Why Be An Exclusive Buyer Agent?

Best Real Estate Agents For The Homebuyer

Five Reasons To Be An Exclusive Buyer Agent

Buyer’s Agency addresses one of the biggest issues facing the real estate industry, and that is the consumer perception that all agents work for the seller. Sub-agency is a traditional practice that has hurt the real estate industry’s credibility and encouraged buyers to seek other means of finding homes and getting advice. In response to consumer initiatives, the real estate industry has responded with education, designations, and a change of climate to help agents and brokers meet consumer demand for fair representation in the real estate transaction.

According to the Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council, buyer’s agency is a benefit to home buying consumers who find their homes one week faster and are shown three more properties than those who work with traditional agents. The buyer becomes a client instead of a customer.

So what does a Buyer’s Agent do?

According to the Council:

  • Evaluate the specific needs and wants of the buyer and locate properties that fit those specifications.
  • Assist the buyer in determining the amount that they can afford (pre-qualify) and show properties in that price range and locale the consumer has determined.
  • Assist in viewing properties and either accompany the client on the showings or preview the properties on behalf of the client to insure that the identified specifications are met.
  • Research the selected properties to identify any problems or issues to help the consumer in making an informed decision prior to making an appropriate offer on the property .
  • Advise the client on structuring an appropriate offer to purchase the selected property.
  • Present the offer to the sellers agent and seller on the clients behalf.
  • Negotiate on behalf of the buyer client to help obtain the identified property.
  • Keep in mind that the buyer agent will be doing so with their clients best interests in mind.
  • Review and explain all legal documents to their buyer client.
  • Recommends and assists in securing appropriate financing for the selected property.
  • Provide a list of potential qualified vendors e.g. movers, attorneys, carpenters if these services are needed by the consumer.

If this list of duties appeals to you, then here are five reasons why you should consider becoming a buyer’s agent:

    1. Stand out from the competition
      • Over one million people in the U.S. are licensed to sell real estate. Fewer than seven in a thousand are designated Accredited Buyer Representatives®.
      • The real estate practitioner has so much competition that many agents are deciding to stand out by specializing in a particular niche. Lately, there has been a proliferation of specialists – senior specialists, new home specialists, relocation specialists, and historic home specialists to name a few.
      • The buyer’s agent can capitalize on these other specialties and take them to a new level of service for the consumer.
    2. Sharpen your business focus
      • By serving only one side of the transaction, you can save time and money and become more of an expert on your “side” of the transaction.
      • You can focus your business on one targeted customer – the buyer. Instead of being all things to all people, you can now concern yourself only with buyers’ needs. This will make advertising your services much easier. You can then target specific newspapers, magazines, the Internet to promote your services. Drive your point home with buyer-targeted stationery, business cards, and your own Web site.
    3. Take advantage of hot seller’s markets
      • In busy relocation markets such as Atlanta, Dallas, and Silicon Valley, buyers need a special advocate. Listings are in short supply and buyers often can’t get to homes in time to make an offer without the “inside” networking that goes on among agents. Becoming a buyer’s agent will help you quickly build a referral network among listing agents, who know you are not in competition with them.
    4. Become a true advocate for your clients
      • Buyer’s agents, whether they are paid by the buyer or paid out of the proceeds of the transaction, become true advocates for their clients. Their ethics are no longer compromised by traditional agency practices. Since buyer’s agents only work for buyers, they don’t force in-house listings on their clients, or represent the seller as a sub-agent, unbeknownst to the buyer. The ethical dilemmas are removed.
      • They can use their skills to search for homes beyond the traditional MLS to foreclosures, REOs, and for sale by owners, opening a wider range of choices for their clients.
      • Buyer’s agents can be paid by contract just as listing agents are, and the contracts are enforceable in most states.
    5. Do it because it’s rewarding
      • As a buyer’s agent you will take part in the American Dream – helping someone own their own home. A consumer buys property perhaps one to three times in a lifetime. You have the opportunity to make each of those experiences enjoyable and profitable for your clients.

Becoming a buyer’s agent may one day be to your advantage. More and more states are legislating statutes to protect the buyer, effectively ending sub-agency as practiced by many traditional agencies. This means that even without a written agreement, the buyer’s agent represents the buyer exclusively. This is just the beginning. In the years to come, all states may disallow dual agency, forcing brokerages to become either listing agencies or buyer’s agencies.

Written by Blanche Evans, former editor with Realty Times