Buying a house without a realtor

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AkwardDoct@rd
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Buying a house without a realtor

Post by AkwardDoct@rd »

Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
b4nash
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by b4nash »

I believe there is no benefit to buying without a realtor. Have you checked into Redfin?
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fortfun
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by fortfun »

AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
I think it would be worth it to try without a realtor and negotiate the price down an additional 3%, since they won't have to pay your realtor. I figure I'm going to at least try that if I purchase another house. We got a good discount (15k) on our current house, new construction, because we didn't use a realtor when we visited the show home.
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AkwardDoct@rd
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by AkwardDoct@rd »

b4nash wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:41 pm I believe there is no benefit to buying without a realtor. Have you checked into Redfin?
There is another realtor I could use but they are in another city (~45 min away)

fortfun wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:43 pm
AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
I think it would be worth it to try without a realtor and negotiate the price down an additional 3%, since they won't have to pay your realtor. I figure I'm going to at least try that if I purchase another house. We got a good discount (15k) on our current house, new construction, because we didn't use a realtor when we visited the show home.
That is kinda what I was thinking about doing. I assumed I would get a real estate lawyer to look over the purchase agreement etc.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by WWJBDo »

Many factors inform the correct decision:
What state are you in? California is one of the most buyer-friendly in terms of state laws.
Does Redfin cover your area? they charge 1% and are aggressive about closing contracts.
You can use the selling agent if you like, especially where strong protections are in place for buyers. Then the agent has an incentive to suggest your offer, because they get both ends of the commission.
Have you asked on reddit.com? lots of legal advice there, which is going to be better than what you get here. No offense to other posters on this fine site.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by jharkin »

AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:46 pm
There is another realtor I could use but they are in another city (~45 min away)
Doesn't your Realtor have another colleague in their office they can refer you to for handling the bid??

I live in a small town of 15,000 people and the realtor I am working with has something like 20 other agents just in their local office (one of many agencies in town) they will refer me to in any conflict of interest situation... like I want to offer on one of her own listings, etc. Granted something like 3 of them do 90% of the brokers business, the rest are probably part timers dabbling - but such part timers would probably love to jump on a quick deal in progress.


Realtors are a dime a dozen, you shouldn't need to drive 4 minutes, let alone 45, to find one if you are in a city.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by J295 »

Unless you are an experienced real estate person, use a hard working experienced realtor to help you
260chrisb
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by 260chrisb »

Of course you can buy a house without a realtor. The world is full if FSBO houses. I did it, although the seller was a close and long time friend. You have the same process of negotiating the ask/sell price, you have to and want to have an appraisal ( especially assuming a mortgage), do a title search, have an inspection done, have a purchase agreement drafted by an attorney, give earnest money, and of course negotiate possession and time of closing. It's a bit different of course if you don't know the seller but doing all this is pretty easy and in my case the seller had full access and the ability to review the purchase agreement my attorney drafted and was welcome to suggest changes.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee »

In many US jurisdictions the realtor you work with as a buyer is an agent, but is not your agent. They're a subcontractor of the seller's agent, complete with all the fiduciary duties toward the seller that come with being their agent.

Yes, I bought my dwelling without being a realtor's customer. I was very careful in choosing a real estate attorney, based on a recommendation from a colleague who had bought and sold several rental properties. The lawyer worked for me, not for anybody else. The fee ended up less than 1% of the sales price. Around here a subcontractor could expect to get around 3%.

I offered well below asking price and the seller agreed within a few hours. I don't know the extent to which the seller's agent helped fund it by reducing their commission, what with not having to pay somebody else half. It also helped that I strategically shopped in November and December, when at least around here there's little going on in the real estate market.

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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by Wildebeest »

We have bought and sold houses without real estate agents and it worked for us. My son (Boglehead) and daughter in law used a real estate agent when they bought a very expensive house and specifically did not want to use Redfin after researching it all carefully.

