Have you heard of Hugh Jackman’s property story? Well, like any other celebrity who wanted to simply purchase a property for the best deal possible, he once used the services of a buyers agent.
In 2015, Hugh Jackman and his wife bought a lovely Sydney property overlooking Bondi Beach for $5.9 million. And notably, in the same year, the couple actually sold off their apartment in Melbourne for $740,000—of course, with a total gain of $500,000—over the 18-year period they owned the property.
Sure, they could’ve bought whatever property they fancied with whatever price tag attached to it. But they didn’t. The couple wanted to make sure that they received their money’s worth with the best possible deals available in the property market. Indeed, the assistance a buyers agent brings to the table is undeniably invaluable.
The new development in North Bondi with breathtaking views of the beach. Photo: McGrath
And that’s where ‘go-to buyers agents to the stars’ (with whose names you may be familiar with) like Deborah West and Janne Sutcliffe come into the picture.
West actually sheds light on another reason why celebrities ask for buyers agents’ help when she shared this thought: ‘High profile clients come to us to escape the circus that is in the Sydney property market. They want confidentiality, discretion and privacy. We facilitate that away from the media glare and wagging tongues of Sydney’s social set.’
Although West and Sutcliffe won’t reveal (understandably!) the names of their A-lister clients, both have been champions for celebrities on the look-out for great property deals in the Australia market—perhaps celebrities like Hugh Jackman, Cate Blanchett and Nicole Kidman!
Now, you may be wondering, ‘What does all this have to do with me?’
Well, read on, my fellow property investor.
I can just imagine you in your property journey. You’ve spent hours toiling away with all of the data and figures. And yet, you feel like you’re nowhere close to finding an investment property than you were when you started.
You know exactly what you want but you don’t know how to get it. You just can’t find the property that suits your needs.
Well, I know someone who knows the same feeling. Neil Jenman is a consumer advocate who’s used a buyers agent on multiple occasions. However, at first, he was unsure of using a buyers agent. In fact, in an article published on the Australian Financial Review, he explained this hesitation.
According to Neil’s estimate, only 2.5% of Australian buyers use agents. This low figure suggests that the other 97.5% don’t trust them or simply aren’t aware of them. Either way, that 97.5% miss out. He says that he’s used buyers agents for two of his property purchases. And thanks to his agent, he’s saved a total of $250,000 that he can put towards other investments. (Isn’t that great? I mean, that is awesome for him.)
Perhaps you have this question in mind: ‘Could a buyers agent get similar results for me?’ And to that I say, ‘Why not?’
A good buyers agent will take the time to find out what you need and will locate the ideal property for you. However, you don’t want to work with just any agent. Nope. If you’re planning to become a long-term investor, you need to work with the best of the best.
A great buyers agent hits the nail on the head every time and will help you to build a strong portfolio—and, of course, help you find that ideal property you’ve been searching for!
So, if you’ve made it to reading this far, then read on. Get ready to happily discover more advantages of using a buyers agent in your own journey to finding your ideal property.
Table of Contents
- What is a Buyers Agent? ...And do I really need to have one?
- What Type of Buyers Agent Do I Need?
- How Much Does a Buyer’s Agent Cost?
- The 5 Key Roles of a Buyer's Agent
- In the End, Is Getting a Buyer’s Agent Help Worth It?
- THE TOP 5 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT BUYER’S AGENTS
What is a Buyers Agent? ...And do I really need to have one?
Imagine this scenario: When one of the regular contributors at a property online forum picked up the phone, he had no idea what he was about to walk into. For the next 10 minutes, a real estate agent basically berated him for not doing what the agent thought he should do. This buyer had expressed an interest in an apartment that the agent was selling. And during that call, the agent constantly tried to pressure him. (Ridiculous, right?)
The agent told him that two other people made higher offers.
‘If you just got the ball rolling on your offer faster than they did, you could land the property. All you need to do is get started,’ she said.
On top of that, the agent said that there was no need to see that pesky strata report. But the potential buyer chose to wait and see what happened. He wasn’t prepared to raise his offer, and he certainly wasn’t going to buy without doing his due diligence.
The agent called again a couple of days later. And this time, the agent gave him an earful for wasting her time!
