Let me start by saying that I’m not a real estate agent and this is not real estate advice. It’s just my opinion formed over 19 years in this business and inspecting thousands of new homes in Tulsa and Houston.
Now that we have that out of the way, let’s get to the point of this article. And this is the point I want consumers to get. If you’re planning on buying a new home in Tulsa or anywhere for that matter, make sure you have a licensed real estate agent working for you!
I know what you’re probably thinking. “It’s a new home, can’t we just use the Builders sales agent?”
Here’s a sneaky little fact that a majority of consumers don’t know.
In some states, the Builders sales agents do not have to be licensed! They can literally tell you anything they want without worrying about the consequences. I’ve heard builders sales agents promise prospective home buyers all kinds of goodies and upgrades and never follow through. Once the consumers signed on the dotted line, the builder and their agents conveniently forgot all those promises. The home buyers didn’t know enough to get all those promises in writing either!
Advantages of Using a Real Estate Agent When Buying a New Home
The advantages of using a real estate agent when buying a new home are many.
A good real estate agent will be your advocate in all instances with the Builder. Just like a good independent inspector will be your advocate when it comes time for your inspections.
Plus, an experienced real estate agent will know how to negotiate with the Builder to get you the best possible deals.
One of the biggest myths that has ever been put out there among the home buying community is that Builders will give you a better deal if you don’t use an agent.
Now ask yourself, why would the Builder want to cut out your agent? Now you’re beginning to understand! 🙂
Let me reinstate here, that just signing up with any ole agent isn’t necessarily a good idea.
Here’s a few things I’d expect out of an agent I signed on with.
- I’d expect them to go with me to view the model homes and I’d certainly expect them at all meetings with the Builder and/or their Sales agents.
- I’d expect them to give me options on how to get the best deals on new homes from the Builder and inform me with the finance choices I may have.
- I’d expect them to insist that I have at least two inspections from an independent inspector with Code experience if I’m building from the ground up. The most important being the framing inspection, also known as a pre-drywall phase inspection. If I’m buying a newly constructed home that is nearly finished, I’d expect to have at least a Final Inspection. I do not buy the home under any circumstance until my independent Inspector has inspected it. Even if that means I walk away from the home. Yeah, it’s that important!
- Finally, I’d want my agent being my “middleman” on all communications with the Builder and/or their sales agents. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve seen Builders or their agents, do a runaround and cut out the agent at some point in the process and then end up playing the home buyers like a dollar store fiddle.
Don’t get me wrong. Not all Builders and their Sales agents are bad. Just like not all real estate agents and inspectors are bad. I’m saying if you don’t protect your own interest, don’t expect anyone else to do it for you! You need to be proactive and get the right professionals in your corner before even looking at new homes in Tulsa or elsewhere!
More Things To Keep In Mind When Buying A New Home in Tulsa
Over the years, I’ve seen some Builders and Developers actually begin to understand that real estate agents are a great source for bringing in home buyers (imagine that! 😉 ) Some go out of their way to court real estate agents. And that isn’t necessarily a bad thing!
But many more still look at independent agents and inspectors as the enemy. That’s sad because at the end of the day, everyone should be working for the best interest of the home buyer.
I’ve heard Builders and their Sales agents tell buyers that they would knock off a percentage of the home price if they didn’t use an agent. Why do you think their reasoning was behind this offer?
Some claim that an agent costs you money. That isn’t true at all. A good builder/developer understands economics. They know what their margins are and have rolled the cost of real estate commissions into the price of the home (along with other fees!)
Always beware of a builder/developer who tries to get you to not use a real estate agent! That should be your first red flag!
The better Builders and Developers will encourage prospective new home buyers to use a good real estate agent and hire their own independent home inspector. A Builder with nothing to hide does not fear either!
And remember this. Signing up with a real estate agent COSTS YOU NOTHING!
So hopefully I’ve helped you new home buyers in Tulsa and elsewhere understand the need to be proactive and protect yourself when buying new construction homes.