Thinking of Buying Privately?
Beware of the risks!
First of all, why would a Buyer want to side-step a trained Real Estate Salesperson who’s willing to invest between 20 to 40 hours of time, (or more) sometimes endlessly driving around, doing market research, arranging mortgages, liaising with lawyers, home inspectors, etc. at zero cost to the Buyer finding a home?
If, when buying private, you believe the Seller, who doesn’t know you, wants to save you money by selling private, you’ve got it wrong! A Seller selling privately wants to save himself money – not you, and sometimes he robs himself in the process.
However, the big question is, when you buy private, who’s representing your interests?
You may want to say it’s your lawyer. Sure, he’ll do a great job as far as the legal work is concerned, and you’re going to pay handsomely for it.
But what about the home you’re buying?
You may like its physical appearance. But there are other things, which must be sound before you make the purchase.
Without the expertise of a Realtor, how would you know the house is structurally sound? The type of furnace, electricity voltage, windows, and other features of a home will determine its price. How will you determine you’re getting a good home for your hard earned money? How would you ensure that the same appliances remain in the home when you’re closing? What must you do to ensure the house is not a health hazard? What must be done to make sure the house is in the same condition when you move in, as it was when you inspected it two or three months ago? How are you going to protect yourself against someone laying a claim to it five years down the road?
These, and many other situations, a good realtor will insulate you against. Realtors do not only negotiate in the purchase of a home. They also negotiate for excellent mortgage rates. Sometimes they get better rates than your bank will give you.
They look after your interests – right up to the end. If problems crop up at the time of closing, they are there as buffers, and would leave no stone unturned to set things aright. They will also advise on useful alternatives – all at no cost to Buyers, unlike a lawyer who charges by the hour and every time you’re on the phone with him.
There are many people out there who mistakenly believe that buying a house private means saving money. This is certainly not so, no matter how much the Seller tells you that you’ll be saving money together with him. The rationale is simple – why will someone who doesn’t know you, want to save you money?
Home purchasing can be a very complex transaction, which requires skill, knowledge and special Real Estate training which only a good Realtor possesses. It is not as simple as buying a car or furniture.
Again, the same advice – don’t play around with the biggest investment in your life, lest it becomes the biggest nightmare in your life!