Is it too late to seek a buyer's agent?

Asked by evonzippa, Charlotte, NC Thu Aug 15, 2013

I have spoken to a new homes sales agent. Toured some of the models. I haven't committed to anything other than seeking prequalification through their preferred lender.
Also, should I seek more than one preapproval?

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Kristen Shinault’s answer
Kristen Shin…, Agent, Charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
No, it is not too late. I always recommend using a buyer's agent when purchasing new construction. A new home sales rep can be very helpful in helping you choose which floorplan and options suite your style, but ultimately, they work for the builder and have the builder's interests in mind. You need an agent that is working for you and putting your interests first. Having a buyer's agent should not cost you anything since the commission is usually paid by the seller (or builder) and the benefits are well worth taking the time to find someone you trust and can work with easily.

I would love the opportunity to speak with you about how I can help you navigate the new home building process and how I will work for you to get you into your new house. Feel free to contact me by phone or email to learn more!

As for speaking with lenders, definitely get a second (or third) opinion. You want to be able to compare rates, loan programs, down payment options and closing costs/lender fees.

Hope this helps!

Kristen Shinault
REALTOR®, Keller Williams
0 votes
belinda agos…, Agent, Charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
As long as there is no written commitment, it's never too late to hire a buyer's agent when considering a new home. And yes, it's a good idea to "shop around" for a mortgage. If your preapproval was from the builder's lender be careful. On the surface it may appear to be a great deal with all the "incentives" they offer, but in the long-term, oftentimes, it is not. This is where I come in. I can help you make educated, informed decisions to that you don't end up with buyer's remorse!

I have a track record of very happy clients and I'll be happy to provide references. Also, I have plenty of experience with working with new construction. In fact, I may know the builder/builder rep you talked to!

An opportunity to be of service would be an honor! I'm here seven days a week so please do not hesitate to contact me!

Belinda Agosto, Realtor, CDPE, CIAS
ERA Wilkinson & Associates Real Estate
1 vote
Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Thu Aug 15, 2013
It's never too late to try.....did the builder's representative ask if you were working with an agent? If not, I wouldn't wait to play this card. If they want your business they should be willing to work with you on this matter.

Builder representation will likely tell you that having your own agent is unnecessary, that they can take care of everything for you. This may be true, but where do you feel their allegience rests...with you of their company? This system contains a built in "conflict of interest" that should not be overlooked.

From my perspective, you've made another mistake....with financing. We always recommend that buyers consider getting pre-approved for financing prior to meeting with a builder. This doesn't mean you can't listen to their offerings but it should keep them honest with their approach.

We would also recommend visiting multiple builders in the area to see how they are priced and what their incentives might be. This could arm you with information you could use to assist with your negotiations.

There are three things new construction buyers should consider: viewing multiple communities, working with their personal agent, and getting pre-approved for financing.

Good luck,

1 vote
Jennifer Mas…, Agent, Indian Trail, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
No, it is not too late to get buyer representation. It is good having someone advocating for you through the process (whether it is new construction or an existing home). Also, I think it is good to check out more than one lender. It is likely that they have offered seller paid closing costs if you use their lender. Just be sure that the interest rate is comparable to another lender, so that what looks like paid closing costs is not masked by a slightly higher interest rate.

Check out my Trulia profile to see what other clients have said about working with me. This way, you can get to know me & see if you would like to hire me to help you purchase your new home. It doesn't cost you anything to have buyer representation, so... you may as well!!
Jen Masucci
1 vote
Debra M. Buck, , Charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
Good morning!

It should not be too late to bring in your Buyer's Agent. Some Builders might give you some push back because you did not Register your Agent at the time of Tour but they aren't going to want to loose your sale either. It is a very good thing to use a Buyer's Agent on New Construction as the Onsite clearly represents the Builder and not the Buyer's best interests.

If you are going to Interview Agents, I would love the opportunity. I have sold several new construction homes to my Buyer Clients us I used to work for a Builder.

I hope to hear from you!


Debra M Buck
HM Properties
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1 vote
Dustin Baggs, Agent, McKinney, TX
Thu Aug 22, 2013
I agree not to late, always helps to have someone with a vested interest on your side.
0 votes
Daniel Fisher, Agent, Charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 22, 2013
Good evening, Evon:
You may want to read the Trulia Real Estate Blog "Buyer Agent Advocate for New Home Construction", then pick an agent to exclusively represent you. If you have a full time agent with a Masters degree in Planning with Finance and over two decades of experience, working for you, you will likely do better in negotiations. I'd be pleased to provide that service. If you appreciate this answer, please give it a thumbs up, or if this was the most helpful answer, please say thanks with a best answer click.
0 votes
Linda Hoverm…, Agent, Charlotte, NC
Tue Aug 20, 2013
It's always best to speak to more than one loan officer and it's always best to speak to more than one Realtor. Interview several to see who you feel you best "click" with. Ask lots of questions and make sure the agent knows the area, the inventory, the sales statistics, etc. Charlotte is a very complicated city with pockets of great appreciation and pockets of negative appreciation. Ex. parts of zip code 28277 are near 2006 prices again, while parts of 28269 are still at 2003 prices. Ask those questions, keep a notebook and make educated choices. A buyer's agent should be willing to sit down with you first and ask lots of questions to get to know you and your wants and needs in a home. Good luck!
0 votes
John Siddons…, Agent, Charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
You have the right to buyer agent representation prior to signing a contract. Contact me directly if you'd like help with the process of new construction (or even if you'd like to go re-sale). Also, I do recommend getting second opinions on a pre-approval. I have a lender that does a second opinion program that gives incentives.

