Why do I need a Buyer's Agent?

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I be sure that you will represent only my interests?

I specialize in helping buyers. My job as a buyer's agent is to represent you and your interests in a real estate transaction. Sellers are not my concern, unless I am also the listing agent. Sellers are represented by their listing agent. They have a contract whereby the agent agrees to market the property for the seller and the relationship between seller and agent is defined. In the same way, I ask all of my buyers to sign an Agency Representation Agreement which gives me permission to represent you and outlines all aspects of our relationship. The contract is a standard document produced by the Arkansas Real Estate Commission.

How will you keep my business confidential?

Absolutely no one, inside or outside of my office, will ever hear your business from me without your permission. Your motivation to buy, goals, finances, creditworthiness, transaction details, I keep them strictly confidential.

Do I pay your commission?

Only indirectly. On MLS-listed properties, the Sellers pay all broker commissions. As a buyer's agent, I receive a portion of the commission paid by the seller, which is already included in the purchase price. There are times when you may be required to pay a partial commission if you purchase an unlisted "For Sale by Owner" property. In this case, I will always tell you what commission I have negotiated with the seller prior to viewing the property.

What if I don't want to spend as much as I could afford?

A bank pre-qualifies or pre-approves you for a certain amount of money. This represents the maximum (on paper) that the bank feels you can spend on a house. However, if your comfort level, in terms of what you feel you can realistically afford, is lower, I will show you houses which are at that lower price, so you don't stay awake nights worrying if you can make the payments. I work on your behalf, so what you tell me you want is what guides me in your home search.

What will you do to get me the lowest possible price for the property I want?

Whatever it takes that is legal and permissible under the Realtor Code of Ethics. However, in practical terms, I will provide you with a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) which will indicate the prices of similar homes which have sold recently in the neighborhood of the house you wish to purchase. This will help us determine a fair price for the home. In addition, I check the County Records for that home to determine how much the current owners paid for it and how long ago they bought it, which gives an estimate of how much "wiggle room" the sellers have for negotiating. If they purchased the home six months or even a year ago at a particular price, there is much less negotiating room than if they purchased the home 10 or 15 years ago at a substantially reduced price. With the knowledge determined from the CMA and the County Records, we can establish a negotiating strategy to try to get you the home at the best price possible under current market conditions.

What professional help will I need to make a prudent purchase decision?

You have already taken the most important step toward professional help in purchasing a new home or other piece of property, that is, to search out a buyer's agent. I can also provide you with names of other professionals you may need to protect your interests. The chief of these is a professional home inspector, especially if you purchase an older home. If you have not yet visited a bank, I can provide the names of local bankers whose expertise fits the type of property you wish to purchase and who provide competitive interest rates. Similarly with insurance agents, title companies, repair people, etc.