Horror Stories Of Buyers Not Using An Agent



Buying a home and not using an agent leads to problems and horror stories

Not Using An Agent Can Lead To Major Problems When Buying A Home



Buying a home in Cleveland is a complex transaction and involves a lot of money and risk. There is even more risk and frustration when someone buys a home and no real estate agents are involved. This post will show real life examples of problems that can occur when someone buys a home without using an agent and will hopefully help buyers understand why using one is so important.

To begin, we are not going to be negative towards those selling a home on their own. I understand that some sellers decide to sell without an agent for a variety of reasons, and that is certainly their right. However, I do feel strongly that a home buyer is doing themselves a huge disservice by working directly with a FSBO ( For Sale By Owner – those selling without an agent ) and have seen horror stories to back this up.

Here are real life examples that I have personally seen come up when a buyer decided to act alone when buying a home here in Cleveland and negotiate directly with the seller, without using an agent:

1.     One buyer found out, after it was too late, that the home they bought was not in the school district they wanted. The home was located on one of few streets in that particular suburb that did not fall into the main school district. The buyer’s children ended up having to change schools as a result. A local agent would have brought this issue to the buyer’s attention and saved a lot of unnecessary stress.

2.     Shortly after moving in, a buyer encountered serious roof problems. It turns out there were pre-existing issues that were not disclosed by the sellers. In fact, the sellers never filled out and gave the buyers the state mandated Residential Property Disclosure Form. The buyers had to hire an attorney and spend thousands of dollars taking the seller to court.

3.     The buyers knew up front that the roof of a home they were buying was nearing the end of it’s life. After closing and moving in to their new home, the buyers got an unpleasant surprise. They found out that the local association governing their neighborhood dictated that all roofs needed to be a certain type, one that cost 3-4 times as much as a standard roof. Knowing this up front may have changed their approach during negotiations.

4.     Buyers who relocated from out of state bought a home in an area they were not familiar with. After moving in, they found out that a commercial building was going to be built nearby, visible from their new home and likely to increase nearby traffic. A local agent would have been able to notify the buyers of this pending construction project, something the sellers didn’t disclose to the buyers.

5.     Buyers overpaid by tens of thousands of dollars. A direct quote said to me “yeah, we probably overpaid, but we really liked the home.” It is very difficult to remove yourself emotionally and make wise business decisions when you represent yourself.

There are plenty of things that you can do by yourself, but buying a home should not be one of them. If negotiating on a home is not something you do on a daily basis, why would you think you can do it better than an agent who does this for a living, especially given all the risks involved?

Keep in mind that the odds of someone selling by owner are very low, so in most cases, they will honor an agent working on your behalf.

With that being said, some sellers may discourage you from having your own agent. They will tell you that the home will cost more if you do and encourage you to represent yourself, but this is simply posturing. In fact, this is what happened in example #1 above and it didn’t exactly turn out so well, at least for the buyer. You need to look out for your best interests, because the seller certainly won’t.

Based on the examples given above, buying a home is a complex transaction and comes with risk. Buying without an agent increases your risk and puts you at a huge disadvantage, so do yourself a favor and hire a knowledgeable real estate agent, or you may end up on this list some day.


About The Authors

The above information pertaining to Cleveland Real Estate News was provided by The Schuman Team, Amy and Dan, of Howard Hanna.  They can be reached at 216-346-3235 or via email, danschuman@howardhanna or amyschuman@howardhanna.

We service the following Cleveland area suburbs: Bainbridge, Bay Village, Beachwood, Bentleyville, Chagrin Falls, Cleveland Heights, Gates Mills, Highland Heights, Hunting Valley, Lakewood, Lyndhurst, Mayfield Heights, Mayfield Village, Moreland Hills, Oakwood Village, Orange, Pepper Pike, Shaker Heights, Solon, South Euclid, University Heights, Westlake, Woodmere.

Horror Stories Of Buyers Not Using An Agent  is the property of The Schuman Team and may not be duplicated or used without their written consent. ©November,2010

There are no comments yet. Be the first and leave a response!

Leave a Reply

Wanting to leave an <em>phasis on your comment?

CommentLuv badge

Trackback URL http://www.clevelandhousingnews.com/2010/11/horror-stories-of-buyers-not-using-an-agent/trackback/