Buyer Beware: Don’t Call the Agent on the Yard Sign!

As you are driving down the road, you see the cutest little house in your dream neighborhood. You are delighted to see a “For Sale” sign out front, emblazoned with a real estate agent’s name and a number encouraging you to “Schedule your viewing today!”

What do you do?

Take a Deep Breath

What you DON’T do is call the number on the sign. That person is legally and ethically obligated to protect the interests of the current owners of the house. You need someone to look out for your interests. You need a buyer’s agent.

If you’re already working with a buyer’s agent, contact that individual right away and tell them about the house. They’ll arrange a showing, on your behalf.

If you don’t have a buyer’s agent, you need to get one. To ensure they have special training and experience in representing buyers, find an agent who’s earned the Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation. You can identify one (or more) in your area with the Find a Buyer’s Rep directory.

Why Do I Need a Buyer’s Agent If I’ve Found THE PERFECT House?

Even if you can feel it in your bones, that this is YOUR house, you still need a buyer’s agent. Buying any house is a big decision that shouldn’t be entered into lightly, especially a house that makes your stomach do flip-flops. If your mind is screaming, “I wants it… I wants the precious!” you may be particularly vulnerable to making bad decisions.

Your buyer’s agent can help you identify any problems with the property (after all, love is blind). They’ll help you negotiate for the best price (as long as you don’t reveal your passions to the current owner). Your buyer’s rep can also help ensure you get the inspections and protections you need when making an investment of this magnitude.

Keep Your Emotions at Bay

Buying a house is not the best time for an emotionally-charged financial expenditure. Your buyer’s agent can help. They can also help guide you through other key steps in the process, such as applying for a mortgage.

Buyer’s reps who’ve earned their ABR® designation specialize in helping buyers get the home they want and need, without the pitfalls.

Besides, if you call the agent on the yard sign, they’ll be able to smell your emotional attachment over the phone, prompting you to forfeit any leverage in the deal before you even offer them your anxious, sweaty palm in that first “nice to meet you” handshake.