You may be of the opinion that you don’t need a real estate agent and that using one will increase the cost of buying your new home.
The fact is that a real estate agent’s fee is usually paid by the seller of the house. So, as a buyer, you can get the services of a professional real estate agent without having to pay directly for it. Confirm this in any paperwork or contract a real estate agent may provide because policies vary widely by state and by company. Be sure to ask about fees when interviewing agents.
Most of these agents can work with both buyers and sellers, but they often specialize in working with one or the other. Make sure the agent you choose has experience working with buyers and no down payment transactions.
Be careful if you’re talking to a real estate agent and they don’t seem to recognize terms like “Down Payment Assistance Program.”
Start making a list of potential real estate agents to interview with references from your lender, friends, and family.
A lender reference is great because you get the services of people who have worked together in the past and are already familiar with each other’s systems. This can help avoid surprises or last-minute roadblocks.
Questions to ask while interviewing an agent:
Please explain your rates.
Do you know of any financing programs without a down payment?
Have you been involved with no down payment buyers in the past?
Would you mind providing sample contracts so I can review them?
Does it clearly state in the contract who will pay your fees?
How long have you been a real estate agent?
Do you work primarily with buyers or sellers?
I am looking for a house in the areas of ______. How familiar are you with those areas?
What specific steps would you take to help me find the home I’m looking for?
You should also try to get an idea of these factors while talking to the agent.
– Does this person have good negotiation skills?
– Do you think this agent is trying to understand your situation so that he can adequately represent you to sellers?
– How much knowledge does the agent have about the mortgage markets?