WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW BEFORE BUYING NEW CONSTRUCTION!!!
When you are shopping for just the right home you want to be represented by someone who you can trust. A REALTOR is a State Licensed and trained professional that abides by a VERY strict CODE of ETHICS. (Click Here to view the Code of Ethics) A Licensed REALTOR performs many continuing education hours every year to keep their clients up to date on the latest real estate practices and laws.
Unfortunately most builders sales agents are not REALTORS. There is no limit to what they can say or do to get you to sign on the dotted line. You have to remember that the sales agent only works for the builder and does not have your best interest at heart. Builder's sales agents are rewarded by getting as many monthly sales and reservations as possible. In order to put a reservation on a home you must first put money down. In most cases you must put an additional deposit down when you sign a contract with the builder before you even know what you are buying. How will you know how much the cost of your home is going to be until you add in all of the upgrades and lot premiums. What are the Home Owner's Association/Condo Fees? Are they going to go up? If I change my mind, can I get out of this contract? How long will it take to get my money back?
Many verbal promises are used to entice you to put down a deposit for a reservation or contract. In most cases they will give you big discounts if you use only their lender. Whenever your choice is taken away with financial lures such as hardwood floors and Florida rooms you should stop and think, why would it matter if I use any bank that I prefer? Why wouldn't I get the discount or extras if I use cash? By using their lender, doesn't that give the builder a big advantage knowing all about my finances? That should be something that is shared only between me and my lender. How do I negotiate when they know exactly how much I have in monthly income and savings.
I have had many of my clients enter a new home showroom to see what is being offered just like you would when you're visiting an open house. When my client informs the salesperson they are working with a REALTOR the typical response is "We work with REALTORS all the time". What they very rarely tell you is that they will not pay your REALTOR because he or she did not bring you there. So again, they are taking away your choice to be represented by a professional who is only looking out for YOUR BEST INTEREST.
I know how confusing this must be. My clients ask, Why are they in the MLS or REALTOR.com if they are not REALTORS? I thought only REALTORS are allowed to sell homes? Shouldn't the person there tell me right away that they are not a REALTOR and that in the State of Delaware I have the right to be represented by a REALTOR? (Click Here to read the Consumer Information Statement provided by the State of Delaware)
The worst part of all this is when someone purchases what they thought was the home of their dreams and problems start to occur. This is also when they first realize they were stripped of their right to be represented by a REALTOR and there is no one on their side. When something goes wrong with the property and you turn to the sales agent for help good luck getting it. Helping with issues that arise after the sale is not the sales agent's job. You may get such answers as, that is not in the contract, call the main office, talk to the job supervisor, that is not covered, etc. Many buyers were made verbal promises by the builders sales agents that were never put in writing. When the sales agent is confronted about the false promises you will usually get a response like, I never said that, read your contract, where does it say that in writing.
USE A STATE LICENSED REALTOR, it does not cost you anything when you are the buyer. The REALTOR'S fee is already worked into the cost of the home. Find a REALTOR who is familiar with the builder and their quality of work along with the builders follow through after your home has been completed. When you inform the sales agent that you are working with a REALTOR and they respond that your REALTOR will not be compensated, WALK AWAY! That is the first step to isolate you from outside assistance and taking away your right to have someone represent you. Car dealerships do the same thing! You would never enter into any lengthy contract with a lot of money involved without consulting a Lawyer? The State of Delaware protects you by making it mandatory that only a Lawyer can do your settlement but the State is not very helpful with disputes between you and the builder. When ever you enter a builder showroom ALWAYS ask the sales agent if they are a REALTOR and what Real Estate firm do they broker under. When visiting a new home center be sure not to give out any personal information. The builder's sales agent has been trained very carefully to extract any information from you they can. For example they may ask just a couple of quick questions like, where you from? asking for your first name and reading your tag number is enough information for them to find your address and phone number so they can start sending unwanted materials and or irritable phone calls.
This article does not apply to any particular Builder. The above information has been gathered over many years of practicing Real Estate in this area including when I was a builder's salesperson (yes, I was a salesperson for a builder). I was a licensed REALTOR at the time and did abide by the REALTORS Code of Ethics at all times.
If you have any questions regardless if you have already purchased a home or you are currently looking for a new home, please contact us at your convenience. All information will be held in the strictest of confidence.
I have over 30 years in the Housing Industry and 15 years working as a Realtor/Broker. Please call if you would like to be represented by a Knowledgeable Professional Real Estate Broker.
Anthony Kulp Associate Broker/REALTOR
Anthony@Beachtobayrec.com or 302-228-0993
Brokered by Bay Coast Realty,
18977 Munchy Branch rd
Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971