If you are in the market to purchase a luxury home, we know you have very specific wants and needs when it comes to your purchase. Buyers like you can be picky and discerning, you should expect the same from your real estate agent.
Current market conditions and uncertainty in the economy create concerns for all buyers. That being said, low interest rates are not particularly impactful to luxury purchases as luxury home buyers pay cash or have the capital to afford a higher monthly payment.
Luxury home buyers need guidance beyond that of a conventional purchase.
Here are some questions to ask an agent before you hire them for your next luxury home purchase.
1. What type of experience do you have in the luxury home market?
A buyer should find a real estate agent well versed in the luxury space. Working with just any agent can be problematic as a luxury purchase requires a great deal of knowledge regarding the community that the buyer is purchasing in.
An agent also needs to know the latest information for coming soon and off-market properties, as well as what’s currently available. High-end properties are often shown by appointment only so having prior knowledge of specific properties is crucial. Oftentimes, distinguished properties have experienced listing agents that prefer to work with other similar agents at the seller’s request.
2. Do you know any properties that are “off-market” or “pocket listings”?
Luxury properties can be hard to locate for lots of reasons. They typically do not appear on the multiple listing service (MLS). They are also not openly advertised with many luxury properties being sold by word-of-mouth.
Most luxury home listings are found through a real estate agent’s personal connections. Therefore, as a buyer, it is important to work with a qualified full-time agent who knows the market, works in the market, and possibly even lives in the market which would add to their ability to provide insights on the area.
3. Will you try to sell a home solely based on imagery?
Luxury home buyers can be quite busy and have challenges with finding time to tour a home. I do not recommend ever buying a home off pictures, brochures and video collateral. Experienced agents know that most luxury homes can be compromised or misrepresented with just imagery.
Find an agent who will go beyond the photos with you.
4. Is this home priced correctly?
Your agent should have an answer including how the customized amenities of the home affect the price. It’s important to know if the property is a one of a kind and/or desired by others. Some luxury buyers are price conscious while others could care less on price because they are so focused on their actual needs. The bottom line is that the agent needs to ensure that the home is properly priced and has a good resale value.
5. Are there any future plans for this community?
Properties and communities change. Some examples of this would be new adjacent commercial developments, roadway expansions or other less than favorable changes. Not all changes are negatives, plans for adding enhanced security, modifying a clubhouse or building tennis courts would be important selling or buying points for your clients. Obviously, some changes could be beneficial but others could interfere with the home’s privacy or resale value, which is another reason to find an agent who is knowledgeable about the community.
6. How well do you negotiate?
Your agent should be savvy, sophisticated, and capable to save you money on the purchase or make you money on the sale. Experienced luxury real estate agents know how to negotiate a favorable price in a professional manner.