Why Do I Need a Buyer’s Agent When I Use StreetEasy?
The island of Manhattan is the only place in the United States that does not have an MLS. For those unfamiliar, the MLS (multiple listing service) is an exclusive platform for realtors to post their listings and search for properties to send to their buyers. Since sites like StreetEasy, Zillow, and Trulia function as the de facto MLS for NYC, it begs the question:
“Why do I need a realtor to purchase a home when I have access to the same services they have?”
I’m of the philosophy that, whether good, bad or ugly, the more information one has at their disposal, the better decisions they will make. When realtors created this system to prevent access to listing information, they actually do their clients a disservice. In this economy, information is power. Despite thinking you know just as much as your real estate agent since you have access to the same resources, the truth is a full-time realtor delivers value in the hidden, inconspicuous ways you may not have thought of.
If your realtor is good at their job (who you work with matters), they cultivate cordial relationships with the local listing agents that provide client’s with quick access to necessary information and allow them access to properties that might not be granted to newbies.
A good agent will understand the tempestuous process and guide you accordingly. They will have a rolodex filled with inspectors, mortgage lenders, contractors, architects, and most importantly good, affordable attorneys. They know their market inside and out so they intuitively know what properties you’ll want to see the moment they hit the market. Since statistics show you will most likely purchase a coop, they will complete your board package for you. They make you work as minimally as possible so you have more time to do the things you love (or the things you gotta do). All in all, a good buyers agent understands the art of the deal.
The paradigm is shifting.
I believe moving forward, real estate agents will not deliver the bulk of their value by sending listings to their client’s, as was once the case. Buyer’s agents are free representation that can save you time, money, and most importantly your sanity.