The advantages of working with a 'buyer specialist' when buying property 

Many buyers choose to go alone when looking to buy a house, unaware of the advantages they receive by working with a real estate salesperson.  These buyers could miss-out on properties, or purchase a property that they are unhappy with.  Below I have explained some of the advantages of working with a buyer specialist when purchasing property.

Real estate salespeople are educated and experienced in successfully negotiating a purchase.

More importantly, it’s their full-time occupation, allowing you to live your life while they handle all of the tedious particulars.  A buyer specialist makes the home-buying process less stressful, and you can trust that they are working solely for you, the buyer. You can especially trust a Harcourts salesperson to find the property best for you, as Harcourts were voted New Zealand's most trust real estate brand 3 years running.

A buyer specialist is not interested in pushing a particular house to you; instead they’re inclined to show you properties that fit your criteria. 

Does working with a buyer specialist cost you any fees?
 
No it doesn’t.
 
The services of a buyer specialist are free to the buyer. 
 
A buyer specialist whose buyer is successful in purchasing a house 
is entitled to a split of the already stipulated commission that the 
vendor pays upon sale of their house.  Only the vendor pays the
commission, and their real estate salesperson who listed the house
receives less of the commission when the buyer has their own real estate salesperson.
 
 Some of the roles of a buyer specialist (which I will cover more in depth shortly) include: 
  • Acting ethically and within the law - Real Estate Agents Act 2008,  REAA (Professional Conduct and Client Care) Rules 2012
  • Showing buyers properties that fits their criteria and budget
  • Providing expertise in purchasing real estate
  • Negotiating the price for the buyer
  • Connect you with the service providers such as building inspectors and lendors, to best suit your needs.
 
Ethical Practise
All licenced real estate salespeople in New Zealand are governed by the Real Estate Agents Act 2008 and REAA (Professional Conduct and Client Care) Rules 2012. This means real estate salesperson must abide by a code of ethics, which sets the regulations for their behaviour, helping makes sure real estate salesperson act honestly and ethically.  Real estate salesperson are obligated to put the clients' interests first, and they are required to make full disclosure about any problems with a property.
Harcourts Most Trusted Real Estate company
Harcourts Rototuna Office
At Harcourts, we pride ourselves on our ethical conduct.
 
This is part of the reason Harcourts is voted New Zealand's most TRUSTED real estate brand.
 
94% of New Zealanders say trust equals peace of mind. This is particularly true in real estate. Making the decision to buy or sell your home is one of the biggest financial decisions you will ever make. Understandably people want to deal with sales consultants that have knowledge, expertise, honesty and integrity and are committed to achieving the best possible result for them. That is why at harcourts
we put absolute focus on creating a relationship of trust and respect with every single person who uses our services.
Finding available homes
 
A buyer specialist will give you great advice and find you the property best for you, giving you the most up-to-date property listings, and keep you updated to-the-minute on the status of potential properties.  
 
Property features
Real estate salespeople possess valuable market knowledge, and are far more likely to find the perfect match for you than a real estate website.  Real estate salespeople know neighbourhoods and houses inside and out; including having the ability to identify new or upcoming ‘hotspots’.  A knowledgeable experienced real estate salesperson will know the house that's for sale that has a particular feature that a buyer might want. This particular feature may not even be in photos or recognised as a desirable feature by the listing real estate salesperson, so these may not show online. 

Set up numerous private viewings in the one day
Once your real estate salesperson has taken down some notes about what sort of property you are after - e.g. type of home, area, size, how many rooms, suburb etc. - they can start building a list of potential houses to visit.  That real estate salesperson can set up private viewing, so you can see all the properties in one morning or afternoon, without having to share an open home viewing with other potential buyers.
 
Harcourts conjunct with all the major brands across Hamilton
In many markets, real estate brands do not conjunct.  This means that if you're working with a real estate salesperson, then they cannot show you listings from another brand.  However, this isn't the case in Hamilton.  Harcourts conjunct with all the major brands - which means you have access to all the listings in Hamilton if you're working with a real estate salesperson, not just Harcourts properties. Harcourts are the only brand in Hamilton that does this.  So working with a real estate salesperson from another brand in Hamilton will mean that you do not have access to view all the listings with that salesperson, as not all of the companies work together and share commissions.

Learn about properties as soon as they're listed and have early access
If you have a real estate salesperson looking for properties on your behalf, chances are you'll have first access to potential options as they come onto the market.  A good buyer specialist will take a list of characteristics you are after in a property; and after caravan run (where real estate salespeople jump into cars together and check out the new listings), they will contact you if anything has come up.  Often properties might not be on the market officially (online, signboards etc.) until a week or two after caravan run, as the house or section might need a tidy up before going onto the market.  However, buyers working with a real estate salesperson have access to properties as soon as they're caravanned, which may be a week or two before the first open home.

