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Buying a New Home from a Home Builder

February 12, 2013

How do you actually make an offer and buy a new home?

There are three main way this is typically done:

  1. You work with your own real estate agent who helps you find the right home, writes the offer and represents you on the transaction. (Most common)
  2. You work with the builder's community sales agent or listing agent and have them write your offer. (Less common)
  3. You actually buy the new home directly from the builder with no real estate agent involvement. (Rare)

When should you consider having the community sales agent or the seller's listing agent write your offer?

If ALL of the following are true, you could consider writing up an offer with an affiliate of the builder:

  1. You are certain that you've found the right home or community
  2. You have experience in real estate
  3. You are saving money or achieving some other advantage by buying without being represented
  4. You are comfortable negotiating
  5. You know you are getting a good deal based on your own research, not information provided by the builder or sales agent
  6. You have contacts in real estate for things like financing and inspections and you don't need help making sure your bases are covered
  7. The associate writing up your offer has told you POINT BLANK who they represent. (If you're not sure, or you're told they represent you, something is wrong)
  8. The associate has told you that they represent the builder and you're OK with that.
  9. You have a lawyer that can review contract issues if any come up

When should you have your own real estate agent representing you?

If ANY of the following are true, you should have your own agent representing you (not an affiliate of the builder/seller):

  1. You'd like objective advice and assistance in finding the right property.
  2. You'd like help negotiating price, closing costs, upgrades or other terms.
  3. You're not sure who the sales associate you met on-site represents, or even worse, they told you they represent you but haven't showed you anything except homes by the builder they are affiliated with.
  4. You want to see homes from many communities and areas.
  5. You plan on doing more real estate deals in the future and want to have a relationship with a go-to real estate professional.

Can you save money buying directly from the builder?

Buying a home "directly" from the builder could mean a couple things:

  1. Buying direct could mean writing an offer and buying a home with the assistance of the builder's listing agent or a sales associate at the builder's model home or community sales office. Buying with assistance from someone appointed by the seller can get rather awkward because of the conflicts of interest it brings up. You might be able to save money because the builder (seller) might be saving money but it largely depends on on how you negotiate the specifics of the deal.
  2. Buying direct could mean that you truly reach a purchase and sale agreement directly with the builder, without any real estate agent involvement. This is very uncommon. Builders almost always have an agent representing them in the sale of their homes (that's how listings get on the MLS for example). You might be able to save money if you find a builder willing to sell without real estate agent involvement but it largely depends on how you negotiate the deal and how your handle the the contact and transaction closing details.

How do you contact a home builder?

Some builders will have you contact their listing agent for the home or community you're interested in. Other builders have someone in-house that could be contacted with sales related questions.

How do you contact a builder's listing agent?

Directly under the photo for each new home on landcast.com we display the listing brokerage name and the MLS number. We don't have the listing broker's contact info on our site but you can often find it by using a search engine to find the broker's website and then on their site, search for the MLS number to find the listing agent's contact info.

How do you directly contact someone in-house at the home builder?

We'd recommend searching the web for the home builder by name and try to find their website and contact info. If that doesn't work, email us at support@landcast.com and we'll look it up for you.

More Questions?

Contact a Team Member