I think that buying a house without a realtor should save you 3 %. Selling a house without a realtor may save you 6 %. However you should keep your eyes wide open and depending on the market you may be better off with a buyer's agent.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by tmcc »

J295 wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2019 8:13 amhard working experienced realtor
:? :? :?
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by Blueskies123 »

J295 wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2019 8:13 am Unless you are an experienced real estate person, use a hard working experienced realtor to help you
Hard working? My last two houses I found on my own by driving around in neighborhoods I liked. All they did was open the door and let me walk around. At closing, once I signed the contract and they got their check the realtor stood up and walked out. I am sure some realtors work hard for people that have no idea what they can afford, how to finance, or where they want to live but I suspect that for many Bogleheads the realtor does very little other than split the commission check.
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quantAndHold
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by quantAndHold »

I would think especially in a multiple offer situation, you would want a realtor.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by stan1 »

Blueskies123 wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:27 am Hard working? My last two houses I found on my own by driving around in neighborhoods I liked. All they did was open the door and let me walk around. At closing, once I signed the contract and they got their check the realtor stood up and walked out. I am sure some realtors work hard for people that have no idea what they can afford, how to finance, or where they want to live but I suspect that for many Bogleheads the realtor does very little other than split the commission check.
Situations vary but as a buyer and seller I've encountered several situations where a realtor added plenty of value
1) Seller turned out to be crazy but she had a good house by some miracle. The two agents schemed to get her to close sale.
2) In a multiple offer situation we had to bid more than we wanted. The house appraised under our offer. The house had some inspection issues like a broken dishwasher. We were prepared to pay what we offered but I told my realtor to renegotiate as best he could. He took it on as a fun assignment and got us $33K back which more than paid his commission.
3) Parents house needed a lot of work before listing [new roof, painting, finishing off an unfinished bathroom remodel, new flooring]. Agent used her professional contacts to bring in fast and affordable contractors (and a handyman). Probably netted $25K extra on those improvements and the price was not negotiated down by inspection.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by MoneyBlawg »

If you're in a competitive bidding situation, or in one of those hot markets where multiple bids on a home is the norm, one strategy is to use the seller's agent as your real estate agent. In a market where you're going to largely be a price taker, you can use the seller's agent's financial incentive to get a double commission to your advantage to win the deal. The seller's agent may even be willing to work with you to take a smaller cut of the buy-side commission and pass that along to the seller. Just make sure you're aware of comps and look at those independently through Redfin and other publicly available resources.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by bsteiner »

Blueskies123 wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:27 am ... I suspect that for many Bogleheads the realtor does very little other than split the commission check.
He/she brought in the buyer.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by abuss368 »

I have never tried it but when selling our last property, we had a realtor that was excellent. He has quite a reputation and has built an extensive real estate company with both services and investments in properties.

In my opinion, with a good realtor, there is value provided.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by serbeer »

Did very little, yes, but refunded us 1/3 of commission he received as buyer agent
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by sil2017 »

I bought a house without a realtor . Since the house I bought was from a listing agent and I didn’t have a realtor , upon closing the listing agent credited me with 3k.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by c.coyle »

Just keep in mind that when you buy a house, you are probably engaging in the biggest financial transaction of your life, and you will be signing some of the most complicated and obtuse legal documents known to man, which will commit you for the next 15 to 30 years.

Unless you have your own agent or your own attorney, you are on your own when you are sitting at the settlement table. None of those people surrounding you is looking out primarily for you, nor are they required (in most states) to be - not the seller, not the listing agent, not the seller's agent, not the lender, not the title company agent. The seller wants to unload his house. The listing and seller's agents want their commission checks. The lender wants to put the loan on its books. The title company wants its premium.

So, if there is some sort of problem at settlement - and it happens - you are on your own. If you have a question that you didn't anticipate before settlement, you are on your own. I'm not saying these people will intentionally try to stick it to you, but if push comes to shove, those people will put their interests before yours.

Your own agent or your own attorney are the only people who are duty bound to put your interests above all others. I think it's foolish not to spend a few hundred extra bucks when you're buying a house for a few hundred grand.

(Disclosure: I've never been in the real estate business. I am a recently retired attorney, but never did real estate work)
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by Sam1 »

c.coyle wrote: Sun Apr 21, 2019 5:41 pm Just keep in mind that when you buy a house, you are probably engaging in the biggest financial transaction of your life, and you will be signing some of the most complicated and obtuse legal documents known to man, which will commit you for the next 15 to 30 years.

