So you're looking for a new house or a lot for sale on which you can build your dream house. You know you need to enlist the aid of a real estate agent. Here are some tips that will help you find the right one.
The first thing to remember and, ironically, the most important thing for a lot of people, is that your real estate agent will not be working for you. That's a common misconception. No matter who the real estate agent is and how close your personal ties may be, the agent's primary objective is to sell a piece of property to you. In fact, his income depends on that sale. The larger you pay for the property you want, the bigger his commission. Bear that in mind: it is in the real estate agent's interest to make you spend more.
Sometimes we become really comfortable and open with sales people that we share confidential matters that can have huge bearing on a potential sale. For instance, you may tell them that you are desperate for a piece of property because you have to move out of your old house within a week. This lets your sales agent know that they can sell the property to you at a high price. As a general rule, don't let anyone know how much you are willing to pay for a new house or lot.
Oftentimes, the first question that a real estate agent throws at you is precisely that: how much are you willing to pay? It's an old ploy so don't fall for it. In response, simply state the price that you want to pay and, if they ask again, tell them that's the ceiling. Add that if the seller does not agree to that price, then there is nothing to talk about and move on. Chances are great that a serious seller (or buyer, for that matter) will immediately turn down a prospect upon hearing the first bid. In all likelihood, a serious buyer or seller will negotiate and explore options.
Finally, don't let your real estate agent choose the lawyer who will write up the property agreement, precisely because the agent is trying to sell you something. It would be far better if you selected your attorney yourself.