According to NAR, 87% of homebuyers still choose to hire realtors. You might think that not hiring an agent will save you money, but being your own agent can actually cost you more in the long run. Also keep in mind that time is a resource, too. Hiring an agent can save you lots of time and spare you the hassle of juggling all your personal and home buying tasks.
1. Provide you with excellent options – It could be a tiring and overwhelming experience when you're house hunting, and as a buyer, there would be a good deal of emotions involved when choosing the home that you like and fits you and your family’s needs. On top of that, you also have to get a good deal that would fit your budget. An agent who is knowledgeable in the market and duly takes note of your preferences will make the buying process more comfortable for you. Given that, they could give you a list of homes to visit and provide you with advice on the neighborhood, surrounding schools in the area, spaces for recreation, weather/season hazards, and other valuable information that you need to know.
2. Guide you through the whole process – It’s useful to educate yourself on the buying process, but there might be real estate jargon and some skills that only professional real estate agents would know and could play out well. It’s not a walk in the park to buy a home, and one of the most important things that you have to work through is examining a contract from the seller (and in some cases, making one of your own with the help of a lawyer) to protect you and would enable you to back out from the deal if certain conditions are not met. Contracts and conditions are what experienced agents work with on a regular basis, so you could trust them to know what you should and shouldn’t agree to, and what important conditions you have to lay out as a buyer. A good agent will also willingly suggest to you that you have the property be inspected by professional home inspectors so that you can know if there are any repairs to be made.
3. Negotiate on behalf of you – Negotiating between a buyer and a seller is always tricky. An agent will act as a messenger for both sides and can properly communicate your preferences and apprehensions about the property that you’re buying – without offending the seller and putting the deal at stake.
4. Monitor your loan commitments – One of the most important things to ensure when home buying is financing your home through a mortgage. According to The US Federal Reserve Survey of Consumer Finances, home-secured debt remains the most common type of debt held by families in the US. A good agent will have a huge network of lenders and other professionals that could make even the loaning process – from being pre-approved to being pre-qualified – safe and secure for you. If you’re a first-time buyer, it’s common to get yourself into mortgage mistakes, but an excellent agent would monitor your loan status and advise you on how to protect your approval. A good agent will remind you to put significant purchases on hold and to avoid taking new loans before you close the deal on buying a home.
5. Get you through the closing – There is still is a pile of things involved in closing a home purchase deal, such as dealing with closing costs that include lender fees, insurance fees, and title fees. A diligent agent will walk you through everything that needs to be done upon closing and will tie loose ends for a smooth transaction.