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Old 11-21-2012, 05:41 AM
51 posts, read 93,149 times
Reputation: 18


I am looking at new construction and I have already looked at places I am interested in. The builder I was told has additional incentives. My question is, do I really need a realtor when buying new construction. Will I lose the incentives if I go with a realtor being that the builder will have to pay a commission.

Or will the realtor be an advantage to negotiate a better price on home, lot, or incentives?

Thank you!
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:30 AM
Location: Port Charlotte, FL
3,979 posts, read 9,977,614 times
Reputation: 1925
You don't need a Realtor for new construction if you are just building on your own lot. However, it is sometimes helpful to have a Realtor take you to the different developments. It is a personal preference of which way you feel most comfortable. If you are a good negotiator you can negotiate the price with the builder. The builder will offer you the incentives with or without a Realtor. I have sold new construction to buyers as a Realtor and the builder still gave the discounts plus the commission. I think it really depends on which builder you are using. The Sales Rep for the builder will write the contract for you.
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Old 11-21-2012, 07:14 AM
Location: Lakewood Ranch, FL
5,653 posts, read 10,102,484 times
Reputation: 6904
I don't know if there are times when builder-reps deliberately withhold incentives but I have taken buyers to models where we started getting into the weeds on price and nothing was said until I brought it up because I was aware of their program from a previous visit. Although it may seem that our role is more tour guide than agent, as TamRE says, our value becomes more apparent once we get into the details and decisions are being made. Sometimes I offer opinions, sometimes perspective, sometimes market information, etc. that buyers seem to appreciate and use. Even things like selecting a particular lot, I can offer insight that buyers would probably not have and that can be helpful. Some buyers are more sophisticated than others so some may not want or need the assistance. Only you can decide that but I've never heard of a builder offering incentives that were only available if you don't have an agent.
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Old 11-21-2012, 01:26 PM
Location: Sarasota/ Bradenton - University Pkwy area
4,286 posts, read 6,586,788 times
Reputation: 5294
I agree with bbronston and would add to that. Sometimes a buyer's agent can negotiate things with the builder that they might not otherwise offer to do. For instance, I had a buyer this summer that liked a new construction home but wanted a screened lanai and the home in question was not screened. I negotiated with the builder rep and they eventually agreed to screen in the lanai at no additional charge and still keep the original incentives offered up front.

Also, since my buyer was not in town for the time period between contract and closing, I did a preliminary walk thru for the buyer with the builder's rep, taking photos and notes of everything, helped the buyer find a reputable home inspector to do an inspection for the buyer before closing to make sure there were no hidden defects (yes, I do recommend buyers get their own independent home inspection done before closing on new construction), and followed up after the fact with the builder's rep on the repair items. So by the time the buyer actually arrived back in town for the closing, all that was required was a final walk thru with the builder's rep and then the actual closing.

There is also a wide range of capabilities of the on site builder reps. Some have been with the builders for a long time and know their products well, others are newer and are not well informed. As a buyer, you also have to know the right questions to ask about the construction, community rules and regulations, how the HOA will be set up, financials, etc as the on site reps don't normally volunteer the nuts and bolts info without prompting. Remember, the builder's rep is exactly that. They are working for the builder, not the buyer.

As to incentives, I have found that as a general rule the builders will pay a commission to a buyer's agent but they don't automatically give buyers without agents a discount for not having an agent. In other words, the savings generally stays in the builder's pocket.

There is no one right or wrong answer to your question, it's a matter of personal preference and what you as a buyer feel comfortable with.
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:44 PM
1,229 posts, read 1,104,615 times
Reputation: 667
Be careful, I had one Agent I was buying a lot through give me a "recommended" builder and found out that she was getting a 10 percent kick back on the home. I dumped her fast and she got ten percent of nothing. Not even the lot. She was always trying to save my soul because of the atheist sticker on my car, I think she was more concerned with take me to the cleaners then my ever lasting soul. LOL If someone recommends a good service contractor to you make sure its because they like them not because they are getting a kick back. This was in Hot Springs Arkansas. Not sure if its legal or not, I don't know of any reason that it should be but not to be upfront about it is to me unethical. If you say, I like this contractor I work with them and get a commission for recommending them than what ever. But hiding it is not right.
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:10 PM
Location: Sarasota FL
6,864 posts, read 11,365,205 times
Reputation: 6717
I can't imagine any reason or purpose to use the service of a realtor when building a home, especially if you own a lot. They do nothing except have their hand out to collect a commission.
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