For Buyers

Tools and tips for home buyers.

How to buy a house.  One of our most popular features.

Consumer Friendly Buyer Representation Clauses. Consider adding some of these clauses to the Buyer Representation contract that your Realtor provides to you.

How to Negotiate Buyer Broker Fees. Some of our readers have saved thousands of dollars by following this advice.

LIST of Buyer Agents Whose Fees Are Fair.  List of buyer agents who are willing to discount their fee.  We have yet to come across an agent who will not pay a 25% referral fee to another broker.  In other words, all agents should be willing to discount by this amount.

LIST of Exclusive Buyer Agents.   If you can find one of them in your area, you should strongly consider hiring them.  And in order to avoid conflicsts of interest, they focus only on buyers and their firms will not accept seller listings. 

LIST of Independent Title Agents.  Title insurance agents which are not affiliated with other real estate service providers have to compete for your business and are likely to cost less and provide more safeguards.

LIST of Top Ten Worst Practices.  Be aware of these bad practices.

Save $300.   One simple tactic will save you $300.

Open House Form for Buyers.  Without a FORM like this buyers risk forfeiting half the commission to the listing broker and losing their right to hiring their own agent.

Pledge of Allegiance for Buyers.  A starting point.

Reissue Credits on Title Insurance.  Ask your Realtor or title company to obtain the seller’s prior owners title insurance policy and you may receive a substantial discount on title insurance.


Articles

Survey – Real estate attorneys – See what attorneys think about dual agency and controlled business arrangements (“one stop shopping”)

Avoid Dual Agency.  Consumers top two reasons for hiring Realtors is to help negotiate price and terms.  Realtors are prohibited from doing both in a dual agency.

Dual Agency Schemes. Brokers receive a double commission in dual agency transactions and they have developed numerous schemes to artificially increase the frequency of dual agency.

Designated Agency. Is it Fraud?

Don’t Get a Home Warranty.   The limitations on coverage and fees make these warranties a waste of money for consumers.  Realtors or their firm often are incentivized to sell these to you.

Negotiating With Buyer Agents.   They are NOT FREE.   If an agent tells you not to worry about their fee because it is free and the seller is paying it, that is your signal to find another agent.   Here we explain some common negotiating techniques.

Avoid Open Houses.  Read this article before you decide to view open houses.  Open houses are for helping Realtors find buyer clients, they do not sell houses.  We also have a form to help buyers who still wish to visit open houses (see number 4 above).

“One Stop Shopping”  Do not ever use services that are affiliated with your Realtor, brokerage or builder firm.  The service industries designed to provide safeguards to ensure healthy residential real estate transactions are now actually owned and run by the firms which have huge stakes in the transaction such as builders, Realtors, and lenders.

How To Search for a Home Online.  Tips and traps of using online search services to find a home.