Unless you have your own agent or your own attorney, you are on your own when you are sitting at the settlement table. None of those people surrounding you is looking out primarily for you, nor are they required (in most states) to be - not the seller, not the listing agent, not the seller's agent, not the lender, not the title company agent. The seller wants to unload his house. The listing and seller's agents want their commission checks. The lender wants to put the loan on its books. The title company wants its premium.

So, if there is some sort of problem at settlement - and it happens - you are on your own. If you have a question that you didn't anticipate before settlement, you are on your own. I'm not saying these people will intentionally try to stick it to you, but if push comes to shove, those people will put their interests before yours.

Your own agent or your own attorney are the only people who are duty bound to put your interests above all others. I think it's foolish not to spend a few hundred extra bucks when you're buying a house for a few hundred grand.

(Disclosure: I've never been in the real estate business. I am a recently retired attorney, but never did real estate work)
Your entire post supports why someone should hire an ATTORNEY. Not a real estate agent. A real estate agent is not supposed to be providing legal advice on a contract. Nor should you accept legal advice from a real estate agent. Additionally, a real estate agent has limited ability to help you if something goes terribly wrong. Not sure what you really think a real estate agent can do besides say something that you don’t want to say. Also, most of us on here are well aware that an agent, even a buyer’s agent, doesn’t necessarily have your best interest at heart.

This is ignoring the fact that a real estate contract and settlement is extremely simple. I can’t imagine needing assistance with either. There are three contingencies and the price of the house, escrow, etc. It really isn’t that complicated.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by aspirit »

Easier than ever w/today’s I.T. :D
I never used a realtor.
The value was there that’s why their there, right?
Fiduciary ? Like financial planners?
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by Sandtrap »

I have bought and sold properties without a realtor. Sometimes having the Title Company handle everything for reduced fees. But also have used realtors. Depends on the situation.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by bikechuck »

My wife and I recently sold our home of 28 years with the help of an excellent realtor. It sold in one weekend with over 10 offers for well over our asking price. The realtor listed it for a bit less that other realtors suggested with the hope of starting a bidding war. The strategy worked perfectly. They also recommended a mover who we used (after interviewing others) that did an excellent job for us.

We bought our new place (new construction) on our own but in hindsight we wished we had used the realtor that sold our home to help us with the purchase. We probably could have and should have escrowed some of our purchase price until some initial repairs were made, the lawn was sodded etc.as our neighbors did that had the help of a realtor. Escrowing a portion of the purchase price is something that we did not think of that a good realtor would have known to ask for. In our case it would not have saved us any money but it might have gotten us more timely attention with some of the minor repairs that were needed which are inevitable with new construction.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by sapper1371 »

Have bought and sold several houses without an agent. What they do these days with the internet available to you to earn their fees is beyond me. I suppose it’s good if you need a lot of hand holding but if you are just looking for someone to take care of the logistics they are a waste of money IMO.

I’m sure there are good people in the business but I think of them a pretty much as used car salesman.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by bsteiner »

sapper1371 wrote: Sun Apr 21, 2019 9:16 pm Have bought and sold several houses without an agent. What they do these days with the internet available to you to earn their fees is beyond me. I suppose it’s good if you need a lot of hand holding but if you are just looking for someone to take care of the logistics they are a waste of money IMO.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by sapper1371 »

bsteiner wrote: Sun Apr 21, 2019 9:22 pm
They find buyers and sell the houses to the buyers.
Unfortunately this typically isn’t the case. Rather than “find buyers” they post listings and let the internet do what the internet does.

If you are a buyer they fill out the search criteria, hit enter, and forward you the search results.

Seems like something most people can do on their own no :confused
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by WolfgangPauli »

Yes, I would buy without a realtor but NEVER without a lawyer.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by BogleBoogie »

AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
Not sure if it varies by State, but we are currently in escrow and using one agent for both parties. I think it depends on the situation, but there are times where it is reasonable to have a dual agent.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by c.coyle »

Sam1 wrote: Sun Apr 21, 2019 6:28 pm
c.coyle wrote: Sun Apr 21, 2019 5:41 pm Just keep in mind that when you buy a house, you are probably engaging in the biggest financial transaction of your life, and you will be signing some of the most complicated and obtuse legal documents known to man, which will commit you for the next 15 to 30 years.