Again, she tried to pressure the potential buyer into agreeing to the purchase now. He’d miss out on a bargain if he didn’t, she pressed on.
Don’t worry! Before this story even takes a turn for the worse, let me end it—thankfully, the potential buyer chose to withdraw his offer.
Even if this was a made up story, I’m sure that when you imagined such a scenario, glaring warning alarms went off in your head. Yes, these pressure tactics are a sure-fire sign that an agent is trying to hide something. And they’re tactics that you may have come across during your own buying journey.
If only you have somebody in your corner who’d fight for your interests, instead of those of the seller on whatever property you’re looking to buy. Well, that is exactly what a buyers agent does.
In simple terms, a buyers agent is a champion for your what’s best for you and for your property goals.
And yes, if you want to exhaust one of the best means to acquire a property for the best price—that won’t deplete you or your funds but actually will be good for you and your future finances—, you’ll need a buyers agent.
So, what roles does a buyers agent exactly play in helping you find the right property?
What Type of Buyers Agent Do I Need?
Now, to understand the roles a buyers agent plays, it is key to understand what the two main types of buyers agents are out there. (Determining which is which can help you know which one you need for your property journey.)
It all comes down to the specific challenges that each type of property presents—more precisely, commercial and residential. Commercial properties offer different advantages to residential ones. And both also offer their own unique challenges to an investor.
Let’s meet Gino...
When real estate investing expert Gino Barbaro invested in a 1,765 square meter commercial building in November 2016, he thought he had hit the jackpot. Later on, he realised otherwise and shared this thought: ‘At the time, I thought it was an excellent investment and it would add a significant amount of passive income to my portfolio. Unfortunately, this passive income did not transpire.’
What he learnt was that he made a ton of mistakes while trying to source the ideal commercial property. He noted that he had no idea what the market looked for when it came to his property. He just assumed that such an attractive commercial space would attract tenants.
Thinking about it in retrospect, Gino said: ‘I had no idea what metrics to look for, or how to use the metrics to rank the market. What was job growth, population growth, tenant laws, unemployment, et cetera et cetera et cetera.’
In other words, he didn’t know enough about the asset type and he also committed the cardinal investment sin: He fell in love with the property.
So, the end result for Gino was that he had an expensive failure on his hands. And that’s the exact situation that you want to avoid. And this type of situation is where a buyers agent may be able to help—specifically, seeking advice from a commercial buyers agent.
Now, if you’re looking for a residential property, a buyers agent dealing with that market is your best choice. However, if you’re looking for a property for commercial use, then a commercial buyers agent is what you need.
Let’s briefly look at the difference of these two types of buyers agents.
The Residential Buyer’s Agent
Residential buyer’s agents or sometimes called a ‘buyers advocate’ have their strong A-game in looking for properties that are designed for people to live in. They provide personalised service and care to you, the buyer, who is their priority when negotiating deals with sellers and tackling the legal issues that come with buying a property.
If for example, you’re looking to buy a house in the suburbs or city, perhaps with the purpose of renting it out for passive income or for you and your family to move in, then a residential buyer’s agent can help you get the very best deal possible in the market.
Residential buyer’s agents examine the local property market, making sure your goals and strategies are met as they advise you on the best ways to deal with transactions, reports, disagreements and counter offers.
As the buyer, you just need to be open about your goals, short-term and long-term, and the current status of your finances. (Because they’ll need to know if you can practically afford the house or unit you’re thinking of purchasing in the first place.)
So, in a nutshell, if you want to invest or purchase a house or a unit, the buyer’s agent you need is a residential buyer’s agent or buyer's advocate.
The Commercial Buyer’s Agent
On the other hand, a commercial buyer’s agent examines more than just the local property market. They also understand the economy of a location and the types of services in demand. This information then provides them with insight into the types of businesses that could serve the location. And that, in turn, helps them to highlight properties that have the potential to turn a profit.
Simply put, commercial buyer’s agents research properties based on a different set of criteria to that of residential buyer’s agents. Thus, you know that you’re getting a specialist when you work with a commercial buyer’s agent.
So now, if you’re looking to invest in commercial real estate, such as warehouses, office or retail spaces, or anything that operates a business, the best buyer’s agent you need on your team is a commercial buyer’s agent.
