Does a buyer pay a real estate agent commission?
Buyers do not pay the real estate agent. The seller takes on the burden of that fee. One thing you have to remember: the real estate agent works for who pays them. Even if the listing agent doesn't sell you the house and you get your own real estate agent. They are both still working for the bucks paid by the seller.
You should be sure to protect yourself by getting a mortgage from a reputable bank, using an independent appraiser and utilizing an independent closing agent. I would also get a home inspection before buying a house. If you pay the fees for the loan, the appraisal, the inspection, those people are working for you!
No, a buyer does not pay the real estate fees. This is a common misconception among many people shopping for real estate. When a Realtor helps a seller position their home in the marketplace, the seller has already taken into consideration their goals and motivation, and all the real estate fees. The real estate fees come out of the seller's proceeds.
Many people believe that using the listing agent as their agent also, (a situation known in the industry as " dual agency" meaning the listing agent now also represents the buyer's best interests) will save them money. This is not necessarily the case as the sellers have already agreed to pay a certain percentage of their fees to the buyer's agent as wel, so why not use your own Realtor to do the search work for you, facilitate the inspections and so forth and, most importantly, represent only your best interests as the buyer?
I can only speak for Texas real estate agents. The buyer's agent makes the money from the person selling the home. I have not worked with any buyers agents that have ever charged any money to the buyer. The commission comes from the seller. The only money that the buyer may have to put up front before closing on the home is earnest money, an option fee (gives you the ability to back out if the inspection is bad or you change your mind. Usually between 7 and 14 days after the contract is signed), inspection fee, appraisal fee (if an appraisal has been ordered). Some lenders charge an application fee however you can find some that will not.
A buyer does not pay a commission!
Real Estate sales commissions are paid by the person or business contracting the agent to list the property for sale. This commission is spelled out and set forth in a "listing agreement", and is generally specified as a percentage of the final selling price, with part going to the actual selling agent, and part going to the listing agent.
Buyers should always work with the best local agent they can find, because they can reap the benefits of the expertise of their agent while shopping for a home. A good agent will have a professional network of associated business partners such as real estate attorney, home inspectors, insurance agents, title agents, appraisers, and mortgage loan officers.
There is no fee generally associated with working with an agent to purchase a home, however, once you select an agent, you should recognize the fact that they are basically an unpaid consultant for you, unitl you actually buy a home. This is when they will be paid for the long hours of effort they will expend on your behalf.
Once you select an agent to work with, you should remain loyal to them, unless they are not serving your needs, or addressing your concerns. If you go to visit homes without your agent, always let the representative at the property know who you are working with as your buyers agent.
Real estate agents are a valuable resource for home buyers and can help guide you through your purchase experience, so seek out the best in your area by asking around town.