July 21, 2006, Newsletter Issue #90: Real Estate Services Provided

Tip of the Week

If you have never worked with a real estate agent before, you may be wondering what relocation services or real estate services the agent and the agency provide. It depends on whether you are buying or selling a property. If you are selling a property, the agent will provide you with a market analysis, help you set a fair price for your property, and show the property to potential buyers. Depending on the relationship the agent has with its agency, your property may be advertised at the expense of the agency, the agent, or a combination of the two. The agent will also present any offers received on your property and negotiate the best deal possible on your behalf. If you are buying a property, the services provided by an agent will depend on whether the agent is a buyer's broker (which is recommended) or the seller's agent. If you are working with the seller's agent, understand that while the agent will show you properties and do everything possible to sell you a home you are happy with, that agent's legal responsibility is to represent the best interests of the seller. If you prefer to have an agent working exclusively on your behalf, you can work with a buyer's broker. A buyer's broker is committed to the buyer's best interests. That includes showing you homes that best match your needs and finances as well as advising you during negotiations should you decide to place an offer on a property. Many real estate agents function as dual buyer/seller agents in a particular transaction. In this case, you may wish to consider hiring a real estate attorney to review any legal documents before you commit yourself to a deal.

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