Real Estate

Buying without agent

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[OP]
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Nov 1, 2001
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Buying without agent

Has anyone tried buying a home without agent? What are you experiences?
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Deal Guru
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Mar 23, 2008
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Why would you? The seller is paying the commissions, and their agreement with their agent probably gives the extra commission to the selling agent if that agent is doing the work for both buyer and seller. You may be able to negotiate some kind of deal, but probably not as much as you might wish.

C
[OP]
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CNeufeld wrote: Why would you? The seller is paying the commissions, and their agreement with their agent probably gives the extra commission to the selling agent if that agent is doing the work for both buyer and seller. You may be able to negotiate some kind of deal, but probably not as much as you might wish.

C
Mostly the hope of being able to negotiate the price down a bit.
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Feb 23, 2009
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Oshawa
ranjeet2000 wrote: Has anyone tried buying a home without agent? What are you experiences?
No problem. Saved money.
You need a lawyer anyway to protect your interests.
[OP]
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pkrash wrote: No problem. Saved money.
You need a lawyer anyway to protect your interests.
i will definitely use a lawyer.
Do you have a lawyer you recommend?
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Apr 6, 2009
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pkrash wrote: No problem. Saved money.
You need a lawyer anyway to protect your interests.
How do you know you saved money? If you have a skilled realtor (and someone you can trust) working for you, he can provide you with accurate relevant comparables to make sure you don't overpay. He can also help you negotiate and ask for the repair of deficiencies found during the inspection, saving you $$$. I know people who went solo and either did not get these repairs done either because they did not ask for it or asked for too much and/or for the wrong things.

And as someone said earlier, you not being represented by an agent, doesn't mean the seller will pay less in commissions and therefore you getting a lower price.
[OP]
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mrbizi wrote: How do you know you saved money? If you have a skilled realtor (and someone you can trust) working for you, he can provide you with accurate relevant comparables to make sure you don't overpay. He can also help you negotiate and ask for the repair of deficiencies found during the inspection, saving you $$$. I know people who went solo and either did not get these repairs done either because they did not ask for it or asked for too much and/or for the wrong things.

And as someone said earlier, you not being represented by an agent, doesn't mean the seller will pay less in commissions and therefore you getting a lower price.
you make a good point. When I bought my place my agent did nothing except show me the place collect the cheque. I found the place through realtor.ca on my own. Didn't even receive a welcome gift.
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Feb 23, 2009
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mrbizi wrote: How do you know you saved money? If you have a skilled realtor (and someone you can trust) working for you, he can provide you with accurate relevant comparables to make sure you don't overpay. He can also help you negotiate and ask for the repair of deficiencies found during the inspection, saving you $$$. I know people who went solo and either did not get these repairs done either because they did not ask for it or asked for too much and/or for the wrong things.

And as someone said earlier, you not being represented by an agent, doesn't mean the seller will pay less in commissions and therefore you getting a lower price.
I know because I knew how much the house was worth and the seller was going to list it for 5% more to cover the cost of the agents.
I negotiated a price quickly with the seller without needless middle-men (women).
Saved time and over $25K.
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Feb 23, 2009
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ranjeet2000 wrote: i will definitely use a lawyer.
Do you have a lawyer you recommend?
Sorry, no. The one I used years ago just retired.
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Dec 22, 2008
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No problem doing it on your own at all! (Assuming you can negotiate the price down).
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Dec 28, 2017
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Burlington
mrbizi wrote: How do you know you saved money? If you have a skilled realtor (and someone you can trust) working for you, he can provide you with accurate relevant comparables to make sure you don't overpay. He can also help you negotiate and ask for the repair of deficiencies found during the inspection, saving you $$$. I know people who went solo and either did not get these repairs done either because they did not ask for it or asked for too much and/or for the wrong things.

And as someone said earlier, you not being represented by an agent, doesn't mean the seller will pay less in commissions and therefore you getting a lower price.
if you can find a good agent that is truly knowledgeable and serve your best interest (less than 5% agents out there).. then yes, they are better.
With comparable sale prices easily accessible via websites. you can negotiate buy the house just as good as an agent.

In my opinion.. real estate agents itself is a conflict of interest.. the higher the sale price .. the higher the sales commission for both agents

An agent know their negotiating skill via experience.. with a slow housing market now, you can practice your negotiating skill the same way.

Also, an agent will not be as detailed as you would like. i.e.
- future development in the area
- zoning inquiry on barren land
- school rankings
- demographics (detail)
- transportation (route to go to work, public transit, congestion info, etc)
- quality of home , things that needs to repair

just these little things.. majority of the agents out there would not bother to check for you nor will they even do a better job than you.

As for contract... a few clause you may wish to cross off.. .. remember.. all changes on a contract needs to be initialed or sign.

Lastly.. All contracts needs to be READ by whomever that signs it it's not alot of pages.



