections. This is a big one. As a buyer’s Realtor, I insist that my client always get a home inspection. The number and severity of new home defects often rival resale home problems. The builder rep is not likely to make any such demands of the buyer. This issue alone justifies our involvement in the transaction. Buyers will often think that the new home warranty will take care of all their problems. That is simply not the case. Here is a real world example. On new, high end property, my inspector flagged a number of items including the incorrect installation of the air conditioner systems located in the attic. The builder argued that everything was in order. After our insistence of a problem the HVAC contractor admitted the error and repaired the problem. Turns out the mounting brackets used to dampen the vibration were installed upside down, thereby focusing the vibration to the structure rather than reducing the vibration. That family might have lived in the home a lifetime with unnecessary noise and vibration were it not for the inspector.

Buyer Agent Cost. That typical 3 percent commission comes from somewhere right? Nobody charges the buyer the commission; the seller pays it. Reputable and honest builders absorb this cost as part of their expense base. There are occasional builders that skew prices to compensate, but this is considered to be both unfair and unethical. In fact today, many builders are paying bonuses and incentives to agents above the standard commission structure. As Realtors we are very often sought after components of the real estate transaction.

The Sequence. This can become a bit tricky. Builders can become resistant to buyers who show up at the builder site and let them think they are unrepresented by a Realtor. The best process is to either shop with your Realtor or at least immediately inform the buyer’s rep that you are working with an agent and that you are represented. Maybe offer the agent’s card or at least name and company as you ‘register’ with the builder. This insures that the agent is ‘in the loop’. It is strongly recommended that you do not do the paperwork or contract without your agent being present to review and advise.

My comments here are not meant to encompass all of the benefits of having a Realtor represent a buyer, nor all the buyer issues that could arise. This is just a brief overview, and there is much more to it. However, I hope this serves as a short course for buyers to give them cause to consider what is in their best interest.”

Source: realtor.com

Phone(972) 333-0301

Email[email protected]

Fax(972) 382-5017

Address Lisa Biddle
0615464
Lisa Biddle Realty Group - KW N Country
604 W White Street B
Anna, TX 75409

New Construction May 24, 2022
22
Listed
48
Avg. DOM
$361.05
Avg. $ / Sq.Ft.
$857,500
Med. List Price
22 Properties
Page 1 of 2
$660,000
Neighborhood: Arrow Brooke
4
Beds
3F11/2
Baths
3,465
Sq.Ft.
2019
Year Built
5
Days on Site
20063270
MLS
Better than New Beauty on a corner lot within the highly regarded Arrow Brooke Community. The floor plan is open and spacious. As you enter you walk by a study with French Doors, a dinning room and...
$569,000
Neighborhood: Stone Ranch
4
Beds
2
Baths
2,245
Sq.Ft.
2018
Year Built
5
Days on Site
20063315
MLS
Why wait for new construction? Move in now to an almost New Bloomfield Home in Wylie ISD. Luxury upgrades include extended granite kitchen and bar, large yard with privacy fence on a corner lot and...
$255,000
Neighborhood: Jones & Wainrights Add
3
Beds
2
Baths
1,409
Sq.Ft.
2018
Year Built
6
Days on Site
20054028
MLS
Move-in Ready and just lovely! This beauty was built in 2018'.
Granite and Stainless Steel Kitchen plus tray ceiling with crown molding in this 17' Living Room.
Large back yard for your...
$1,025,000
Neighborhood: Phillips Creek
4
Beds
4F11/2
Baths
3,829
Sq.Ft.
2019
Year Built
7
Days on Site
20056428
MLS
The Newbern plan opens up as soon as you walk through the front door to soaring ceilings, looking up at the catwalk. The study has vaulted ceilings & the secondary bed down has walk-in closet, &...
$875,000
Neighborhood: NBKW CHAPEL DOWNS
3
Beds
3F11/2
Baths
3,095
Sq.Ft.
2019
Year Built
7
Days on Site
20061826
MLS
Stunning home in the heart of Dallas! The Court at Chapel Downs are built with their own sleek and sophisticated style. Within proximity to Midway Hollow, each home has been individually designed...
$479,610
Neighborhood: Highpoint Hill
5
Beds
3
Baths
2,168
Sq.Ft.
2018
Year Built
10
Days on Site
20058231
MLS
Previous Gehan Model Home Single-Story with 5 Bedrooms, 3 Bathrooms, 2 Car Garage and so much more! This home has a covered back patio, spacious pantry, open concept from kitchen to family. An...
2
Beds
2F11/2
Baths
2,773
Sq.Ft.
2019
Year Built
13
Days on Site
20056048
MLS
The Corvalla is a three-story luxury development of single-story residences located in the Stonebriar neighborhood of Frisco. Characterized by resort-inspired living, The Corvalla offers high-end...
$850,000
Neighborhood: Village At Twin Creeks Ph Four
4
Beds
3F11/2
Baths
3,122
Sq.Ft.
2019
Year Built
14
Days on Site
20052629
MLS
GORGEOUS Shaddock Home Model that has never been occupied. Painted brick home with stunning paved walk is located next to a greenbelt and amenity center! 20 ft foyer with elegant staircase welcomes...
$585,182
Neighborhood: Trinity Falls
3
Beds
2F11/2
Baths
2,357
Sq.Ft.
2019
Year Built
20
Days on Site
20049714
MLS
MLS# 20049714 - Built by Coventry Homes - December completion! ~ This lovely 2-story home will amaze you with everything it has to offer. Walk inside the foyer and discover a hallway leading to the...
Open 5/29
1034 Randolph Drive Desoto, TX 75115
$715,000
Neighborhood: Elerson Trace
5
Beds
3F11/2
Baths
3,520
Sq.Ft.
2019
Year Built
26
Days on Site
20044830
MLS
MLS# 20044830 - Built by Kindred Homes - June completion! ~ Welcome home to Villa floorplan in our highly sought after community of Elerson Track Park in DeSoto. As our Model for this community this...
3
Beds
3F11/2
Baths
2,231
Sq.Ft.
2018
Year Built
34
Days on Site
20026130
MLS
Spectacular gorgeous views of Dallas from your private vast terrace w fireplace available only at Bleu Ciel. This 33-story modern and elegant building was designed by Paris based Jean-Michel Wilmotte...
$390,000
Neighborhood: City Dallas
3
Beds
2F11/2
Baths
1,820
Sq.Ft.
2018
Year Built
34
Days on Site
20038651
MLS
Fabulous 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath home built in 2018. Close to Bishop Arts District & Wynnewood Village. Enjoy a custom made kitchen with All Stainless Steel Appliances. Features recessed lighting,...
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NTREIS data last updated May 24, 2022.