Most Frequently Asked Questions - Buyer's Edition

Buying Tips

How does working with an agent benefit me?

Many of you have access to the internet, information is out there and you're wondering why should I work with an agent? I can find the apartment myself. Here is what a good agent provides.

#1) It saves you time.

#2) It makes you a more informed and prepared buyer.

#3) It makes you more competitive in a constant changing market.

#4) It helps you navigate through a complicated process of acquiring a home.

Should I have one agent from each real estate company?

If this is on your mind your likely nervous about missing a property but the truth is we cooperate with most of the other agencies, sponsors, and often directly with the owners. One call to your agent should get you all the information you need on any property you're interested in.

But what about other companies' exclusives?

An exclusive listing means that the seller of the property is represented exclusively by his or her selling agent. You are represented by your buyers agent and therefore can see anything available on the market. Since exclusive listings are co-brokeed you will not be missing out.

If I go directly to the seller's agent I can get a deal right?

A big misconception is that a buyer will get a discount if they go directly to a sellers agent. Most sellers agents have a clause in their contract where the seller pays the same commission in this scenario. In some cases, in a direct deal 1% is deducted from the commission to the sellers agent. However, if that 1% discount is applied to your sales price, it is much less than what a buyer's agent can negotiate for you between the sales price, concessions and terms. You also give up exclusive representation. In my opinion, there is a lot more to lose than to gain.

What about Sunday Open Houses?

A great way to see many properties in one day is by going to Sunday open houses. If you like looking at properties over the weekend and your agent is unable to go with you, ask them to register you for the open houses you wish to attend.


If I am going to do the work, why do I need an agent?

Your buyer's agent has a much more extensive and up to date data base than the public will find on the internet. We usually receive the listings before the public has access to the web. The market moves much faster than the internet and your agent will be able to tell you the status of the properties in which you are interested. It may be that those your agent 'MISSED" are actually ones that have been eliminated from consideration because they're already in contract. Information on the status on apartments is usually not updated in real time. As a buyers agent I also think about the history of the building. If its a building with a troubled finances I do not share those with my buyers.

Last but not least.... your agent should be there to advise you through every step of the way.

Including:

  • Finding the right mortgage agent to arrange the necessary financing.
  • Going over your financials so you are not wasting time looking in buildings that may not work. This is part of my buyers consultation.
  • Putting together a strong offer package to be competitive in the market.
  • Negotiate the price and terms of the sale.
  • Finding the right attorney to represent you.
  • Assemble the best possible board package to qualify you for acceptance.
  • Coach you for the board interview - if there is one.
  • Prepare you for the walkthrough and closing.

Are you thinking of buying? Please reach out to hello@stephaniebetancourt.com