For a 1MM house.. if you buy without an agent. at least the seller save 2-2.5%.. that's 20k there.. let's say you get it for 15k cheaper... it's still something you get from doing your homework that is ultimately allowing you to make a proper decision.


think about it this way, when you buy a car... did you just go and TRUST the sales person and buy the car without reading nor understanding anything? Many people read on the car website about features and all..


Lastly... an agent is only good because they took courses and have experience in Buying/selling house. Their knowledge in real estate is only better than you because many buyers didn't bother reading news, following trend, and doing their homework.

Finally, a house is the biggest investment in anyone's life.. most people take 30 years to pay off the house... the mortgage payment is usually the biggest re-occuring cashflow item in your account. finding an agent or not.. it's up to you.. but ultimately, you should do all your research by yourself because an agent wouldn't do it for you nor will they do a decent job.

Good Luck
Member
Apr 6, 2009
329 posts
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ayufan wrote: if you can find a good agent that is truly knowledgeable and serve your best interest (less than 5% agents out there).. then yes, they are better.

I AGREE. BUT NOT TOO DIFFERENT FROM SAY LOOKING FOR A CONTRACTOR TO FINISH YOUR BASEMENT. SOME ARE TOTAL SLEAZEBAGS AND A FEW WILL DO A GREAT JOB FOR YOU AND EVEN SAVE YOU MONEY.

With comparable sale prices easily accessible via websites. you can negotiate buy the house just as good as an agent.

NOT SURE ABOUT THIS. IT'S NOT JUST ABOUT ACCESS TO DATA, IT'S ABOUT THE ABILITY TO INTERPRET THE DATA. A SKILLED REALTOR CAN HELP YOU WITH THIS.

In my opinion.. real estate agents itself is a conflict of interest.. the higher the sale price .. the higher the sales commission for both agents

AGAIN, A GOOD AGENT WILL ALWAYS BE MINDFUL OF HIS FIDUCIARY OBLIGATIONS TO HIS CLIENT. ALTHOUGH IT IS TRUE THAT THE HIGHER THE PRICE, THE MORE COMMISSION AN AGENT MAKES - THE GOAL OF A GOOD AGENT IS TO GET A FAIR DEAL FOR HIS CLIENT WHILE PROTECTING THE CLIENT's INTERESTS.

An agent know their negotiating skill via experience.. with a slow housing market now, you can practice your negotiating skill the same way.

Also, an agent will not be as detailed as you would like. i.e.
- future development in the area
- zoning inquiry on barren land
- school rankings
- demographics (detail)
- transportation (route to go to work, public transit, congestion info, etc)
- quality of home , things that needs to repair

SOME OF THESE MIGHT BE TRUE. SO ASIDE FROM FINDING A SKILLED AND TRUSTWORTHY AGENT, THERE ARE OBVIOUS BENEFITS TO HIRING AN AGENT WHO KNOWS THE LOCAL MARKET WELL.

just these little things.. majority of the agents out there would not bother to check for you nor will they even do a better job than you.

As for contract... a few clause you may wish to cross off.. .. remember.. all changes on a contract needs to be initialed or sign.

Lastly.. All contracts needs to be READ by whomever that signs it it's not alot of pages.



For a 1MM house.. if you buy without an agent. at least the seller save 2-2.5%.. that's 20k there.. let's say you get it for 15k cheaper... it's still something you get from doing your homework that is ultimately allowing you to make a proper decision.

AGAIN, YOU ARE ASSUMING THAT BY GOING SOLO, YOU WILL GET A PRICE BREAK. IN MANY CASES, GOING SOLO MEANS THE LISTING AGENT JUST "DOUBLE-ENDS" THE DEAL, WITHOUT ANY BENEFIT TO YOU.

think about it this way, when you buy a car... did you just go and TRUST the sales person and buy the car without reading nor understanding anything? Many people read on the car website about features and all..


Lastly... an agent is only good because they took courses and have experience in Buying/selling house. Their knowledge in real estate is only better than you because many buyers didn't bother reading news, following trend, and doing their homework.

Finally, a house is the biggest investment in anyone's life.. most people take 30 years to pay off the house... the mortgage payment is usually the biggest re-occuring cashflow item in your account. finding an agent or not.. it's up to you.. but ultimately, you should do all your research by yourself because an agent wouldn't do it for you nor will they do a decent job.

I AGREE WITH ALL OF THIS. YOU HAVE TO DO YOUR OWN DUE DILIGENCE. AND A GOOD AGENT WILL ADD VALUE TO YOUR SEARCH AND PURCHASE.

Good Luck
Sr. Member
Jun 7, 2017
976 posts
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BC
CNeufeld wrote: Why would you?
No compelling reason to use one.

This feels like the argument for/against religious belief. Default state is none, and need a good reason to go for.
Member
Oct 27, 2013
287 posts
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MISSISSAUGA
If you are flexible to show your house, can negotiate, understand the value of your home, and are a people person, just do it yourself. If you have never seen a Purchase Afreement form before hire an agent if you don’t have time to research.
Member
Jul 4, 2013
215 posts
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Toronto, ON
CNeufeld wrote: Why would you? The seller is paying the commissions, and their agreement with their agent probably gives the extra commission to the selling agent if that agent is doing the work for both buyer and seller. You may be able to negotiate some kind of deal, but probably not as much as you might wish.

