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    « Financial Planning and Real Estate - An Expert’s Advice | Main | Luxury housing sales edge higher as purchasers take advantage of buying opportunities in Ontario-Atlantic Canada, says RE/MAX »
    Monday
    Nov232009

    The Real Reason You Should Sign a Buyer Representation Agreement

    If you have spoken to a Realtor about buying a home, you should be familiar with the Buyer Representation Agreement. Like any contract, the Buyer Representation Agreement outlines commitments that your agent promises to make in exchange for commitments you promise to make. Under this Agreement, agents are committed to provide you with the following duties: LOYALTY, OBEDIENCE, DISCLOSURE, CONFIDENTIALITY, REASONABLE CARE AND DILIGENCE, and ACCOUNTING. In exchange, buyers commit to ensuring the agent is paid for services rendered (Note that in most cases, the payment is usually paid by the seller). Legally, realtors are obligated to discuss buyer agency with potential clients at the earliest opportunity.

    When I first learned about Buyer Representation Agreements I wasn’t convinced they were really in the best interest of buyers. You can argue that realtors like Buyer Representation Agreements as they bind buyers to them and ensure they get paid regardless of the service they provide. I agree to a certain extent but have quickly determined that as a professional realtor, establishing a Buyer/Agent relationship is the only way I will do business. Here’s why…

    As a realtor I meet a lot of people who are looking for information on the Oakville housing market. I receive several emails and phone calls and am happy to spend time discussing real estate issues with potential clients (really I am) but like everything else there is a limit to the amount of hours in my day. Despite what many people want to believe, real estate is much more than setting up appointments and opening up doors. I say this with the utmost honesty as someone who knows the pressures and stress of a corporate job. There is no way I would have chosen to switch careers if I thought the advice of a realtor could just as easily be learned through an MLS or Google search. No one understands the nuances of the local market, future development plans for an area, the art of negotiation, school issues and make-up of specific neighbourhoods like an intelligent, diligent local realtor.

    I spend hours upon hours working for my clients and several more keeping up to date with current real estate and housing information. My first priority is to my clients and in order to provide a level of service that I am proud of, I limit my interactions to clients first and prospective clients second. To be brutally honest, I just don’t have time to dedicate the kind of service buyers deserve (sometimes for months at a time) without any kind of commitment of loyalty from them. For me, the Buyer’s Representation Agreement solidifies my commitment of excellence and priority status to you in exchange for your commitment of loyalty to me.

    When explained this way, I find that most people have no issues signing the agreement, leading to a relationship built on trust and service. It is the best way I know how to do business. I question buyers who believe that they will somehow get better service or a better deal without using a committed Buyer’s agent. I simply do not understand how they think they will get first class service and advice without any kind of commitment (on either end). Like most things in life, you get out what you put in. If you believe realtors are transactional type people who simply book appointments and unlock doors then you can easily find one that will be willing to provide you with minimal service for minimal commitment. If you expect more out of your realtor, then take your time, find a realtor you trust, have them commit to you, and be willing to commit to them. If you do so, you will be impressed by the advice and expertise you gain from the experience.

    Questions or comments? Feel free to comment below, email me at lindsay@remaxaboutowne.com or call me at 905.338.9000.

    Regards,

    Lindsay

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