Getting The Most From Your Buyers Agent

Engaging the services of an experienced Buyers Agent can definitely save you time and money. But how can you ensure the buyers agent you’ve chosen, is going to do the best job for you?

Here are a few questions you should ask before committing to them:

  1. What are your qualifications? The very minimum is a restricted buyers agent real estate licence. However the company must hold a full real estate licence to be legally entitled to offer these services.
  2. What is your experience in property? Have you worked in the industry before as a real estate agent? This experience is essential to equip the buyers agent with the knowledge and negotiation skills to secure the best deal for you.
  3. How many times have you successfully bought and sold property for yourself? Knowing your buyers agent is as passionate about investing in property as yourself will give you the peace of mind you have made the right choice.

Now that you’ve chosen the right agent, what’s next? It is obviously beneficial if you know what type of property you are looking for or at least what you are trying to achieve if buying an investment property. Before we begin the property search there is a process that needs to be undertaken:

  1. Confirmation of loan pre-approval. Knowing your borrowing capacity is the first thing you need to find out. Our search cannot commence until we have evidence of your pre-approval. Good properties don’t stay on the market for long so we need to be ready to place an offer quickly.
  2. What you can afford. This is the starting point from which all decisions will be made. If you’re after a 3 bedroom freestanding home in Bondi but only have $800k to spend, we need to adjust your expectations. If you’re looking to buy an investment property in Sydney for less than $500k then we immediately know which areas we need to be targeting.
  3. What name or structure will you be buying the property in? Do you plan to buy in your own name or a SMSF? If you’re planning to buy multiple properties then your accountant may suggest setting up a family trust to ensure maximum tax benefits and protection of your assets. Getting this advice upfront is crucial.
  4. Your tax position. This is so important! Your tax position and ability to claim deductions on an investment property will affect your net rental yield. It’s best to be clear on where you stand before we start the search. If you don’t have an accountant who is experienced with property investors consider finding one.
  5. Your strategy – yield vs. growth (or a combination of both). In capital cities it’s difficult to find a property that will give you a 5% yield plus high growth. Higher yields can often be found in regional areas but at a cost to growth, whilst capital cities can provide growth but lower rental yields. Don’t just pluck numbers out of the air and hope your Buyers Agent can find a property that fits. Your expectations should be realistic. Let us know what your goals are and we will devise a strategy to suit.
  6. Level of maintenance you are happy to manage. A house requires upkeep to things like roofs, gardens and fencing, all of which you need to keep on top of. Apartments have no such direct on-going maintenance needs but you do pay strata levies for general building upkeep. Decide which level of hands-on contact you want and we can go from there.
  7. Where you want to buy & other general preferences. Even though an investment property purchase should be all about the numbers, buyers can’t help but bring personal preference into the mix. Buying an investment property in your own neighborhood is not always the best option for you. Being able to discuss your concerns and reasons for wanting this may give us an insight into some other areas that you may also like but will provide you the returns you desire. The more we know about your likes and dislikes, the easier it will be to find the right property for you.

This is just a small part of the level of detail we go to when formulating a strategy for our clients. It may seem like an exhaustive process, however our level of experience and knowledge of the market makes the process that much easier. If you’d like to find out how we’re different to other buyer’s agents, feel free to give Innovative Property Advocates a call on 0411 522 233.