Unless you have your own agent or your own attorney, you are on your own when you are sitting at the settlement table. None of those people surrounding you is looking out primarily for you, nor are they required (in most states) to be - not the seller, not the listing agent, not the seller's agent, not the lender, not the title company agent. The seller wants to unload his house. The listing and seller's agents want their commission checks. The lender wants to put the loan on its books. The title company wants its premium.

So, if there is some sort of problem at settlement - and it happens - you are on your own. If you have a question that you didn't anticipate before settlement, you are on your own. I'm not saying these people will intentionally try to stick it to you, but if push comes to shove, those people will put their interests before yours.

Your own agent or your own attorney are the only people who are duty bound to put your interests above all others. I think it's foolish not to spend a few hundred extra bucks when you're buying a house for a few hundred grand.

(Disclosure: I've never been in the real estate business. I am a recently retired attorney, but never did real estate work)
Your entire post supports why someone should hire an ATTORNEY. Not a real estate agent. A real estate agent is not supposed to be providing legal advice on a contract. Nor should you accept legal advice from a real estate agent. Additionally, a real estate agent has limited ability to help you if something goes terribly wrong. Not sure what you really think a real estate agent can do besides say something that you don’t want to say. Also, most of us on here are well aware that an agent, even a buyer’s agent, doesn’t necessarily have your best interest at heart.

This is ignoring the fact that a real estate contract and settlement is extremely simple. I can’t imagine needing assistance with either. There are three contingencies and the price of the house, escrow, etc. It really isn’t that complicated.
You are correct. Given what I did for a living for almost 40 years, I guess I was trying to be evenhanded and not seem to biased. We attorneys want people to like us. 8-)

So, let me drop all pretense: You are crazy if you buy a house without an attorney. Your attorney is the only person at the settlement table who is looking out solely for your best interests. She is working for a flat, or at least well-defined, fee, not on commission. Sort of like a fee only financial planner. Everyone else at the table has at least divided loyalties. Your attorney isn't trying to close a sale.

It will cost you a couple hundred bucks extra in a transaction worth a couple hundred thousand.

I bought three properties during my law practicing years. Two homes and an office building. I paid for an attorney each time.

Real estate agents will try to tell you that you don't need an attorney because she will just slow things down by asking all sorts of questions, and demanding all sorts of assurances, and insisting on an owner's title policy (as opposed to a lender's title policy. Big difference), or a better inspection, or a quit claim for that tiny little grey area in the description or title chain, and thus screw up settlement and make it harder for you to get your dream home.

Nonsense. Would you skip having a pre-sale physical inspection by an engineer just to save a few bucks?

There. I said it.
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serbeer
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

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During my latest closing, my attorney discovered and fixed on the spot a problem with the way ownership was formulated in the deed, something about tenancy in common, not sure exactly. So I believe I got my money worth.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by hand »

AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
This seems like the holy grail of a multiple offer scenario - you've potentially just been freed of 2-3% overhead of your offer and have the option to co-opt the seler's realtor to your own ends:

Option 1: Use the selling realtor; the commission "you" pay won't be significantly less, but your liklihood of winning the house is increased becasue the selling realtor is strongly motiviated to promote you as the buyer so they can capture a significantly larger commission.

Option 2: Represent yourself, and offer same amount as other buyer - you are a more desirable buyer because net proceeds of a sale to you will be higher for the seller.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by samsoes »

sapper1371 wrote: Sun Apr 21, 2019 9:33 pm
bsteiner wrote: Sun Apr 21, 2019 9:22 pm
They find buyers and sell the houses to the buyers.
Unfortunately this typically isn’t the case. Rather than “find buyers” they post listings and let the internet do what the internet does.

If you are a buyer they fill out the search criteria, hit enter, and forward you the search results.

