While perfection is expected when building a new home, it is important to remember that humans are doing the work and humans aren’t perfect.
Helping you negotiate and buy your new construction home build, including a new custom home build.
Lets first debunk the myth often presented by home builders – THE BIGGEST MISCONCEPTIONS OF THEM ALL. Representing you as real estate professional and as your negotiator won’t cost you more money. In fact, it’s quite the contrary you’ll save some big money!! That’s why home builders want you to believe the former – that’s why they prefer not to have me negotiate for you.
YOU SHOULD BE very leery of any site agent who frowns or discourages you from having me as your agent or attempts to minimize the need for my services. Don’t be fooled by false representations. Some site agents will go so far as to suggest that buyers can save them money by not having me as your agent – and that those “savings” will will be passed on to you. SURE!! No “savings’ are ever passed on. Nothing further from the truth. They’ll take you for a novice. By doing so, the site agent may be subtly suggesting that by not having me as your agent will mean more commission for themselves. The higher the price they sell you, the more money for the sales agent AND for the builder.
What I can do for you:
- The site agent works for the builder, and represent the builder and their best interests – NOT YOU and NOT YOUR BEST INTERESTS.
- The site agent’s primary responsibility is to sell you a brand new construction home at the highest possible price for the highest builder profit. There are not there to do you a favor because they like you. It’s a business.
- Their interest tends to be largely focused on builder inventory homes at various stages of construction vs. build-from-scratch options, as inventory homes are the ones a builder is expending money on upfront. And on the ones that are less likely to sell as fast.
- No matter what stage you are as a buyer of a new home you may find yourselves in, working with me makes me an advocate for what YOU want—not simply getting a home off the builder’s books in time for the end of the quarter.
- I understands the new home sales process, the lingo, the parties involved like title companies, lenders, officials, permits, how to best to negotiate, what can and should be asked for, as well as things that may not fly. I can pull up comparable sales of new construction homes to give you an idea of what other properties have been selling for. You may be surprised to learn that a site agent may not have access to the MLS. Builders typically have listing information handled by someone in their corporate office, so site agents are not able to research the data the way I can to give you an idea of market statistics that could impact your decision.
- Not all builder sales agents are sharks in the water. Many work hard to cultivate, maintain and nurture relationships with residential real estate agents like me as they know agent-brought customers are a critical component of their business. My clients tend to be more serious and ready, willing and able to do something versus people wandering in off the street.
- I am well-versed in new construction tend to have established relationships with site agents as well, and can leverage these relationships to your advantage. I am often given access to properties and lots that have not yet been released to the public and could be made aware of special incentives or offerings that no one else knows about.
- No waiting at the sales office. I always schedule an appointment with the builder’s site agent who will set aside a significant amount of time to meet one-on-one to discuss your needs. Builders are often unable to accommodate drop-in visitors because the site agents are currently occupied with customers and out showing available inventory and lots. Often, I’m the one to show you what’s available and negotiable.
- Help you negotiate your purchase price. The price quote and your contract price will be much different than what you think.
- Help you determine what the property will really costs you.
- Help you determine the facts between real premiums and upgrades. Lot upgrades are mostly artificial. It’s pure profit for the builder, and has a lot to do about their sunk costs into a existing build.
- Builder discounts and incentives are often smoke and mirror incentives to actually increase their profit and yields on the sale and not necessarily savings to you – that’s right, discounts and incentives are not what you think they are. The builders are doing this to make more money.
- Help you negotiate your discounts and incentives.
- Help you negotiate what’s negotiable and what is not.
- Negotiate the financing. Builders typically offer incentives to a buyer for using their “preferred” lender(s). The real scoop behind this is that it is a joint contribution typically shared in some way between the builder and their lender partner – at your cost. The builder is all about profit of course, so capturing the financing piece of the home is an additional source of revenue for them. Keep in mind that interest rates and some fees could be a bit more when using a builder’s lender due to the closing cost concession being paid for. In other words, “there is no such thing as a free lunch.”
- Help you with sales center guidance. That’s where builders make good money. What you need to chose for finishes and what to pass on. Lets face it. What you saw in the model home IS NOT what you will be getting in your new home. What they propose as an incentive upgrade with big savings may not be. How they combine the upgrades and incentive for you to buy is … confusing and not necessarily in your best interest. It may just be old surplus or leftover inventory they need to pass on because new or better materials are coming in.
- How to choose wisely for your enjoyment and future value of your new home – what’s in, what’s not, what’s already dated. Incentives, custom work, incentives, and upgrades might just be a huge lot cheaper from a private contractor than from the builder.
- Help you manage change orders.
- Help you manage expectations
- Help you keep track the construction progress and the steps involved.
And finally, it is important for you to involve me right from the beginning – especially the first visit to a new construction community and always mention me – that you are working with me to any site agent that they may be having communications with. Many builder policies require that the buyer’s agent (me) accompany the customer on their first visit and that they be properly registered to that agent. If you as a buyer does not discuss having me as your agent and then try to involve me when you are close to making a decision, some builders may not allow me to be involved, so best to err on the side of caution and bring me along right from the beginning. You see how builders negotiate?