Why should you hire a real estate agent to buy a new construction home? There are many reasons, but the main one is that the builder’s agent will not protect your best interests.
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If you are interested in buying a new construction home, should you work with a real estate agent?
Builders like Richmond American or Taylor Morrison will have an office you can walk into and model homes for you to look at. Do you need an agent with you when you walk through the door? Yes, and there are a few reasons why.
The agent you meet at the builder’s site is there to represent the builder. They are all wonderful people who are great at their job, but the bottom line is they are not there to protect your best interests. You need someone there with you to represent you.
If you want to look at model homes and you walk into the office without an agent, they will ask you to sign a form. If you sign with the builder and decide that you would like to buy from them, it is now too late to bring your real estate agent into the transaction. You already signed without them on that first visit.
To avoid this issue, make sure your agent goes with you. Your agent can sign you in. If you decide not to buy from that builder, then there’s no problem. If you do decide to purchase from that builder, your agent will be able to represent you.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the builder has pre-approved lenders who offer great incentives to work with them. It’s no secret that the builder and the lender are a team, and you can get fantastic incentives. However, if you have your own agent, they may know other lenders that could be a better choice than the one recommended by the builder.
The contract with the builder is completely designed to protect the builder and their interest. That’s okay, but it is important to have someone there to tell you the black-and-white of that contract, not the spun version the builder will present. If you listen to the builder and you decide to cancel the deal after you’ve signed the dotted line, there is a very good chance that you will lose your earnest money.
“THE BUILDER’S AGENT IS THERE TO PROTECT THE BUILDER’S BEST INTERESTS, NOT YOURS.”
When it comes to taxes, the builder will quote taxes on the unimproved land. To get an idea of what your property taxes will be once the home is built, your agent will do some research to figure out what your tax bill will be 12 or 24 months from now.
The public report is a critical piece of this transaction. I’ve seen clients walk in ready to sign a contract that says, “You have read the public report.” The builder agent may say, “This just shows that I gave you a copy of the report.”
Don’t fall for this; the contract says that you have read through the public report. It’s a very important document that you need to read.
I also recommend that you walk your lot to see if it will be a good fit for you when all of those other homes are built down the road. Things may be wide open now, but your agent can help you make sure that the lot will work for you in the future as well.
As your real estate agent, we are there to protect you and your investment. You may not plan on selling this new home for another 20 years, but we can still give you a little advice when it comes to resale value. You never know—you may need to move sooner than you think. When it’s time to choose your cabinets and countertops, your agent can help you increase your resale value so that your home will be adored by prospective buyers in the future.
Those are just a few main reasons you should absolutely work with a real estate agent when buying a new construction home. If you have any other questions about this process, just give me a call or send me an email. I would be happy to help you!