The Ribbon is Free
A neighbor recently asked, “Do we really need to use a Realtor when purchasing a home? We can find houses online and look for ourselves.”
In most states, the agent who has a house listed (the Listing Agent) works for the Seller. That means they have a fiduciary responsibility to the Seller – not the Buyer.
So in a purchase, why would you possibly want to use the agent who is legally bound to get the best deal for someone else? In addition, the use of the services of a Realtor is FREE TO THE BUYER.
Anyone can show you houses. It’s what happens after you’ve identified the property that the expertise of your Realtor is so important. The question reminded me of a story my mother told many times while I was growing up:
A woman sees a magnificent hat in the window of a millinery shop. She goes in and exclaims over its beauty and inquires of the cost. When the designer tells her the price, she says indignantly, “That’s outrageous! It’s only a ribbon!” The milliner pulls the hat apart and hands it to the incensed customer. “Madam,” he said, “the ribbon is free.”
It’s the experience that makes the services of a professional real estate agent invaluable in your home search. Do not mislead yourself into thinking “the ribbon” is all there is to the process.