What does it cost me to hire a realtor?
In most situations, sellers pay realtor commissions, so it costs you nothing to hire a realtor as a buyer.
Why would someone work for free?
We can’t work for free, of course. It is your realtor’s job to help you buy a home. When that happens, the Realtor will be paid a commission by the seller of the home. Most realtors ask you for a commitment to hire them as your buyer’s agent so that they can feel confident making an investment of time searching for a home for you. They honor that commitment by ensuring that you get the best deal on your home and that the whole process works as smoothly as possible.
CAN A REALTOR SHOW ME ANY HOUSE OR JUST THE ONES LISTED BY THEM OR THEIR COMPANY?
A realtor can show you ANY home with a real estate sign in the yard or listed with any other real estate licensee.
WILL A REALTOR FOCUS ON JUST SHOWING THEIR OWN LISTINGS OR THOSE LISTED WITH THEIR COMPAMPANY?
Absolutely not. A good realtor will look at ALL the homes available and show you the ones that best fit your needs and desires at the best price, regardless of who has them listed.
WHAT DOES BUYER AGENCY MEAN AND WHAT IS THE RIGHT TO BUY (BUYER'S AGENCY) AGREEMENT?
A buyer’s agent works solely on behalf of the buyer to promote the interests of the buyer with the utmost good faith and loyalty. A buyer’s agent is contractually — and ethically — obligated to negotiate on behalf of and act as an advocate for the buyer in all situations. A separate agreement called the “Exclusive Right to Buy Agreement” is required to create the commitment and sets forth the duties and the obligations of both the realtor and the buyer.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF BUYER AGENCY TO ME?
Right off the bat, you get a professional commitment from your agent. It tells your realtor that you are committed to use their expertise and advice when searching for your home. In return, the realtor promises to work tirelessly as your advocate and agent.
There are many other benefits to having a buyer’s agent. A buyer’s agent is legally required to put your financial interest first (this is known as being a “fiduciary”). They will also work to uncover and disclose anything they can about the seller’s circumstances in order to best inform you and improve your leverage to get you a better deal on the house. They will negotiate harder for you because they are working for you. Regardless of whether your Realtor is a buyer’s agent or a transaction broker, he/she will diligently facilitate the sale and help you throughout the process. Your real estate professional will also coordinate with other professionals involved in the transaction process. A realtor’s industry contacts can make sure that any unforeseen issues are handled reliably and quickly.
WHAT IF I DON'T SIGN A BUYER'S AGENCY AGREEMENT?
Without a Buyer’s Agency Agreement, the realtor or licensee becomes a transaction broker. In the simplest terms, think of this as a referee, versus a coach. A transaction broker will assist BOTH you and the seller throughout the real estate transaction by performing terms of any written or oral agreement, informing all parties equally, presenting all offers, and assisting the parties with any contracts, including the closing of the transaction, without being the exclusive agent or advocate for either of the parties. A transaction broker must use reasonable skill and care in the performance of any oral or written agreement and must make the same disclosures about all adverse material facts concerning a property or a buyer’s financial ability to perform the terms of a transaction and whether the Buyer intends to occupy the property. No written agreement is required for this type of representation.
DOES THE RIGHT TO BUY AGREEMENT PUT ME UNDER FINANCIAL COMMITMENT?
Depending on the arrangement you make with a realtor or licensee, you may be obligated to buy through that realtor. If the seller won’t pay (which occasionally happens with For Sale By Owner homes), you may have to pay the agent’s commission. Also, you cannot buy through another realtor or licensee while under a buyer’s agent exclusive contract. If you did this, you could end up legally bound to pay a commission to your agent as well as the other realtor or licensee.
What if I find a For Sale By Owner (FSBO)?
If you are working with a realtor and that realtor calls a FSBO seller for you and sets up an appointment, they will inquire if the seller is willing to pay a realtor a commission for bringing them a buyer. Because their ultimate goal is to sell the home and most buyers have representation, they are usually willing to do so.
WHAT IF THE PERSON SELLING "BY OWNER" DOESN'T WANT TO PAY A COMMISION?
This is one circumstance where it might cost you money to hire an agent. This should be discussed and decided upon with your realtor when determining if they will function as a buyer’s agent or a transaction broker. The Buyer’s Agency Agreement sets forth how an agent will be paid if a For Sale By Owner seller is not willing to pay their commission. Keep in mind that much of the time, your broker’s commission can be financed into your home mortgage.
IF I FIND THE HOUSE AND IT'S NOT THROUGH MY AGENT, WHY SHOULD THEY GET GET PAID?
Buying a home is a partnership. It is important to recognize that you are hiring a realtor for their overall real estate expertise; their job is not done when you find the home. Your realtor will put a lot of time and energy into finding you the right home—monitoring the market daily for potential matches, showing properties, sending letters to potential sellers, and working with other brokers to find options for you. They will manage the transaction upon offer acceptance and assist you at every step until you get to the closing table. Every house you see is part of an educational process on the road to making you recognize that the home you eventually decide on is the right house. If your realtor had not taken you to see every home you’d seen before you find “the one,” you wouldn’t have had the confidence and understanding of value, condition, price, area, etc. that make you ready to put an offer in when the time comes. When you consider all of this, it’s certainly reasonable the realtor should be compensated, no matter who finds the home.
CAN I GO LOOK AT HOMES AT OPEN HOUSES AND NEW HOME DEVELOPMENTS, OR TALK WITH BUILDERS?
Absolutely! If you attend an open house or visit a new development, always be sure to let the host/hostess know right away that you are working with a realtor and give them the name of your agent. It’s also important to avoid signing any contracts without your realtor to assist you.