What It Ultimately Comes Down To: Market Knowledge
A commercial buyer’s agent chooses to specialise in a market for your benefit. And that means they provide more accurate advice within that niche when compared to more generic agents.
In fact, trying to use a residential agent to buy a commercial property is like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. It doesn’t fit because a residential agent doesn’t know about the specific challenges at play. Thus, they’ll draw on irrelevant experience when searching for a property.
Commercial investors usually have a smaller pool of potential tenants to choose from. Furthermore, they need to purchase a property based on the demands of the local area. For example, there’s no use buying an industrial property in a location that doesn’t have these types of business.
And, those are what differentiate residential buyer’s agents to commercial buyer’s agents.
As you continue to read through this article, I’ll share with you more details on the expertise buyer’s agents bring to the table with the help of some of Australia’s leading buyer’s agents. You know, with a good buyer’s agent, you may just avoid a repeat of Gino’s horror story.
....Now, I hear your hesitation on the cost of using a buyer’s agent. And that is a valid concern. Well, let me tell you more about that.
How Much Does a Buyer’s Agent Cost?
It’s true that is not an easy question to answer for several reasons.
First, the cost of an agent depends on the services you need them to provide. You may spend as little as $500 if you just want an agent to attend an auction for you. Or, you could pay thousands of dollars if you want a service that involves researching and locating properties.
Second, agents differ in terms of the payment structures. Some work on fixed fees, whereas others work on a commission-based model or a mix of both. And each of these models has its pros and cons.
Okay, so let’s look at these models a little more in detail.
The Fixed Fee Model
With a fixed fee model, you pay a set amount of money for a specific service. The auction example I just mentioned works here. In this scenario, the agent charges a fixed fee of $500 to attend an auction on the buyer’s behalf.
Of course, the amount you pay rises depending on the level of service you require of the agent. You can expect to pay up to $15,000 if you want the agent to leverage their full talents in your service.
The Commission Model
Now, with this model, the agent will charge a percentage fee, typically based on the final property purchase price. That means that you don’t have to pay as much money for the agent upfront. However, you will need to account for the variances in payment that result from the purchase price of the property.
Most agents charge a fee ranging from 1% to 3%.
Okay, so let’s put in an example. Let’s assume you’ve bought a $500,000 property. In this scenario, you will pay anywhere between $5,000 and $15,000 for the buyer’s agent’s services. If we bump that up to a $1 million property—which isn’t rare in places like Sydney—those figures can double.
A Mix of Fixed Fee and Commission Model
Now, with this model, the agent may charge a fixed fee upfront for a ‘discovery session’ for example. Then after the property is purchased, he or she could charge a percentage of the transaction as agreed upon by both parties initially.
However, for this model to work well for both the client and the agent, there should be consistent transparency and an ongoing discussion between the parties. As with the other two models, all the apparent and potential costs, rates and fees must be laid out on the table for both parties to discuss.
In this mixed model, however, you have a more flexible payment plan with your buyer’s agent while getting the same quality service you’ve paid for.
Choose What’s Best For You
So, if perhaps, you are now deciding on getting a buyer’s agent, determining the payment structure you want to work with is the decision you need to make.
So here’s the rule of thumb: Choose what’s best for your situation.
If you want an agent to provide limited services, it’s usually best to look for those offering flat fees. However, you may prefer a commission model if you want the full service. This one is especially the case if one agent’s fixed fees end up higher than the commission you’d pay for another. Just keep in mind that, which of the above models works best depends on your needs as a buyer.
No matter which model you choose, you’re surely going to see that it’s worth using a buyer’s agent. (And I’m saying that based on my own experience.)
Now, keep reading and discover the roles great buyer’s agents play, which practically explains WHY buyer’s agents can help you find your ideal house or property.
The 5 Key Roles of a Buyer's Agent
Okay, let’s go back to this question: Are you searching for the right investment property but don’t know where to start? A buyer’s agent may hold the answer.
Meet the co-founder of Dashdot, Glenn McGrath (aka ‘Goose’). He was just 17 years old when he started his first company. Working in events management, he played a part in some of the world’s most recognisable events—from Burning Man to the London Olympics. Undeniably, he lived an exciting roller coaster life. However, it eventually took its toll.
