What Real Estate Agents Do For Buyers
Buying a home can be an overwhelming experience, especially if you’re a first-time home buyer You may think you’re simply shopping for your next (or first) home, but it goes way beyond that. A real estate agent does more than just help homeowners sell their homes, and may be just the person you need to help you navigate the waters of the real estate market and find the home perfect for you.
It’s safe to say first-time home buyers may not fully understand long-term property values. Because the typical first-time home buyer will not buy their dream home, a real estate agent may be able to help them understand resale value at the time of buying. Real estate agents can help identify issues that may interfere with resale and even give you suggestions for increasing the home’s value.
As a first-time home buyer you may not know what you want when you begin looking. Real estate agents know and understand families and homes and can give crucial advice as to whether a home will work or not for your family. Just because you like a house doesn’t mean it will work for you, and a real estate agent can help you figure out the best fit.
The most important job of a real estate agent is to negotiate a good deal on your behalf. They should be willing to educate you on the housing market and be able to give comparisons on other homes that have sold, how long a house has been on the market, what houses haven’t sold, and any other activity going on in the housing market. In the end, it is up to you what price and terms you wish to offer, but you should be able to rely on the real estate agent to provide accurate information and advice.
Beyond the initial offer, the real estate agent can also help negotiate terms and price after home inspections, appraisals and any other time between contract and closing.
What Real Estate Agents Can’t Do
Real estate agents are definitely helpful to buyers in a variety of ways, but because they are governed by fair housing laws, there are some things they can’t do.
- Real estate agents cannot discriminate. They cannot steer buyers to or from a property based on the area’s demographics. They cannot divulge racial, religious, age or other demographic information about the neighborhood, but can direct you to websites or other references to find the information for yourself.
- Real estate agents can only talk about the house, not the people.
- Real estate agents are not lawyers, home inspectors, mold experts, financial advisors, or tax advisors and cannot give advice on these matters. Most real estate agents will tell you to seek the services of these professionals if you have questions.
An experienced real estate agent should be able to help you realize the value in a home. By providing education on the local market and walking hand-in-hand with you through the entire buying process, a real estate agent can be a definite asset.