Why you need a Realtor® when buying a home from a builder

Posted on August 18, 2018MLIVE

When building a new home, the general school of thought is that buyers will be taken care of by the construction company. The builder will provide the lot, let you choose floor plans and help you select options for finishing touches like doors, cabinets, countertops, appliances, utilities and lighting.

Simple, right?

Experts will tell you not so much. There is still a need for the knowledge and experience a member of the Greater Regional Alliance of Realtors® can bring to the table. After all, who is going to look out for you during the process?

“Building a house can be a part-time job because there is so much to think about and stay on top of,” said GRAR Chief Executive Officer Julie Rietberg. “It seems easy on the surface, but once you dig deeper, it becomes apparent you need someone who knows what to expect.

“It’s a partnership between the buyer, the agent and the builder.”

In any real estate transaction, it’s important to have a professional on your side.

These six reasons highlight just some of the ways a Realtor® serves as your partner in the purchase of a new home.

Vetting the builder: A Realtor® has been in the housing market and understands the quality, value and craftsmanship West Michigan builders provide. They know how area builders work, who has a track record of success building buyers’ dream homes and the reputations companies earn. Anyone can talk a good game, but a GRAR Realtor® knows who can back it up.

Signing the contracts: New construction contracts are lengthy, detailed accounts of what to expect and how the process works, all of which are likely new to the buyers. A Realtor® is familiar with most purchase agreements and can easily digest the details, the expectations, the demands and the timelines. When making big decisions, it’s important to have someone on your side, looking out for your interests.

Negotiating the price: Realtors® know where you’ll find the most wiggle room when it comes to negotiations. Builders are more likely to play for closing costs or offer incentives than to lower their sales prices because that sets a precedent for future buyers. Contrary to homeowners, builders are not attached to the property and they know the longer a house is unsold, the less revenue they have. Know the adage “you don’t know what you don’t know?” That applies here because you can’t negotiate what you’re not aware of

Are upgrades a good idea?: When you’re building your new house, there are many decisions to be made and the floor-plan options and upgrades are numerous. A Realtor® can tell you if that den makes sense, if you’ll see a return on investment for adding marble countertops or if that indoor basketball court, which sounds great, is actually a bad idea. Your Realtor® can also advise what upgrades may be able to wait until after you live in the home and get a feel for the space.

Accountability for all: While your Realtor® is looking out for you, the professional standards also make them a third party representative who can hold each the builder and the buyer to the contract. It is an accountability advantage that benefits and protects all in the transaction. It sets a clear path, establishes channels of communication and forms a way to resolve any conflicts.

Your Realtor® is free: Using a buyer’s agent doesn’t cost a penny and won’t inhibit builders from working with clients. Many appreciate an extra set of eyes and have built in the cost into their marketing and building budgets. Your Realtor® is paid commission out of the builder’s pocket.

Talk to a member of the Greater Regional Alliance of Realtors® before you start working with a builder and discover more about how they can help you during the construction of your new home.

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