Towards the end of his events management career, Goose found himself working 100-hour weeks. That’s a recipe for burnout and he was right at the end of his rope.
He needed to find something else fast, or he’d have inevitably burned out. Fortunately, Goose soon found out that property was the answer. Yet the shift wasn’t easy for him.
Every single person in his life seemed hell-bent on convincing him that becoming an investor wouldn’t work. They told him that it was too expensive, too risky, and too hard.
But he persevered.
Alongside his partner, Gabi, he threw himself into research mode. And over time, he came up with a formula for finding investment properties that perform amazingly.
Today, he works as a buyer’s agent to help people just like you find the ideal property. And he, along with some other agents, tell us exactly what a buyer’s agent does.
Role #1: Educate the Buyer
A buyer’s agent's first role is to educate you as a buyer. He or she helps you understand property market trends, intricacies of deals, and relevant data concerning your goals in your property journey. They can even help you formulate a strategic property plan specific for accumulating multiple properties in a set period.
As a buyer’s agent, Goose works alongside his partner, Gabi, to help property buyers like you. Together, they’ve created several systems that help investors buy high-performance properties. They recommend that all investors look for the Holy Trinity when it comes to property:
- High Growth
- High Yields
- Potential for Value-Adds
Notably, when I asked Goose in one of my interviews with him what he does on any typical day, he said that he focuses on education: ‘What that constitutes in a day, basically, is roughly 20–30% of the day I work with my partner, Gabi, to work out how we can help spread that message [about helping out everyday Australians build wealth through real estate] and how we can help educate people and provide really valuable stuff to people.’
Of course, like I mentioned, much of this education revolves around helping people to buy properties. However, Goose also focuses on helping his clients understand how the property market works. This move equips buyers (like you!) with the tools needed to find suitable properties for themselves.
‘My whole passion is about trying to change people’s lives and, for a large part, there’s a degree of education involved in that. So, we’ve put together what we call the high-performance property strategy, which is basically a triangle almost that kind of fits together. It has those three components: cash flow, growth and value-add strategies.
Now, the way I explain it to people is that from a cash flow perspective it’s not just about getting extra pocket money, it’s about increasing your serviceability and also making sure the property can pay for itself.’
Glenn ‘Goose’ McGrath
And that is a crucial aspect of the buyer’s agent experience. A good buyer’s agent does more than simply find properties. They help you develop a deeper knowledge of investing, thus empowering you to do more work on your own.
From educating the buyer, buyer’s agents can thus now help minimise their clients’ risk.
Let’s look at this important fact: Anybody who chooses to buy an investment property must accept that they’re taking on a risk. So, now the goal is to minimise that risk as much as possible so you stand the best chance of success.
And that’s precisely what Daniel Walsh aims to achieve in his work as a buyer’s agent.
As a very successful real estate buyer’s agent and founder of Your Property Your Wealth, Daniel puts importance in educating his clients and thus helping them limit their risk in their property journey. Armed with skill, education and experience as an investor himself, he works with his clients in building their portfolio with calculated strategy.
Indeed, if you don’t understand the situation in getting a property and just willy-nilly buy here and there, you might end up with a big problem in your hands. Using a buyer’s agent with the right knowledge and guidance, it makes it a lot easier for you to build your portfolio or purchase your next property with minimised risk.
‘When you’re looking to get into property investing, it’s very hard to find information and really know how to do it, especially interstate. Not many people know how to go interstate. So, seeking out somebody that knows and has done it before definitely limits your risk.
Whereas if you go in there by yourself, you’re spending $300,000–500,000 in a market, and you don’t want to mess that up. So, go to somebody that knows what they’re doing, learn from them, and they’ll teach you how to do that.’
Buyer’s agents like Daniel specialise in weighing properties up against the strategy that you have in place. They’ll help you to see where you can take some risks and where you may need to scale back—that’s exactly how they help minimise risk in your property journey.
Simply put, they can prevent you from wasting money on properties that don’t serve your portfolio!
As you can see, using the right buyer’s agent will help educate you. And you’ll receive the best of both worlds of coaching and mentoring.
This thought actually reminds me of Helen Tarrant, a commercial property speaker who values investing time in educating her clients.
In fact, she spends as much time teaching people about commercial properties as she does helping them to buy them.
