You don't need to know everything about buying and selling real estate if you hire a real estate professional who does. Henry Ford once said that when you hire people who are smarter than you are, it proves you are smarter than they are. The trick is to find the right person. For the most part, we all cost roughly the same. Why not hire a person with more education and experience than you? We're all looking for more precious time in our lives, and hiring pros gives us that time.
Agents take the spam out of your property showings and visits. A buyer's agent will schedule showings, draw up the itinerary, and take you through the city to view the homes together, so that you don't have to do everything on your own. Scheduling one tour can take hours.
Agents either possess intimate knowledge or they know where to find the industry buzz about your neighborhood. They can identify comparable sales and hand these facts to you, in addition to pointing you in the direction where you can find more data on schools, crime or demographics. For example, you may know that a home down the street was on the market for $850,000, but an agent will know it had renovations and still only sold for $785,000 after 85 days on the market and after twice having offers fall through.
Contrary to what some people believe, agents do not select prices for sellers or buyers. However, an agent will help to guide clients to make the right choices for themselves. Common mistakes buyers make are bidding blind, in which case they overpay for the home. The other extreme is low-ball offers which only offend the seller. Getting the price right is key to getting in the home.
Purchase agreements in BC can run 10 pages or more. That does not include the provincial mandated disclosures nor disclosures dictated by local custom. Most real estate files average thicknesses from one to three inches of paper. One tiny mistake or omission could land you in court or cost you thousands.
The basis for an agent's success and continued career in real estate is referrals. Few agents would survive if their livelihood was dependent on consistently drumming up new business. This emphasis gives agents strong incentives to make certain clients are happy and satisfied. It also means that an agent who stays in the business will be there for you when you need to hire an agent again. Many will periodically mail market updates to you to keep you informed and to stay in touch.
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