Whether you are looking for a house or a condominium, you can use the help of a property finder. Today’s property finders take both the form of a knowledgeable real estate professional and more often than not an online property searching website. It is true that online real estate services provide homebuyers with the convenience of research at their fingertips and tons of choices, it is still hard to replace the personalized services of a well-trained and well informed property finder or search agent or buyer broker, whatever they are called.
With their wide range of knowledge and experience in the market, especially their familiarity with the neighborhood they specialize in, real estate brokers will be able to help the homebuyer find the best homes based on their requirements and criteria. Problem is that brokers work on commissions, so it’s in their best interest to conclude the deal at a good price, but not necessarily at the best price for the buyer. This is where property finders fit in because they work specifically for you, the homebuyer.
Leave the “Dirty” Work to the Property Finder
If you know what you want but just don’t have the time and patience to sift through all the choices day in and day out, a property find is definitely worth a try. It’s in your and your property finder’s best interest to develop a thorough understanding of your wants and needs, your requirements and criteria, your usage and goal, and any other special requests you may have. Armed with this in-depth knowledge and his/her own expertise, your broker will examine countless condos and houses for sale to find those that match your criteria.
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The property finder will do a screening of a number of properties that fit your criteria and visit them in order to determine a handful of them for you to make your own visit. This is very much like how headhunters work who provide you with a shortlist. This process alone will save you an enormous amount of time and hassle.
Tap into Their “Insider” Network
Property finders not only search for homes in the open market, they also have their own private networks. They generally have their connections in the business that gives them an edge in terms of time to market and value added. They may even pay some real estate agents to have priority access to their new properties before they are listed in the MLS system. They are also tipped off whenever “off-market” properties appear or properties that won’t go on the open market at all. Some of them scour the location for private sales.
Take Advantage of Their Expertise
Thanks to their inside knowledge of the area they serve, property finders know the place like the palm of their hand. They know exactly which street to avoid, or who are your next door neighbors, or if an ad is hiding certain facts about the property.
When it comes to the final stage of negotiations, they have the strategies and techniques to score you the best deals, not only saving you the hassle of haggling but also the embarrassment of getting emotional with the seller. As part of their job, they can keep their cool and avoid falling into selling pressure and traps.
How Much Does a Property Finder Cost?
Property finders charge pretty much like real estate brokers, ie, they charge a commission. Don’t be surprised, though, if a property finder charges you a retainer upfront because they want to make sure that you are a serious buyer and they won’t waste their time. Once the transaction is closed, the property finder takes a commission anywhere from 1% to 3% of the property purchase price. If the property you are buying is for investment purposes, the commission may be deductible. So you may have used a professional service for free.