Helen’s focus lies in helping people to accelerate portfolio growth with the right properties. That means they can get where they need to go—and even retire on passive income—with just two or three commercial properties, rather than buying 10 or more residential properties.
'In any given day, I help, coach and mentor my students to make sure they are following the right strategies to grow their portfolio—so to make sure they’ve got the foundation properties in there that allow them to buy the next property and the one after.’
A good buyer’s agent will draw from their own experience to help buyers avoid common pitfalls. They’ll also help buyers to better understand their own strategies and the types of property that fit their risk profile. In Helen’s case, this involves taking on an active mentorship role, where she works directly with her students to help them structure successful commercial property deals.
So, to summarise this first role of the buyer’s agent, just remember this important note: Education is the key to any investment strategy.
Role #2: Gather Information from the Buyer
Following on from that point, the education aspect of the experience isn’t just for the buyer. The buyer’s agent must also learn as much as they can about the buyer to find the best property for them.
Remember Goose? For him, learning as much about the buyer as possible allows him as an agent to figure out what buyers need to learn and the type of strategy that will suit them best.
As such, as a buyer, you can expect to undergo a fairly extensive information-gathering process.
A good buyer’s agent will ask you about every detail that you require in a potential property. If you’re buying the house to live in, they’ll ask about the number of bedrooms it needs and any special features you want. They’ll talk to you about the compromises you’re willing to make and discuss budgetary issues. If what you want isn’t possible in your budget, a good buyer’s agent will tell you honestly and come up with alternatives.
For an investor, this process goes a step deeper.
Now, the buyer’s agent wants to know about your strategy or if you don’t have one they will help you create it. They’ll talk to you about the local rental markets and what they mean for you as an investor. A good agent will also handle research for you, which means you quickly find properties that fit your goals and what the market needs.
‘People are at different stages, so I’m really passionate about trying to help people and answer their questions, even if it’s just to help give them some guidance.’
Glenn ‘Goose’ McGrath
In fact, Brian McNicol, the CEO of the buyer’s agency, aptly named ‘Commercial Property’, has always valued this role of the buyer’s agent. After collecting information from the buyer, he gathers market data that is relevant for that buyer’s goals and strategies.
Originally an investor in residential properties, Brian built a portfolio of 14 properties. However, he later made the switch to commercial due to the stability that tenants offered on long term leases. Now, he helps other investors make wise commercial purchases.
In one of my conversations with him, he summarised his duties as a commercial buyer’s agent who makes sure he acts on the information gathered for and from the buyer: ‘As the name suggests, I basically specialise in just finding commercial property for my [clients]. On a daily basis, I’m researching. If there’s a property I’m interested in, I’ll ask for the information memorandum (IM)..., get in contact with my clients and do a rough ‘feasy’, and where it’s appropriate, we make an offer and basically help the client follow through to a successful purchase of the property.’
Now, imagine this process multiplied over hundreds of properties and you get an idea of the scale of the work involved. You get the idea. A commercial buyer’s agent spends much of their time gathering information for clients. They take the client’s needs, examine the market based on them, and come back with opportunities.
‘Now that [my wife and I have] established quite a reasonable lifestyle, I now want to try and do the same thing for my clients and help them achieve the type of lifestyle that they desire.’
This research is key to the success of any investor or buyer like you. Without it, you may rush into an opportunity, only to find that it doesn’t suit your strategy.
Agents like Brian handle the heavy research load so that their clients can focus on the investing part or have more time to do other things they enjoy.
Now, it’s only after gathering all of the information needed that the agent will take on the next role—locating suitable properties for you!
Role #3: Locate Suitable Properties
Once buyer’s agents have the information that they need from you, they start searching for properties. Typically, an agent will present several properties to you at once, each with a report on its pros and cons.
Simon Loo, the founder of House Finder and a successful investor, is a buyer’s agent who is adamant in helping investors locate the best properties that are apt to their goals and needs. He brings top-notch education and investment experience to the table.
I remember when he shared with me his experience of purchasing his first property, he took a lot of time to do his research and found multiple properties to choose from.
