Do I need a Realtor with new construction?
YES YOU DO!
To Do List
- Hire a Realtor - This is a must. Your Realtor is working for YOU. Home builders may only give you incentive packages if you agree to their financing, or insurance, or title work. Your Realtor, however, can make sure that you are aware of the rates and that the offers are competitive and align with your needs. Your Realtor knows the standards. By bringing in your own Realtor and advocate, you are asking the builder to be on their "best behavior". The builder does not want a bad reputation and will want the potential to create a good relationship with your Realtor, who will hopefully bring additional buyers in the future.
- Do not sign ANYTHING until every detail is worked out - The builder may try to capitalize on your emotions when buying a new home. Once you have become attached to this new home, they may try to get you to write up a contract quickly so you do not lose it. You absolutely must know what is in the contract, understand it and agree with all of the listed terms. No matter what the builder tells you... IF IT IS NOT IN WRITING, IT WILL NOT HAPPEN.
- Research the builder - Your Realtor should be an expert on the homes in your area and this includes the builders and their reputations. You want to work with a builder who will listen to your concerns and be responsive to your needs.
- Ask the builder how much the model home is as you see it - Keep in mind that the model usually contains many upgrades and special features. You will want to understand the differences between the base model and the upgraded models. There are various levels for most selections and the prices are widely variable.
- Consider resale homes in the same community - Even if you did not think about it, you may want to consider resale homes within the community. There is also the possibility of inventory and/or spec homes. Depending upon your needs and flexibility, these are options worth looking into.
- Get a copy of the blueprints of your home, along with floor plans and surveys including room sizes - This will help you in the future if you want to make changes or sell. Some builders may not want to provide them, but your Realtor can assist with these requests.
- As your home is being built, check in - We recommend visiting once per week. If you are proactive you can catch small mistakes before they become big mistakes. Some developers limit access to the site. Your Realtor can help with that.
- Be strong at your walk-throughs - Your walk-throughs will be spread out during construction at the end of various building phases. It is important to be nice but firm in what your expectations are. Having an experienced set of eyes at these walk-throughs, someone that knows the lingo, may be invaluable.
- Finally, include your Realtor on all communication - Site agents are notorious for excluding your Realtor from email chains and communications. Make sure that you pass all info along as there may be inconsistencies that need to be addressed and expectations that need to be met.