Seems like something most people can do on their own no :confused
Humm....but who pays the internet to do its thing? :?:
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by ebabin »

Blueskies123 wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:27 am
J295 wrote: Sat Apr 20, 2019 8:13 am Unless you are an experienced real estate person, use a hard working experienced realtor to help you
Hard working? My last two houses I found on my own by driving around in neighborhoods I liked. All they did was open the door and let me walk around. At closing, once I signed the contract and they got their check the realtor stood up and walked out. I am sure some realtors work hard for people that have no idea what they can afford, how to finance, or where they want to live but I suspect that for many Bogleheads the realtor does very little other than split the commission check.
Ditto your remarks, including finding your own houses. Many of the realtors I worked with weren't showing me what I was asking for and I had to do the foot work of proving to myself that these houses existed.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by simplesimon »

We are looking to buy in the same town our agent lives in (we don't currently live in this town) so his feedback about neighborhoods and comps have been helpful. Additionally, he owns investment properties and seems to know a lot about construction so on every open house we go to he's pointed out damage, stains, and the like that we would not have noticed on our own. I realize an inspector is supposed to report all of these things but this is before an offer is even put in and it doesn't hurt to have an extra pair of eyes to look for these things. On top of that he has given us heads up on properties coming to market via his network.

We interviewed a few agents before choosing one and all of them said that about 80% of their transactions are where the buyer found the property so we were aware of that going in. We might need more hand holding than a lot of the DIY'ers on the forums here and have found him to be valuable so far.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by leeish »

You don't "need" a realtor. In many states, all the forms to buy/sell a home are published online. It's a transaction like any other and most of the work is actually completed by the title company. They can probably provide you with the REPC for your state. Read through it but generally after you agree on a price, you get a period of time to back out of the contract for various reasons.

The first few weeks you generally have time to inspect the house. If there is anything you don't like you can back out without any cost to you.
The next little bit is generally for funding. If for any reason you can't secure funding, you can back out without any cost to you.

It's pretty simple really, and the REPC is just to standardize things. You can change anything you want by simple adding an addendum. In Utah, it's a pretty simple straight forward contract. It helps protect the seller from people making an offer and then bailing last second. Generally it requires them to pay earnest money which they forfeit if they back out of the purchase outside of the timelines listed in the contract. It doesn't really protect the buyer much, but there is some stuff generally included about the property and often an supplemental addendum with a questionnaire about the property.

Really though, your title company stands to make money from the sale, so if you talk to once, they will know a lot about the transaction process. For straight forward sales, real estate agents aren't that necessary. All that being said, seeing as you are buying from one though, and seller's generally pay the fees, I'd get one. There isn't a good reason to not use one as a buyer. I've sold without one before, but never bought.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by Regattamom »

I don't know about other states, but where I live the listing agent is the one who has negotiated the commission with the seller which is usually 5 - 6 percent. And then the listing agent splits the commission with a buyer's agent.

The listing agent does not have to reduce the commission if you do not want to come to the table with representation. You can try to negotiate, but there's no guarantee you will save any money.
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by nolesrule »

Well, apparently if you live in New Jersey and you are looking to build out of state, you need an agent or the builder's won't even talk to you. Something about New Jersey having a non-solicitation law... even if the potential buyer is the one who initiates contact.
Van
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by Van »

I have bought two houses and sold one without the involvement of a realtor being involved.

The title company handles all of the paperwork. As long as you pay close attention to the numbers, it is pretty straight forward.
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lthenderson
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by lthenderson »

Like others, I have bought two houses without a realtor though neither were competitive bidding situations which might affect things a bit. Contrary to many, those same two houses were bought without lawyers involved for either me or the sellers. In both cases, my bank handled the title search and abstracting to verify my loan from them and the "complex documents" consisted of a single page standardized document very much like the ones most realtors use. Good experiences both times.
Hulu
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by Hulu »

Pros:

1.). More likely to get the house if bidding war
2.). Potential discount on house
3.). More available times to schedule tours

Cons:

1.). You may overlook something that an experienced person may help discover issues
2.). You may waste time on houses you don’t know aren’t good for you
JGoneRiding
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by JGoneRiding »

fortfun wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:43 pm
AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
I think it would be worth it to try without a realtor and negotiate the price down an additional 3%, since they won't have to pay your realtor. I figure I'm going to at least try that if I purchase another house. We got a good discount (15k) on our current house, new construction, because we didn't use a realtor when we visited the show home.
Doesn't work that way. If the seller has contracted with a realtor they pay that fee no matter what and don't get any sort of discount via contract if seller doesn't bring their own realtor.

