Posted 2 months ago THE HOME BUYING & SELLING PROCESS - THE BUYER AGREEMENT Buying a home is a large undertaking. Transferring title involves lawyers, title companies, escrow companies, and local county records. The attention by these businesses tell the importance of the details in this legal transaction. Agent representation is crucial, professional help you need each step of the way. The idea of owning your own home is one of the greatest thrills in life, especially for first time home owners. A few reasons why you may buy a home are ownership vs. renting, work relocation, upsizing to meet family growth, a desire to improve your lifestyle, a change of environment, or downsizing to meet changes in family or finances. Whatever the case may be, the process to buy a home is the same. If you don’t initially begin with an Agent, your first step in looking for a home may be an online search. You will likely know the location or area you are interested in and have some idea of the price range you can afford. Online real estate websites like Zillow now let you search on a map. You can also search for specifics like number of bedrooms, bathrooms, garage size, living area size, lot size, year built, etc. Once you find a home you are interested in, you will need to contact an Agent because nearly all homes online are listed by a Seller’s Agent. The Seller’s Agent works for the Seller and does not have your best interest at heart. Online websites will suggest or select an Agent for you to contact. These Agents pay the websites to be connected with you. Your alternative is to independently choose an Agent yourself. The first thing that your Agent will do is find the home in the multiple-listing-service (MLS). This will give you and your Agent more details than you can find online. Additionally, your Agent can search for more homes exclusively listed by other Agents that meet your criteria and set up appointments for you to tour each home. All of the services provided to you by your Agent are a result of your Agent’s authority as a licensed professional. Your Agent is also bound by law under an oath of obedience, loyalty, disclosure, confidentiality, accounting, and reasonable care. Once you have contracted your Agent, he can only work for you in the transaction unless you agree otherwise. To obtain your Agent’s service, you will enter a Buyer’s Representation Agreement. This agreement is a standard contract that ensures your Agent will only represent you. Normally, you won’t pay any commission for your Agent’s services. You are only obligated to pay commission if the seller refuses or fails to pay it for the home you want. You will want to only select homes that the seller is willing to pay all commissions, which is the most common form of listing on the market. The contract includes a timing component for the beginning and end of the agreement. If you do not find a home you want by the time the agreement expires, there are no further obligations for you. However, the agreement can be terminated at any time by either party through mutual consent. The highest risk in Buying a home is to buy it without an Agent. This is tempting when the home you want is not represented by a Seller’s Agent (i.e., For Sale by Owner). This owner is likely not willing to pay commission for your Agent. In this case, your best choice is to have your Agent convince the Seller to pay the commission or pay it yourself since not doing so exposes you to great risk in the closing and title transfer process. Just as the Seller will normally be represented by his own Agent, you should always have your own Agent when buying a home. Considering that the cost is almost always paid by the Seller, this service is indispensable and makes your home buying experience the best it can be.