Let me know how I can help!

John Siddons
0 votes
Amy Baker, Agent, Charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
It's absolutely not too late. Last spring I had a buyer call me to help him with new construction. He had gone as far as picking the home with the builder he wanted and almost signed a contract. Before he signed, he respectfully told the on site sales agent that he wouldn't sign a contract until he had his own representation. He called me the next day and I jumped in to help him through the process.

If I can do the same for you, I'd love to hear from you.

Amy Baker
Allen Tate Realtors
0 votes
Robin Faison, Agent, Huntersville, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013

It is not too late to hire a buyer agent. And, I suggest that your buyer agent sit down with all of the paperwork that you have been given to review it. Probably just as important as the house, the lot is a huge factor in your enjoyment of the property, and then re-sale at a later date once you are ready to move up or on in life. Ask your realtor to review all of the lots in the subdivision with you to make sure that you are getting the most for your money. There might also be changes in the floor plan that can be made to make the place unique or more livable. Your realtor may be able to help you with interior selections for your new pad that give it a punch or pow!

Yes, you should get more than one pre-approval. Be sure to ask for a good faith estimate detailing all of the costs to buy a house. I can recommend lenders to you. Get your realtor to review those with you.

Congrats on your decision to own a home,
Robin Faison, broker
0 votes
, ,
Thu Aug 15, 2013
And you definitely should talk to more than one lender!

Unless of course the builder's preferred lender has made you feel extremely comfortable and confident in their ability to provide you with the best rate and terms of your life's biggest purchase.

If nothing else, you can go directly to my website and compare the rates, terms and fees of the transaction using our online real time loan origination engine to see how Guaranteed Rate, Inc., "America's Home Purchase Experts" stacks up against the competition and you don't have to even talk to me at ALL if you don't want!

Bottom line is for you to feel comfortable and confident in the professionals you are working with!

Congrats on your decision to build and buy!
0 votes
John Goddin, Agent, Chapel Hill, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
You can hire a buyers agent at any time. What you may want to know is if the builder and/or the listing broker will pay your buyers agent. To get that answer, you will need to ask the builder's rep what their policy is on paying buyer's agents. Some builders may require the agent to accompany you and register you on your initial visit.
0 votes
dave, Agent, Charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
It is not to late to get a buyer's agent involved in a transaction. You would be wise to get a buyer's agent. The builder's on site agent represents the builder and not you the buyer. Their interest are strictly tied to protecting the builder and getting the builder as much money as possible for the house.

I have written a blog post on to why you should have a buyer's agent help you through the process. Besides the fact they can help explain the process to you. There is added benefit in negotiation and ensuring you are getting the best possible treatment when dealing with the builder. I have saved clients countless amounts of money and time and helped them make sure they have made the right decision in terms of options and features in a house.

The builder pays the commission to the buyer's agent and it does not cost you anything. A lot of people are under the impression if they do not use a buyer's agent they can save some additional money. However; that is rarely the case. The builder is making sure they are going to get a price for the house whether they pay the commission or not because it would affect the other values in the neighborhood if they deducted it that much.

You have the benefit of a buyer's agent pointing out to you the issues and what may be with the house and not included with the house that you may want and I know from personal experience that I will ask questions with the buyer present to the builder's agent to make sure we are all on the same page on what is in the house and the difference with the upgrades....

I believe a buyer's agent role is to provide you with a level of service that ensures you are getting the best deal possible and that you getting what you want in the house and know that the house I being built as you want it. I am there throughout the process and go to the house periodically to check on it with you and go to all buyer inspections and walk through to make sure there are no issues with the house going up.

If I can help you out please reach out to me via e-mail at or my cell at 704-519-7895.

Dave diCecco
Coldwell Banker United
0 votes
Marlene Bien…, Agent, Tallahassee, FL
Thu Aug 15, 2013
I suggest you hire a buyers agent to protect you. A buyers agent only represents you in a real estate transaction. As for preferred lender you should shop your mortgage to get the best possible mortgage for you and your pocket. Remember this is a mortgage you will have for the next 30 years. Once you hire a buyers agent he or she will guide you every step of the way. Best of luck
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0 votes
Jackie Young, Agent, Denver, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
Which neighborhood did you visit? Are you planning to purchase a home in that neighborhood? Usually you have to tell them you are working with a buyer's agent from the beginning, but it may not be too late! I would love to help you with your home purchase. If you are interested in seeing other homes or neighborhoods I would be happy to assist you as well. Please send me an email at or call me 704-575-9202. Thanks!!
0 votes
My NC Homes…, Agent, Chapel Hill, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
It should not be too late to get a buyer broker involved and you would be smart to do so. However you need to stop engagin directly on your own with the builder rep, the longer you do, the less likely they will be to honor your buyer broker. There is no reason at this time to get more than one this time.
0 votes
Candace Ellis, Agent, charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013
A buyers agent can help walk you through the process.(They cost you nothing) A buyers agent has many sources to help with financing, inspections and many other questions that may arise.
Thanks for your interest,

Ellis Group Realty, Inc.
Candace Ellis

Let 28+ years experience work for YOU!
0 votes
Michael Bowm…, Agent, Charlotte, NC
Thu Aug 15, 2013

No it is not too late at all. In fact, I would highly recommend you get a good buyer's agent to represent you, as opposed to having the seller's rep represent you.

I am a buyer's agent in Charlotte and the surrounding areas. Give me a call or shoot me an email and we will begin the process!

Michael Bowman
Benham Real Estate Group
0 votes
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