On a practical note the seller will have a hard time reviewing offer and alterations with out it being standard realtor if that is what they have been use to doing.
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fortfun
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by fortfun »

JGoneRiding wrote: Mon May 06, 2019 4:15 pm
fortfun wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:43 pm
AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
I think it would be worth it to try without a realtor and negotiate the price down an additional 3%, since they won't have to pay your realtor. I figure I'm going to at least try that if I purchase another house. We got a good discount (15k) on our current house, new construction, because we didn't use a realtor when we visited the show home.
Doesn't work that way. If the seller has contracted with a realtor they pay that fee no matter what and don't get any sort of discount via contract if seller doesn't bring their own realtor.

On a practical note the seller will have a hard time reviewing offer and alterations with out it being standard realtor if that is what they have been use to doing.
I think fees are always negotiable. If not, fine walk away and let them find another buyer.
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unclescrooge
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by unclescrooge »

AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
Approach the listing agent and ask them to represent you.
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JaneyLH
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by JaneyLH »

I bought a house from a developer in a planned community I selected and didn't use a real estate agent to find the property since it was 1/2 mile from my existing house.

When I first met with the developer's real estate agent, she brought along another agent from her office and told me he was "my" agent. "No", I said, he is not my agent. I have another agent. The meeting came to a grinding halt and we set up a new meeting where "my" agent would attend.

I then sought out the agent I used to purchase my last home, who I thought highly of. I explained the situation and offered her the commission if she would cut the fee down to 1% instead of 3%. She conferred with her broker, and accepted. I assume they split the fee. She attended one meeting and collected the fee. I was happy not to put money into the developer's pocket via his agent, and also happy to have the protection of a real estate agent/broker representing my interests in case something turned out legally stinky.

There's nothing magic about 3%.
mrmass
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by mrmass »

Please enlighten me. Doesn't the RE agent really work for whomever is pays them? Payment comes from the seller so in my mind they work for the seller.
athan
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by athan »

AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
We bought without a realtor, which eventually saved us money. We started out $60,000 apart with the seller, and negotiated over a 3 month period. I believe we saved about 5-10 grand. You have to be willing to negotiate yourself, as the realtor will ultimately be representing buyer and seller. In our case the realtor cut commission down to 4% to bridge the gap.
JGoneRiding
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by JGoneRiding »

athan wrote: Mon May 06, 2019 6:15 pm
AkwardDoct@rd wrote: Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:39 pm Has anyone bought a house without a realtor? A kinda awkward situation developed (realtor with myself and another client and we both wanted to place an offer but the other client chose to place first). The realtor stated it would be a conflict of interest to represent both parties which I think is reasonable. Anyone have experience without using a realtor?
We bought without a realtor, which eventually saved us money. We started out $60,000 apart with the seller, and negotiated over a 3 month period. I believe we saved about 5-10 grand. You have to be willing to negotiate yourself, as the realtor will ultimately be representing buyer and seller. In our case the realtor cut commission down to 4% to bridge the gap.
As.long as you realize in an even moderate market that isn't realistic.

In a "hot" market our appropriate priced house from listing to close was not even 30 days!
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AkwardDoct@rd
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by AkwardDoct@rd »

I eventually went with a realtor. I used one out of town that I had worked with in the past on other deals. We did 3% total which saved the sellers money and used for negotiation. TI found the realtor to provide value with navigating the process and added some guidance with certain issues which likely was worth the fee (which I didn't have to pay anyways).
canjoos
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Re: Buying a house without a realtor

Post by canjoos »

I agree with the skeptics on this thread. One of the freakonomics books had a chapter on how realtors sell their houses for more than their clients. They used to add value but the internet has bridged most, if not all, of the information asymmetry. We found an honest IT professional that doubled as a realtor and he gave all of his commission back minus flat fee ($2000 buy, $3000 for sell). We did most of the work, but we managed to sell our house in a down market for more than our neighbors who used a seasoned agent. Also, the agents only care that the sale happens. Not that the client gets the best price-3 % of the margin does not matter to them so they do not advocate for it. They are more loyal to other agents than their own clients. While there may be many honest agents out there, the incentives are perverse. Ditch 'em. The only people that tell you that you need agents are actual agents. I find similar trends for accountants though have managed to finally find a good accountant.
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