He said: ‘It was actually off the back of a lot of research and a lot of build-up towards that first property—like most people when they’re about to buy their first property. So, it was back in late 2009. But even before then, I really spent every weekend checking out units in various suburbs around the place, just looking everywhere and getting my foot in the door of as many open houses as possible. I’d do all the research the week before, then find out which properties I’d go to and line them up on Saturday—just go bang, bang, bang, one after the other.’
With such passion as an investor himself, he now employs the same enthusiasm as a buyer’s agent when looking for properties for his clients.
‘I’m basically helping others achieve financial freedom as I’ve done myself and just sticking to those fundamentals. I find properties that are below market value; I find properties that have cash flow, and I also find properties that can add value—whether it’s a minor renovation or there could be a potential to develop that property down the track. … As a buyer’s agent, I like to mentor a lot of my clients—basically get them to a stage where they can buy properties themselves.’
In fact, part of Simon’s services as a buyer’s agent is to mentor his clients. He equips his clients with the right knowledge for developing a good eye for property.
The key to remember here is that buyer’s agents work in your best interests. That means that they’re not thinking about landing a commission from a seller while they work with you.
Now, if for instance, you are already an investor with residential properties who wants to transition to buying commercial properties, buyer’s agents are key to aiding you in that transition and locating suitable properties according to your direction.
And that’s where buyer’s agents like Chris Lang come in.
Chris is the CEO of both Property Edge Australia and Property Made Easy. Like many, he started his journey as a residential investor. And he learned first-hand just how hard it is to transition from that to commercial property.
When I talked with him, he mentioned a notable observation: ‘A lot of them are making the transition from residential to commercial. And the reason for that is commercial property provides you with a net return of somewhere between five and … seven [per cent return]...on your equity.’
‘The commercial property is basically a game. So, if you’re able to uncover the rules then you can begin to play. But true success only counts when you start to master those rules.’
Yes, a good buyer’s agent can help you to adjust your investing mindset. Most particularly, commercial buyer’s agents can help investors overcome some initial hurdles in making the transition from residential to commercial.
A buyer’s agent like Chris can help you ease into the commercial space through their work. That ensures you don’t make the same mistakes that others who try to transition alone will make. And along the way, of course, they’ll work in helping you locate suitable properties to invest in or purchase.
So, remember, a good buyer’s agent—whether residential or commercial—can help you locate suitable properties aligned with your goals and direction.
Role #4: Spot Patterns in the Market and Manufacture Custom Deals
Now, to explain this next role of a buyer’s agent, let’s go back to Simon Loo—particularly into what he does to spot patterns in the market.
And any good buyer’s agent should be able to spot patterns and trends in the market, especially when working with investors. And how Simon does that is through research and attention to detail.
He once shared with me a process he does when looking at the details in the property market: ‘There’s a lot of reasons why people need to sell properties urgently. So, that’s when people like me—for myself and as a buyer’s agent—I get exposed to a lot of these types of deals, and that’s where I come in. And, depending on the price, I do my own research based on the last three months of what’s sold in the same suburb in the surrounding streets that are of a three-bedroom, one-bathroom, one-garage nature. And if I could pick up the property for, say $310,000 or $320,000, [when it’s advertised for $350,000] then you know that you’re below market value. You’re probably getting a decent deal if there’s not too much issues with the house...You’ve just got to look at it as it is and what the comparables are.’
Indeed, capable buyer’s agents like Simon makes sure to look at the market trends and assess patterns. They evaluate them and see if potential properties you are eyeing to buy are positively geared, suitable for your portfolio, and aligned with your long-term investment goals.
‘If you’re really wanting to get to a point where you’re buying several properties—whether it’s within the next year or five years or 10 years—it’s something that you intrinsically need to have a bit of a passion for. Because whether you’re investing in shares or properties or whatever, there’s a lot of research that’s involved before you pull the trigger to buy whatever you’re going to buy.’
You have to remember: The property market isn’t static.
On a macro level, the property market has its ups and downs over time. When you boil down to the micro level, you will see that every suburb has its own localised market. Examining these markets helps you to identify patterns that you can leverage when buying. But it also takes a lot of time to gather that data.
Buyer’s agents like Simon Loo handle all of this work for you. That means they can provide guidance on a property’s potential performance, as well as its current one!
Now, after spotting patterns in the market relevant to you, a buyer’s agent then searches custom deals for you.
