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Hiring the right buyer’s agent can save a lot of time and money when you are out there to buy a property.

A buyer’s agent is essentially the reverse of a seller’s agent and works on behalf of a buyer. An experienced buyer’s agent can show you several properties of your interest, negotiate on your behalf with the seller’s agent and also put you in touch with other experts for ensuring a smooth purchase, overall.

But why do I need a buyer’s agent?

Indeed, you can do your research on your own and visit open houses and auctions to find the perfect property you need. But it takes time, unless you are exceptionally lucky. A buyer’s agent, on the other hand, has access to several listings and proper market data, saving time and even money for you by pinpointing discounted, well performing properties for you.

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How do I choose my buyer’s agent?

It is easy to choose your buyer’s agent by asking these simple time-tested questions that will help you decide whether you are dealing with the right professional or not.

Lets start:

1. Are you a member of the State Real Estate Institute and The Real Estate Buyer’s Agents Association of Australia?

Be cautious and only let a fully licensed professional handle one of the most valuable purchases of your life. An unlicensed agent may offer lower fee but may also offer lower quality of service. Hiring a fully licensed buyer’s agent with at least 3 years of experience is your best bet.

2. Do you have professional indemnity insurance?

If the agent does not hold current professional indemnity insurance, you will be left without recourse if anything goes awry.

3. Do you specialise in the location and price range I am interested in?

Buyers can find properties themselves but it is the experience of a buyer’s agent that makes them so indispensable in the property buying process. Why not ask the agent for an overview of the recent sales she has conducted in your chosen area?

Further, buying off the plan is different form buying a house at an auction or a foreclosure sale. Does the agent have enough experience in dealing with the kind of property you want to buy?

While at it, do ask the agent about some previous clients you can get in touch with as well.

4. Do you also have access to off market properties for sale?

Off market properties or silent listings refer to properties that sellers decide not to market or advertise traditionally. While an off market sale may not necessarily be cheaper, an agent with access to off market properties can show you a wider range of properties with less competition from other buyers and better negotiation power in some cases.

5. Can you share your experience in guiding buyers/investors like me?

Like every home, each buyer is unique. First time buyers, investors, foreign buyers, those looking to downsize or planning to relocate or moving to a bigger house because of an expanding family, all have different criteria in mind for choosing a property. Thus, an agent who understands your situation can serve you better.

6. What is your fee basis?

An agent may charge up to $2,000 on registration and another amount, which is usually a percentage of the property price, once the sale is finalised. It may be possible to negotiate for a fixed fee in some cases. What is important here is to check what all the fee covers, including research, property evaluation, property report, inspections, checking final contracts and handling negotiations on your behalf.

7. Would you help me with my purchase by recommending lenders, insurance agents and other professionals?

A well-connected agent will not only have information about deals offered by local banks but also have a network with property inspection companies, insurance agents and reliable mortgage brokers in your area. Make sure you leverage this network to get the max out of your purchase.

Remember, being stuck with the wrong agent can make the whole process of property buying much more cumbersome and time consuming.  So don’t be shy of asking questions to choose the best agent for finding your dream property.

When making one of the biggest purchases in your life, you deserve to partner with the best. To ensure you get the most competitive home loan deals in the market and are guided right while financing your home, HashChing brings to you a panel of expert brokers. These brokers will not only answer all your home loan queries but also provide pre-negotiated home loan rates you can compare online.

 

By Vidhu Bajaj

 

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HashChing is helping Australians by providing access to the pre-negotiated home loan deals. Obligation free consultation with one of our partner brokers might save you time, hassle and money.

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