WHAT ELSE SHOULD I CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING A REALTOR TO REPRESENT ME?
- Do they put your education first? Do they make you feel empowered and educated about the process?
- How quickly after an initial contact does the person follow up (a good measure of timeliness in communication)?
- Do they seem competent and well educated?
- Have they prepared well for your meeting to prove themselves to you before asking you to make a commitment?
- Are they willing to let you out of the contract if you are not satisfied with the level of service provided?
- Do they do what they say they will do (and have testimonials to prove it)?
- Are they easily reachable (by phone, email, text, or in person)?
- Do you like them, and do you feel you would enjoy working with them?
READY TO FIND YOUR NEW HOME?
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WHAT OUR CLIENTS ARE SAYING
I was looking for horse property in the Northern Colorado area. This is a difficult process, and there are limited properties available. I needed a young, aggressive team that could help me navigate through this real estate market. Dee and Leslie are very knowledgeable about horse properties and the market. They were always available to answer my questions, even on the weekends. They were the first on the scene when several properties became available, allowing me a first look. They were very professional and gave me honest feedback. I highly recommend this team and would use them again and again.
The NoCo Home Team went out of their way to help us find a house in a difficult selling environment. They fought for us when we were really interested in a certain property. We would use no one else for our home buying needs.
The NoCo Home Team was extremely helpful and tailored their service to my needs. Even though the outcome took a while to be achieved, their commitment and customer service remained consistent.
Let me start by saying that I never write reviews, until now. I am very thankful to Peter Clay and the NoCo Home Team, who made our dream to own a home in the Fort Collins area possible. In a very hot seller’s market, we had to move fast. Our situation was compounded by being out-of-state buyers. Our agent, Peter Clay, went far beyond the norm when he took it upon himself to shoot videos of a new home listing that just hit the market. We bought that house sight unseen, thanks to his efforts. We knew that he knew us and that we could trust him to find our dream home. All of the team came together to help us win and close the sale. We would recommend the NoCo Home Team to everyone. They gave us truly exceptional service and deserve the highest praise.
The team helped us to find our new home twice. The first time failed due to the problem of our loan approval. The team followed our wish list strictly and guided us through the buying process with their expertise. We are happy with the service.
Full disclosure: I do know a few of them personally; however, that made this all the better, as I know that they are hardworking, honest, and have a ton of integrity. It would honestly be hard to express how grateful I am to have worked with this team. They have an excellent system with their team in which communication is always fast and reliable. They did a great job talking us through many of the specific questions that we had, and did so without making one feel pressured. If you are serious about buying a home in Northern Colorado, this team will make it happen. They had a ton of great advice throughout the whole process, and since they’ve been doing this for a while now, their local insight was invaluable. I have a lot of gratitude and respect for this team and would recommend them to anyone without hesitation.
I can’t say enough about this team. As young, first-time home buyers, we were intimidated, uneducated, and convinced our offer wouldn’t be able to outbid anyone in Fort Collins’ competitive market. This team educated us, was honest with us, and put through our very first offer, and with their knowledge and strategic skills got our offer accepted against other “more attractive” buyers. If you have ANY anxiety about buying your first home, USE THIS TEAM!!!!!
We loved our experience with The NoCo Home Team! As first-time home buyers wanting to purchase an affordable home in the ultra-competitive area of Old Town Fort Collins, we knew nothing about the process and were prepared to be disappointed. From our initial meeting to closing day, we felt confident that we were in great hands. We truly appreciated NoCo Home Team’s professionalism, responsiveness, authenticity, and strategic abilities. We never felt pushed into looking at properties we weren’t interested in and loved how approachable every person on the team was. They moved quickly, negotiated for us, and communicated with us through every step! Thanks to The NoCo Home Team, our first-ever offer was accepted, and we’re in love with our new house in Old Town. We can’t recommend them enough!
We relocated from another state and were very happy with the team and the help they gave us to find a perfect place for us to live. We appreciated their concept of a team effort within their group and were very happy with each one of them. They were available and brought us many opportunities that eventually led to the house we bought. I would highly recommend this team.
The NoCo Home Team was amazing in helping us purchase our home. They were very clear in their communication,
they were prompt, they were tech-savvy, and they had the right contacts in the housing industry to solve all our problems.
Since we were buying a place from out of state, they would Skype/Facetime us in and show us the place so we could decide whether we were interested in the house. They were brilliant in solving problems and always put our
interests before anything else; for example, they were able to leverage their contacts and deploy a roofing contractor to change the entire roof in under 7 days to make sure we could close in time.
In short, if we have to buy or sell a place again… we will go with the NoCo Home Team.
Selling and buying property is an expensive and highly detailed process. Go with a pro. Even better, go with a pro team that is accessible, knowledgeable, professional, and personable. The NoCo Home Team is all of that – and more. As a single woman without a lot of experience selling and buying a home, I was grateful to have this team on my side. They talked me through everything and educated me in the process, and were always available to answer my questions and concerns. Peter did a great job of quickly finding me homes in a limited market; Ian patiently responded promptly to my emails and calls. And after the sale they did not disappear. I had issues with a repair that the seller did not adequately complete; the team followed up to be sure the issues were rectified to my satisfaction. I highly recommend this team, without reservation. Save yourself time, money, and stress and go with the pro team, NoCo Home Team.
I have been buying and selling real estate for over 40 years in Colorado and around the country, and I can honestly say that the NoCo Home Team is the best. They have the highest degree of professionalism and knowledge, and they are extremely intelligent and a heck of a lot of fun.