New construction is absolutely booming in the Triangle area.
With new homes sales going at a brisk pace, some buyers are worried they will lose their favorite lot or miss out on the one house under construction that meets all of their needs. However, it is in the buyer’s best interest to not rush into a new construction purchase without the assistance of a real estate agent.
Here are 5 reasons why having a buyer’s agent is a must when purchasing new construction:
- The builder’s representative is often not a licensed real estate agent but an employee of the builder. Their legal obligations to you as a buyer are different than what the NC Real Estate Commission requires of licensed brokers.The problem is that the builder’s representative may ask a lot of questions in an effort to expose the buyer’s motivation for buying. Buyers are often lulled into answering, feeling like the builder’s representative is nice and professional. However, that type of information would not be accessible to the seller in a situation where the buyer is buying a used home – making the seller (in this case, the builder) privy to your personal situation leaves you at a disadvantage during negotiations. Involving a buyer’s agent during the entire new construction process will ensure that you don’t inadvertently give the builder a leg-up on you.
- Communication tends to be the biggest complaint that buyers have with new construction.
Buyers tend to have an understanding of the scope of the project based on what the sales representative says, but then buyers move on to deal with the project manager who actually builds the home. Sometimes the builder will then tell the buyer something different and if there is nothing in writing to prove it was included in the contract, it is difficult to enforce. Items like drainage, grading, and the number of steps to the home’s entry have the tendency to become points of contention during the construction process. Working with a buyer’s agent during the contract process will ensure that important items are negotiated ahead of time and agreements between the buyer and builder are put in writing.
- Buyers can benefit from having an agent’s guidance in understanding what their final price will be after they make all of their selections. The process in our area starts with the buyer signing the contract and then the buyers go to the design center to select upgrades and finishes such as flooring, cabinets, appliances, etc. Having a buyer’s agent who attends those meetings helps ensure that the information provided by any of those builder employees is documented. Buyers also need help understanding what selections and upgrades will help resale and which ones just help the builder’s profit margin.
- Zoning and adjacent land in a community is a very important consideration. Builder’s representatives practice how to present less desirable aspects of a lot or community to buyers to minimize questions and objections. A good buyer’s agent is going to explain to you how those aspects affect the resale value and how the community might change.An example is land not owned by the builder that is currently undeveloped. It could be in the process of being developed or could be developed in the future. The type of housing, commercial buildings, or the proximity of future roads that might be built is very important information that a buyer should consider before purchasing a new home.
- Contracts on used homes usually use a contract drafted by the state bar that is designed to be equally weighted between the buyer and seller. Builders, however, usually use their own contracts that are drafted by their attorneys and are clearly written to benefit the builder over the buyer. A buyer’s agent can help to decode the more dense language in the contract and ensure that buyers have full understanding of what they’re signing.
Even if you visit a new home community before you realize you need a buyer’s agent, it is a good idea to get a buyer’s agent involved before you make an offer.
The process of buying a new construction home is not as simple as you might have thought. If you’re interested in buying or building new construction and want the peace of mind of a professional advocating on your behalf, give me a call. I’d love to work with you to ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible! Call Amy for your Shair of the [new construction] market: 919-469-6539.