For buyer’s agents, creating custom deals for clients means finding manufactured equity deals for them. In fact, successful property investor and owner of Australian Property Scout Sam Gordon makes sure he accomplishes this role as a buyer’s agent: ‘I do what I call manufactured equity deals. So, duplexes, subdivisions, wholesale land and builds and stuff like that.’
In other words, Sam finds properties that suit a particular type of strategy. This move allows him to create customised deals with the strategy relevant to the buyer.
It may mean buying existing land where you can build duplexes or has subdivisions potential. Or, it could involve finding properties that have the potential to become something different with the right investor.
‘Property is a long term game, but if someone came to me with the right borrowing capacity and deposit level, I probably could retire them in five years. [For] a lot of my clients though, what I have for them is a 5-year game plan of accumulation. And it pretty well goes close enough to achieve what they want. They’ve just got to let the portfolio mature. And then probably throw in a few different little manufactured equity deals along the way as well.’
And of course, as part of their work when deals are presented on the table, a buyer’s agent can also handle negotiations on your behalf. They can talk to the seller for you to find the best price.
Or, they could attend auctions on your behalf, thus removing emotion out of the equation... which now brings me to share with you the last role of a buyer’s agent in this article: negotiating and purchasing the best deals.
Role #5: Negotiating and Purchasing the Best Deals
Bidding at Auctions
Sixty per cent of people—that’s how many respondents told the Real Estate Buyers Agents Association of Australia (REBAA) that overpaying at an auction is their biggest fear.
In fact, founder of Cate Bakos Property in Melbourne and successful buyer’s agent Cate Bakos pointed out that she’s worked with a ton of clients who have that very worry: ‘Some buyers are genuinely petrified of bidding in public, much like speaking in public, although adrenaline and a firm plan can usually help get them past this hurdle.’
It is undeniably true that auctions can stir up some pretty powerful emotions.
Unfortunately, many investors or property buyers walk into an auction with a plan, only to find themselves in a bidding war. They get fixated on a property that they feel like they need to have. And this situation leads to them overspending and putting themselves on the back foot.
‘We work for the buyer—whether the buyer is a home finder or an investor. It’s our task to help guide them through that maze, and that includes negotiating a property or bidding for them at auction. It also includes assistance in the searching and the shortlisting. So, there is a lot that it entails. But it’s basically being a guiding hand for a buyer who is out there trying to do it themselves, feeling like they could do with a bit of help.’
Many buyer’s agents offer an auction bidding service. That means that they learn from you what you want in a property. Most importantly, they go in knowing exactly what you can afford to spend. If an auction goes to the wire, a buyer’s agent takes an emotionless approach. Instead of bidding just a little more, they’ll pull the plug and stop you from overspending because they know your budget and goals.
Furthermore, good agents go into auctions with strategies that increase their chances of winning.
Looking at how buyer’s agents effectively handle auction bidding for the benefit of property investors like you and me, I am reminded of the fact that good buyer’s agents basically put the ball in the buyer’s court, so to speak.
Yes, letting emotions run amok (albeit unintentionally) not only in auction biddings but also in negotiating and searching for the best deals: It’s a scary thought, especially if you’re working on a tight budget. Losing control of your emotions could cost you tens of thousands of dollars. So, what can you do?
Again, a buyer’s agent can come to the rescue.
Negotiating and Searching for the Best Deals
David Glover is one of Australia’s most well-established buyer’s agents. As the owner of Bluegum Property, a buyer’s agency specialising in land and development for sale properties, he works primarily with developers. His goal is to help his clients find ideal sites for their projects with the best deals. And much like many buyer’s agents, David’s story starts when he decided to invest in property.
When David started his investing career, the concept of a ‘buyer’s agent’ didn’t really exist. Instead, buyers had to work with sales agents who had a vested interest in achieving the best result for sellers not the buyers themselves. And so, that means that he struggled to find suitable properties and the best deals available.
However, all that changed when David worked with a sales agent named Jeff. Instead of pressuring him into a deal, Jeff helped David to find the perfect property for his needs. Jeff took him to different properties to consider. Although he didn’t know it at the time, David had just discovered what a good buyer’s agent does: searching and negotiating for the best deals according to the client’s property needs.
In this case, the agent gathered information on the fly and used it to find the ideal property that had the best deal for the buyer.
