Beware of Hiring Your Listing Agent to Help You Find Your New Home

You love the greater Wilmington area and can’t imagine living anywhere else, but your current home isn’t meeting your needs and it’s time to find a new one. Soon, you’ll find yourself talking to listing agents and reviewing a listing agreement.  (If you want to be connected with a great listing agent, check out why it’s worth giving us a call even though we don’t take listings). At some point in that conversation, the agent will likely offer you a break on the listing commission if you agree to use his/her services when you purchase the new home. It’s going to sound tempting, but before you make the commitment, stop and consider this:

If you want someone who can advocate for you in every situation, you’ll need an agent who works at an agency that doesn’t take listings.  That’s because every agent who works with a listing company is obligated to look out for their seller clients (even if they don’t personally know the seller.)  So, they can’t advocate for you if you fall in love with one of their company’s listings.The more listings their company has, the higher the likelihood of you finding yourself in a dual agency situation, which is great for the listing company because they earn a double commission.  Not so much for you. If you’d like to see ALL the properties on the market and be secure in knowing your buyer’s agent has no motivation to sell you one over another, you need an Exclusive Buyers Agent. Still, money is money and a couple thousand is a lot.  However, is the $2,000-4,000 you’ll save on the selling commission worth the risk of finding yourself in a dual agency situation where your agent may have to stop advising and advocating for you? Which do you think will cost you more in the long run?  And, how do you feel about looking at homes listed by your agent’s company, knowing it’s highly likely he’ll be paid more than if you buy one of those rather than another company’s listing?

When it’s time to list, our advice is go with a big firm that puts a lot of marketing muscle behind its listings.  But, when it’s time to buy, use a firm that has no vested interest in which house you buy.  One that isn’t beholden to its seller clients and doesn’t pay their agents more for selling in-house listings.  Use an Exclusive Buyers Agency.  Call us at 910-202-4813.