Houses for sale that aren't advertised publically

Most properties put up for sale have marketing campaigns which include signboards and advertising online.  In some cases however, vendors don't want the fact they're selling to be publicised for personal reasons.  For example, they might not want their neighbours or friends to know that their house is for sale.  In these cases, only real estate salespeople know these properties are up for sale. Working with a real estate salesperson gives you access to homes you might otherwise miss seeing.
Expertise, Knowledge and Advice

Your real estate salesperson will be skilled and
experienced in all aspects of bidding,
negotiation, contracts, financing, 
and the settlement process. 

Unbiased opinion of properties
Your real estate salesperson will advise you about any negative factors as well as the positive points of each property, when showing you homes.

A buyer specialist will be able to identify potential trouble with a property that you may not see, and point out what is a major and what is minor.  The salesperson can also recommend services such building inspectors who will provide a detailed report on problems with the house. If the house is in reasonably good condition, requests for repairs can make or break a deal. 

Paperwork
Paperwork can be tiresome.  Offers, counter offers, and then more counter offers. The odds of missing something, not initialling a margin or not checking a box, can drop substantially when you're working with someone who knows the paperwork inside and out.  Real estate salesperson have expertise in the technical aspects of a sale, and can do the bulk of the paperwork, which limits mistakes that may be made. 
  
A lot can also happen between the signing the purchase offer and settlement when you move in to the property.   Your real estate salesperson will deal with these final details and anything that may come up, and keep you in touch about the transaction.
  

Pricing
Good and experienced real estate salesperson can give you a realistic price estimation based on their knowledge and experience of relative sales in a neighbourhood, how well a neighbourhood holds its value.  A real estate agent can also provide invaluable insight on the potential for return on investment.
 
Many buyers select a home based upon emotion.  Investors not so much, but first-home buyers will often get emotionally attached to a home, and only see the good characteristics.  Real estate salesperson don’t become emotionally involved with a home, they look past the "staging" and keep you focused on your goals.  It won’t be a case of ‘love at first sight’ with a real estate salesperson; they will do their research thoroughly and objectively and present you with all the facts.  A buyer specialist will be your best resource for information such as how long a home has been on the market, whether it has been listed more than once, and how it compares to neighbouring properties.

Real estate salespeople have the experience from their ongoing immersion in the market to know which homes have true value, which are over-priced, and which will have hidden costs in the long run.  The salesperson can tell you frankly whether a specific house you're interested in is over-priced or under-priced.  They know what the market is doing, and what properties are selling for in that area.  Often, a real estate salesperson will have such good knowledge of property that they will not waste your time viewing houses that they know won't work out. 

When you find your perfect home to purchase, the salesperson provides you with their estimation of a potential price based on comparable sales data, to help you decide on your offer price.
 

Strategy and Negotiation
A buyer’s interests are protected by the buyer specialist during the process of purchasing real estate.

A buyer specialst is an objective party in the process, and they won’t let their decisions become clouded by emotion; they do what they can to get the deal across the line.  Real estate salespeople are experienced with the high tension and nerves that the buyer may be having during the crucial negotiating and closing process; and they're aware of the pitfalls that can kill deals in the final days or hours, and are used to dealing with these types of issues. 

Real estate salespeople are comfortable with the negotiation process, and having a real estate salesperson to negotiate the deal saves the buyer getting overly emotional about the deal.  It’s the salesperson’s job to work through challenges that arises, and to try and ensure these don’t happen, such as making sure that the professionals involved (e.g. solicitors or valuers) are keeping to the timeline.  They can also negotiate conditions of the sale or chattels.  For example, the vendor may not budge on taking the drapes, and you want to adjust your offer. Your real estate salesperson can handle that part calmly and take the heat in difficult negotiations.

Auctions
A buyer specialist 
can provide you with an auction-winning strategy.  

Purchasing at auction is more often than not a more difficult process than just turning up and winning with the highest bid.  If you're in competition with other bidders, then the price can quickly go above your maximum offer. A buyer specialist can bid on your behalf, or provide you with a strategy prior to the auction to try and scare off the competition well before it reaches your max price.
  

Real estate salespeople's expectations of working with buyers
I have explained above some of the great reasons why somebody buying a house should work with a real estate salesperson.  
 
A real estate salesperson spends a lot of time working with buyers, often sacrificing their weekends and making themselves available outside the normal 9-5 work hours.  Therefore, a real estate salesperson expect buyers to work exclusively with them, so they don't put in all the hard work, just for a buyer to purchase a house through another salesperson.  Buyers should contact their salesperson directly to arrange any viewing for properties, instead of contacting the listing real estate salesperson.  Buyers should also have their wants and needs for a property clearly defined, to help make the job easier for their real estate salesperson to find the right property.
Harcourts Real Estate