Today’s buyer’s agents dive much deeper, as I mentioned earlier.
‘Always look for a deal. When an opportunity comes up, just talk and figure out a way forward, and it’s surprising.’
So, don’t forget: A great buyer’s agent aims to put the ball in the buyer’s court. They’ll help you to see when a seller wants too much for a property. Plus, they’ll negotiate on your behalf to lower that asking price. This case often means that you land a property for below its market value. (Cool, right?)
Having a buyer’s agent by your side means that sales agents can’t coerce you into paying more. You always have somebody looking out for you to ensure you don’t spend unwisely.
In a nutshell, a buyer’s agent is a champion on your court, handling bidding auctions—without any pesky, unnecessary emotion—and ensuring you’re not overpaying or missing out on opportunities relevant to your property journey.
In the End, Is Getting a Buyer’s Agent Help Worth It?
Are you convinced yet? Maybe, you are. But now you’re asking this question:
Is it worth investing in a buyer’s agent?
If you’re looking to buy a property, either for yourself or as an investor, or you’re building an investment portfolio, then my answer is a resounding ‘yes’! While the fees you’ll pay to work with a buyer’s agent may seem expensive, you need to consider the value they bring.
If you were selling your property, would you sell it yourself or hire a real estate agent? I would probably advise you to use a real estate agent. Using a buyer’s agent is no different.
While real estate agents help you get the buyers you need for the property you’re selling, buyer’s agents work for you in helping you search for and buy the ideal property according to your goals and needs.
To summarise, here are the big reasons why I believe it’s worth investing in getting a buyer’s agent:
Indeed, a great buyer’s agent can make all of the difference when you’re searching for a property!
Now, if you’re looking for a buyer’s agent, we at Property Investory can help you!
We’ll recommend the buyer’s agents suitable for your goals and needs. All you need to do is contact us by clicking on the button below. (As easy and convenient as that!)
Are you a first-time homebuyer?
Are you building your investment portfolio?
Or, are you a savvy, experienced investor in the commercial or residential space?
No matter which of these you are, your goals do matter. Let us help you with your property journey. We will do our best to connect you with the best buyer’s agents in the market!
Here Are Other Stories To Satisfy Your Curiosity
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- From Tragedy To Managing the Multimillion Investment Portfolio
- 5 Ways of Income Return in just One House From $3,000 Investment
- Building A Property Roman Empire Is Very Simple with Chris Gray
THE TOP 5 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT BUYER’S AGENTS
What is a buyer’s agent?
In simple terms, a buyer’s agent is a champion for your what’s best for you and your property goals. The key roles of a buyer’s agent are explained in great detail in the article, here they are in summary:
- Educating the buyer
- Gather information from the buyer
- Locate suitable properties
- Spot patterns in the market and manufacture custom deals
- Bidding at auctions, and negotiating and purchasing the best deals
Why do I need to use the services of a buyer’s agent?
Basically, if you want to exhaust one of the best means to acquire a property for the best price—that won’t deplete you or your funds but actually will be good for you and your future finances—, you’ll need a buyer’s agent.
What type of buyer’s agent do I need?
If you’re looking to buy a house in the suburbs or city, perhaps to rent it out for passive income or for you and your family to move in, then a residential buyer’s agent can help you get the very best deal possible in the market. Residential buyer’s agents examine the local property market, making sure your goals and strategies are met as they advise you on the best ways to deal with transactions, reports, disagreements and counteroffers. On the other hand, if you’re looking to invest in commercial real estate, such as warehouses, office or retail spaces, or anything that operates a business, the type of buyer’s agent you need on your team is a commercial buyer’s agent.
How much does it cost to hire a buyer’s agent?
First, the cost of an agent depends on the services you need them to provide. Second, agents differ in terms of the payment structures. Some work on fixed fees, whereas others work on a commission-based model or a mix of both. And each of these models has its pros and cons.
How do I find the best buyer’s agent I need for my property journey today?
If you’re looking for a buyer’s agent, we at Property Investory can help you! We’ll recommend the top buyer’s agents suitable for your goals and needs. All you need to do is contact us by clicking on this link. Let us help you with your property journey. We will do our best to connect you with the best buyer’s agents in the market!