With the housing market becoming increasing challenging and unpredictable in nature, there are many reasons for anyone house-hunting to consider why to use a buying agent in 2021.
Whether it is relocating to a new area, struggling to find the perfect family home or do not have the time to diligently search for a property, there are a number of compelling reasons to learn more about how buying agents work and the services they offer.
Here we highlight the benefits of using a professional property buying agent and how to find the right person to assist with a search.
What is a buying agent service?
In the UK, a residential property buying agent is a highly experienced property experts who solely works for property purchasers.
In contrast, estate agents in the UK only looks after a sellers best interests to get the most amount of money from a sale – a frequently overlooked point by many house hunters.
Highly regarded buying agency firms offer access to their experts who typically possess 10 years plus experience in the property industry.
By providing practical guidance and perspective about the housing market, sharing their local knowledge and property expertise, they ensures their client makes a well-informed purchasing decision and wise investment.
Why is it worth getting a buying agent?
For a number of reasons it is worth a buyer getting a buying agent to act on their behalf.
First and foremost, using a buying service will help save considerable time.
This is done both at the planning stage and the actual house search stage.
At the planning stage, using their knowledge of the market and buying process, buying experts help manage expectations by advising on what is actually achievable relative to a purchasers’ wish-list and stated needs.
Then, with a clear search brief in hand, time is further saved by filtering properties, previewing suitable options to propose a shortlist containing only the very best residential property for a client to view.
Local property market knowledge
Buying in the country market presents all sorts of different challenges to buying in a city, such as London for example, and vice versa.
Local knowledge helps to paint an accurate picture on what a house really offers in terms of surrounding facilities and lifestyle, way beyond an estate agent brochure.
For example, is the property on a route that is busy during rush hour, or on a noisy flight path, or is there expected to be development nearby that will change the local aesthetic?
All points to be considered that an untrained eye, or someone who doesn’t know the local area might well miss.
In the instance that you’re moving to a new area or a place, you don’t know very well using a buying service not only can fast-track a property search, but also help avoid making expensive mistakes.
Off market property
Due to their established network of local contacts, it is also usually the case that buying agents will gain access to off market opportunities and pre-market access to homes not yet available to buy on the open market.
Estate agent priority access
It isn’t uncommon for an estate agent to contact known and trusted buying agents first regarding new properties to the market and often prior to a property being listed online.
Whilst some estate agents such as Savills and Knight Frank have their own buying service, independent buying agents pose no commercial threat to estate agents, so they comfortable sharing private off-market information.
Additionally, buyers who have enlisted the services of a buying agency has further demonstrated their seriousness and commitment to finding a buying a property.
Access to unique property
When buyers are seeking a unique property, whether that be in the country or a city like London, or indeed a house that must fit very specific criteria working a buying expert can make a huge difference.
From working farms and smallholdings to equestrian properties there is a range of more rural homes that require specialist guidance and assistance and will often not be sold openly meaning having someone ‘in the know’ onside can prove beneficial.
Should a buyer be seeking a very specific property perhaps a country house period property for renovation or a barn for conversion, or even with special requirements such as the need for an annexe – a property finder expert will often be able to source the ideal property, where an unrepresented buyer may struggle to do so without the same advantage.
Assurance and impartial advice
Whether a buyer is relocating or simply wants assurance that they’re making a good purchase, buying agents will share their local geographic knowledge and property expertise to ensure their client makes a well informed decision.
From casting a professional eye over the property, dissecting surveyors reports, overcoming unfair vendor expectations a an experienced buying expert can provide numerous advantages.
They will provide practical guidance meaning there is no bias and it might be that they advise their clients not to proceed to a purchase.
Negotiation on purchase price
Keeping up to date with the latest market movements and and purchase price data allows a buying agent to have an informed approach on a property’s true price.
When a property is seriously considered by a client a buying agent will conduct a further due diligence process.
They will collect comparable evidence of recently sold properties to ascertain the true value of a property, looking beyond just the asking price.
Based on their findings and discussions with the selling estate agent, to understand the motives behind the sale, they can competently advise their client on the most appropriate strategy for negotiation.
It is often the case that a buying agent will be able to secure a property at a discount to the asking price, saving their client money and on many occasions self funding their services.
As sometimes can be the case in the UK property market, if a property reaches best and final offers or a sealed bid scenario, a buying agent’s client might be deemed favourable due to being professionally represented.
A selling agent will be aware that reputable buying agencies will have completed due diligence and that the buyer has retained a professional experts to secure a property for them.
Garrington clients have previously won in sealed bid situations due to their representation, being chosen over other buyers who had offered an increased figure.
How to find good buying agents
When it comes to finding a good buying agent there are several points to consider.
Property search experience
They will also have the necessary experience needed to provide bespoke advice to their clients through the buying process and offer tailored advice befitting of needs and market conditions.
Prior to engaging any buying agency it is worth taking time to ensure that the company has adhered to its statutory obligations by registering with various professional bodies.
All buying agencies have to subscribed to a property redress scheme such as The Property Ombudsman.
Recommendations from past customers of a buying agent
Local to your search it is often the case that selling agents will be aware of buying agents who they might have worked with.
Be aware that some search agencies are simply a buying arm or an estate agency and others might receive a referral fee for recommending services.
What is the difference between a selling agent and a buying agent?
In the UK properties are usually sold with the assistance of a selling agent who will advertise a property, attend viewings, negotiate with potential buyers and oversee a transaction through to completion.
A selling agent acts on the behalf of the seller, the seller is their client.
In contrast, a buying agent acts solely on the behalf of the buyer and will act in their interests alone.
It is often deemed that the involvement of a buying agent can provide balance by representing the buyer.
Selling agents work well with buying agents, recognising the merit in a buyer who has committed to the purchase by retaining the services of a professional property finder.
How Garrington can help as your buying agent
Garrington are one of the longest established property buying firms in the UK.
Wherever a buyer is looking and whatever type of property they’re searching for a Garrington buying agent will be able to assist with sourcing and acquiring the finest property.
The Garrington team have experience in finding and securing main residences, second homes, holiday property, renovation projects and investments as well as specific types of residences such as equestrian properties, smallholdings, farms and properties which will serve as both a home and a business.
We’d be delighted to discuss your plans in greater detail and share information on the range of services we offer to private clients.