You may be of the opinion that you don't need a real estate agent and that using one will add to the cost of buying your new home.
The fact is that a real estate agent's fees are typically paid by the seller of the home. So, as a buyer, you can get the services of a professional real estate agent without having to directly pay for it. Please confirm this in any paperwork or contracts that a real estate agent may provide because policies vary greatly by state and company. Be sure to ask about fees when you interview agents.
Most of these agents may work with buyers and sellers but often they specialize in working with one or the other. Make sure the agent that you choose has experience working with buyers and with no down payment transactions.
Be careful if you are speaking with a real estate agent and they don't seem to recognize terms like "Down Payment Assistance Program".
Start making a list of possible real estate agents to interview with referrals from your lender, friends and family.
A referral from the lender is great because you get the services from people that have worked together in the past and are already familiar with each other's systems. This can help prevent any last minute surprises or obstacles.
Questions to ask while you are interviewing an agent:
Please explain your fees.
Are you familiar with any no down payment financing programs?
Have you been involved with no down payment buyers in the past?
Would you mind providing sample contracts so I may review them?
Does it clearly state in the contract who will be paying your fees?
How long have you been a real estate agent?
Do you mostly work with buyers or sellers?
I'm looking for a home in the areas of ______. How familiar are you with those areas?
What specific steps would you take to help me find the home I am looking for?
You should also try to get an idea of these factors while you are speaking with the agent.
– Does this person have good negotiating skills?
– Do you feel this agent is trying to understand your situation so that they can properly represent you to sellers?
– How much knowledge does the agent have about mortgage markets?