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Buyer's agent strategy

Started by debitek, May 08, 2019, 06:40:08 PM

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I am looking to buy my first home in a competitive market (Bay Area - East Bay). I've never purchased a home before, and live in a comfortable rental so I do not need to make a hasty decision. I may take a year or longer to find the right house at the right price. In this situation, I'm trying to understand how to evaluate potential buyer's agents. How have you all approached this issue?

-Do you just interview agents and pick the one you like the best?
-Do you work with multiple buyers agents (transparently) to see who has access to private listings?
-Do you forego a buyer's agent and go instead with a real estate attorney to try to improve your offer competitiveness to the seller / seller's agent?
-Any other creative ideas?

I'm curious to hear the approach that others have taken and what your recommendations are. Thanks!


Here are my thoughts:



Thank you Sam. I appreciate your reply. The article you linked to provides a great framework for what to look for in an agent. Having said that, the article focuses on your experiences working with a listing agent. I am especially curious about your (and others') approaches to working with buyer's agents. For example, the article mentions that you have been to over 100 open houses without buying from them. Clearly you are a discerning investor, and I respect that! How do buyer's agents feel about your approach? Do you find agents that are patient and willing to learn the house attributes you are looking for in order to assist you in your search over a long time period? Or do you work without an agent during this period?



In today's world a buyer's agent is still necessary, just to be able to look at homes when you want instead of at open houses, and if it's a hot market in your area you need someone who can be ready to write up a deal lucky-split. I think Sam's advice is still pertinent, although if it's someone who's too hot you might have scheduling conflicts to deal with. As for learning about your preferences, just make sure they seem able to listen when talking with them. Ask them to send you listings that look even remotely close because your idea of walking distance to a park might be different than theirs.