BUYER'S BROKER

If you bought a property through a real estate agent, you probably assumed that he/she was working for you. Nice thought, but wrong. Agents have a fiduciary relationship with the SELLER and are precluded from doing anything but getting the best price and terms for the seller. So a regular buyer probably paid more and and got worse terms. But a buyer's broker works exclusively for a BUYER and therefore can negotiate more forcefully irrespective of any negative impact on the seller. You may need to pay a retainer- $200 to $1,000. Flat fees run 2% to 5% of the target price of the home- lower for higher priced homes. The fee is either paid by buyer from the loan or from a commission from the house- which can be part of the "normal" 6% commission. Many regular brokers don't like this method since it circumvents the normal procedure- I know because I have done it. But it can save a lot of money. A recent study by U.S. Sprint in relocating 232 employees showed a savings of 5%- that's $7,500 on a $150,000 home. The National Association of Realtors has finally recognized the few that provide such service and you can either check a local Board of Realtors or call the Buyer's Broker Registry in Ventura California at 800 729-5147.

A 1992 study by the Consumers Federation of America shows buyers will pay on average 5% less that had they gone to a traditional broker. The study was conducted in 17 sections of the country in 1992.

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