C
I try to do a lot of my own legwork and watch the listings like a hawk. Where I want an agent to help me is to figure out what a particular area is like, such as it's reputation, any possible development plans that we should be concerned about, or if it's a condo they might know something about the building or management company or potential difficulties (board battles, "party" building, etc). All the stuff that isn't written on a spec sheet.

Unfortunately, it's hard to find this type of agent. Many just read back the listing details, or can offer little insight beyond the obvious. I want an agent who specializes in the type of housing I want to buy and really knows the area. Too many agents are only interested in getting paid -- and quick; I want an agent who will help me find the right property, even if it takes months. The right person will get my business over and over again, and will be recommended to everyone else I know who is looking. It's amazing how many agents don't realize the power of this "ripple" effect.

Also, I'm not a big fan of BRA's. Most agents are now requiring that these agreements be signed, which I understand from their perspective. I know they put up a lot of time and expense up front and it sucks when a client ditches them or cuts them out. But at the same time, that's the job, and that's the risk.
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We were out shopping for our house about 2 years ago now. Our agent spent a lot of time putting together Saturday tours for us; multiple times, he coordinated viewings of 10+ houses on a single day. We did sign a BRA with him when we put together our first offer, but after that fell through, he stuck with us for probably 6 weeks of intense searching.

In the end, I got a notification (through the search our realtor configured for us in their system) before it hit the MLS website. I got the notification around 10am, we drove by it by noon, we did a viewing by 4, and had a verbally committed offer by 6. If we hadn't had an agent and were dependent on seeing it on the MLS site, I (and our agent) felt strongly that we would have gotten into a multiple offer situation the next day, as they already had several viewings booked, and it was well priced in a great neighborhood.

Just something to consider...

C
Sr. Member
Jun 7, 2017
976 posts
730 upvotes
BC
CNeufeld wrote: We were out shopping for our house about 2 years ago now. Our agent spent a lot of time putting together Saturday tours for us; multiple times, he coordinated viewings of 10+ houses on a single day. We did sign a BRA with him when we put together our first offer, but after that fell through, he stuck with us for probably 6 weeks of intense searching.

In the end, I got a notification (through the search our realtor configured for us in their system) before it hit the MLS website. I got the notification around 10am, we drove by it by noon, we did a viewing by 4, and had a verbally committed offer by 6. If we hadn't had an agent and were dependent on seeing it on the MLS site, I (and our agent) felt strongly that we would have gotten into a multiple offer situation the next day, as they already had several viewings booked, and it was well priced in a great neighborhood.

Just something to consider...

C
What are you asking us to consider? Here's a summary of your post:

Buyer did not want to put any effort into research or legwork, so [blah, blah].
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Furcorn wrote: What are you asking us to consider? Here's a summary of your post:

Buyer did not want to put any effort into research or legwork, so [blah, blah].
I'm not asking you to consider anything. I'm saying that in our case, our realtor lined up multiple days of full day viewings. That would have been difficult and time-consuming on my own, trying to co-ordinate with many listing agents to get access. I'm also saying that listings hit the market and are available to realtors before they're available to the general public (approximately 24 hours, IIRC). This means that if you rely on what listings you can find on your own, you may be reacting slower than you can with an agent. Even if you DO want to do your own research and effort (which we did).

C
[OP]
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CNeufeld wrote: We were out shopping for our house about 2 years ago now. Our agent spent a lot of time putting together Saturday tours for us; multiple times, he coordinated viewings of 10+ houses on a single day. We did sign a BRA with him when we put together our first offer, but after that fell through, he stuck with us for probably 6 weeks of intense searching.

In the end, I got a notification (through the search our realtor configured for us in their system) before it hit the MLS website. I got the notification around 10am, we drove by it by noon, we did a viewing by 4, and had a verbally committed offer by 6. If we hadn't had an agent and were dependent on seeing it on the MLS site, I (and our agent) felt strongly that we would have gotten into a multiple offer situation the next day, as they already had several viewings booked, and it was well priced in a great neighborhood.

Just something to consider...

C
That's true. but Not so sure these days there are multiple offerings. I see a lot of homes sitting around. If I can negotiate even part of the buying agent commission, it's a win for me. Let's say it's a 600000 home. That's $15k commission. I think the agent would spend probably 20-40 hrs on my request. probably less since I'm doing the legwork. At 20 hrs of work, he's making $700/hr. I can't justify that. especially when I'm the one searching the homes. The only thing I might want is neighborhood advice. But I have a few friends that live in the area and would be just as familiar.
Jr. Member
May 29, 2007
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Toronto
I think the realtor we used offers around 1.7% or more if you have almost selected the home or shortlisted 4-5 homes. He will show these homes again, offer his input, show comparables and past history. Though, We saw more than 60 homes in 6 months period so our cash back is lesser than someone in your situation gets...

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