You’re interested in purchasing a Lake Havasu home. So, you visit a real estate website like Zillow, Trulia or even LoriDee.com. After sorting through dozens of listings, you find a few homes that really flip your switch. You want to take a closer look. What is the correct home buyer protocol when it comes to talking to a listing agent? Can you call them directly or is this frowned upon? Before you step on anyone’s toes, read my tips below.
Home Buyer Protocol
Can I Call the Listing Agent Directly?
Short answer? Yes. However, if you hired an agent to represent you, home buyer protocol suggests that it would be better to contact your agent about the property/properties you want to see. Then, let them talk to the listing agent themselves. Are you just interested in looking at the place but are not ready to buy quite yet? Clearly state that you’re just looking around and haven’t employed an agent as of yet (if that’s the case). Tell them that you’re just doing some early homework to see what’s available on the market right now but aren’t quite in the buying stages yet. Ask them when they’ll be available to show the property to you. Let them know you’ll work around their schedule. Don’t be afraid to ask pertinent buyer questions while they take you on a tour of the property.
Do I Have to Sign an Agreement Just to View the Property?
Viewing a property individually is similar to an open house. You don’t need to sign anything to enter an open house. Likewise, you usually don’t need to sign a contract to view a property with a listing agent. However, they may ask you to sign an agency disclosure statement. This simply outlines who the agent represents (in this case, the seller) and what responsibilities they have when showing you the property. Make sure you look over and completely understand any document you are asked to sign before you sign it.
When Should I Hire My Own Representative?
If you’re just looking around to get a lay of the land, you don’t necessarily need a buyer’s agent. However, when you get serious about finding a Lake Havasu home to purchase, it behooves you to find a qualified agent to represent you. Agent’s commissions (which run around 5-6% of the purchase price) usually get paid on the seller’s end of the transaction. So, while it may not cost you anything to hire a buyer’s agent, it could cost you plenty if you don’t. Why? Because their knowledge of the market and expertise in the field help you when it comes to negotiating a deal. Contact me when you’re ready to start looking for your next Lake Havasu home.