One of the first and most important steps in buying a home is selecting a real estate agent to assist you. In most cases the agent you work with has a fiduciary relationship with the sellers of the homes you see. That’s understandable, since it is the seller who pays the real estate commission. However, today, more and more buyers are selecting an agent to represent their interest in real estate tranactions. This usually does not cost the buyer anything because the seller has, most likely, already agreed to pay a commission for the sale of their house. When you have your own agent that agent then owes his/her fiduciary responsibility to you as the buyer.
A good agent will help to facilitate your home purchase by making your home search more efficient and productive by his or her current market knowledge. Also, a real estate professional’s knowledge of the loan and escrow process will help to assure that your dream home closes on time and with a minimum of problems.
Here are some questions you might ask an agent you are considering:
How knowledgeable are you with homes in this area?
Does your firm belong to the local multiple listing service?
Is real estate your full-time occupation?
Are you familiar with a variety of financing options?