Profile picture for lexie1777

If I am looking at a property without an agent, is it a good idea to deal with an owner/agent

  • October 20 2010 - US
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Answers (16)

Profile picture for reba_haas
Working with an agent or an attorney will insure that you have someone looking out for your interests in the transaction. An owner/agent will not be doing so - and if they're a REALTOR (not all agents are, it's a membership, not a job description) they'll likely require you to get an agent or other representation so that there is no conflict of interest. You might consider finding an agent who is an Accredited Buyer's Representative (ABR) designee as they've had specialized training for helping buyers.

Be sure to do things such as review title, get an appraisal, have an inspection, etc. so that you can perform your own due diligence. If the State you live in requires seller disclosure documents, be sure to request them from the seller.

Good luck!
  • October 25 2010
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Get an agent asap. It's free and will save you a lot of unknown worries down the road.
  • October 25 2010
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If you aren't well versed in real estate transactions, it's a very good idea to have someone representing your best interests.  There isn't a very good reason not to have an agent, as the cost to the buyer in a transaction is $0.00.

Good luck.

Cameron
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  • October 21 2010
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It would be in your best interest to hire a buyer's agent to represent you and assist you throughout the transaction.
  • October 20 2010
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Hi Lexie,

I think your question shows you are aprehensive and understand the dynamics of the situation. A home is one of the biggest investments you will make. I would suggest using a professional to avoid legal problems later. Also, when you do an inspection or get an appraisal completed, you will want a professional to guide you with your best interests in mind.
  • October 20 2010
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Hi Lexie,
Great Question!
If you are looking at a home being sold by owner, this owner does not have to disclose any problems with the house to you. Because this owner has not signed a listing contract with a broker to disclose all defects of the house to a potential buyer. Not all owners will hide facts, but some will.
If you are realy interested in this home, tell the owner you have representation from a Buyers agent and ask if he will cooperate with the broker in paying commission. If not you can pay the agent your self.  It might be worth it to get all the disclosures from the seller.
Ask your friends who have purchased homes to recomend and agent.
Good Luck in your search!

  • October 20 2010
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I agree, get you own agent.  You need to understand that the owner/agent represents themselves and you need your own representative.
  • October 20 2010
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I would recommend using an agent. There is so much you need to know when buying a home, and so many things that could go wrong.  A good agent will not only walk you through all the necessary inspections and paperwork, they will also make sure you stay within your price range so that you are not in trouble a year from now.  Good Luck!

 
  • October 20 2010
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if you get a lemon with issues don't come crying to us...a homeowner came crying to me that they bought from builder the model without their own representation...it was the highest price paid for that particular model before the sales office closed their office and prices plummeted.
  • October 20 2010
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Profile picture for MoniqueU

just talk to the seller. and get them to reduce the price 6% since there are no agents involved.
If they are an agent, they have to go by the realtors rules. just get a copy of their errors and emmissions insurance.
you will be getting an  inspection and  a loan so your values will be secured by the bank and the appraiser. if it doesn't appraise don't buy the property or get the seller  to reduce the price. The bank won't loan on it if it doesn't appraise.
Get the bank to get you a title company with an attorney so you can get them to help you with your sales contracts, if you need the help.
plus if the bank picks the title company, they will be responsible for any extra title charges over 10% of the actual goodfaith estimate.


If you have bad credit and the seller is holding paper, then you have to deal with the sellers rules.

  • October 20 2010
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I guess you've heard it.  No it's not a good idea to use the owner/agent!!
If they insist, well.... no, it's still not worth the risk!!

I have represented both buyer and seller in many transactions - but, I am very very very careful...I also don't want to end up being accused of favoritism!  That has never happened to me.  I am incredibly honest and fair and disclose.
But, I am an exception...really! 

You COULD hire a lawyer as an alternative - if you REALLY can't resist the property...and I get that.
Best of luck to you, Christine
  • October 20 2010
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Linda's advice to get an independent inspector is absolutely correct...but do this in addition to having your own agent!!  I would not recommend anyone buy a house without a licensed inspector.
  • October 20 2010
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Which party to the transaction do you think they may favor more?  You or themselves?  Are they also the builder?  Check the permits...and be sure to have property inspected by licensed inspector to make sure the work was done properly...and make sure the square footage is accurate
  • October 20 2010
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I am not a real estate agent, however, as a lender I always encourage my clients and all consumers to have their own representation.  Employ the assistance of a buyers agent even if you have to pay for the services yourself.  There is no owner/seller who is going to put your goals above, or even equal, with their own.  Best of luck!
  • October 20 2010
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It is generally a good idea to have an agent assist you. Your agent should know the local area and help and support you in your search. Having your own agent will also even the playing field.

A good local  agent will have the experience, knowledge, resources and skill set to assist you in your purchase. They will spend time and resources to help you conclude a successful purchase. The commission for your agent is almost always already included in the sales price.



  • October 20 2010
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Profile picture for cyndi mino
Hi, Lexie

Are you looking at a For Sale By Owner home?  Is the owner a  Real Estate Agent?  You would be best served by using your own Buyers Agent since they work for your benefit, negotiate for your benfit whereas the listing agent, or owner maybe in this case, is looking out for the seller/owner.

Call me with any questions you  have on this property and let me help you.
714-349-2424
  • October 20 2010
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