Frequently Asked Questions

What is “Exclusive Buyer Representation?”

In the recent past, potential home buyers worked with “agents” who would help them find their dream homes, not realizing that these agents were, in fact, working for the seller of the property, not the buyer. When home buyers began to realize this fact, they demanded to have agents who would represent them. An exclusive buyer representative is an agent who works strictly with potential home buyers.

 

So, are you telling me that the real estate agent that I found on the internet is actually working against me?

Not at all. An agent can help you find properties that might have the characteristics you are looking for in a home. But he is expected to follow local and federal codes and Real Estate License Laws, which require that a real estate agent meet the needs of the seller first and foremost, or risk losing his license.  This is why buyers often don’t learn of problems with a home until after the closing papers have been signed.

 

If this is how the market is, why should I even bother using exclusive buyer representation? Why not go the market alone

Because finding a home is one of the biggest decisions a person can make, and today’s real estate market is aimed at bringing sellers a profit, not selling to the right buyer. At Elika Associates, we have extensive resources and expertise to help you choose the perfect home for your lifestyle and financial situation. We don‘t sell the homes, which means we can give you an objective appraisal of each buying opportunity.

Unlike other real estate agents, Elika Associates represents you, the buyer. We negotiate a fair price based on YOUR terms, not that of the seller.

 

How are we paid?

Elika Associates works on commission, just as other real estate professionals. Our fee is paid upon closing, and we are paid by the seller; you pay nothing extra for our services since the fee is deducted directly from the proceeds of the sale.

If you work on commission, wouldn’t a more expensive home make you more money?

Of course. But you don’t want the most expensive home. You want the home that is best suited to you. We may make less on commission from your home purchase, but the positive feedback we get and the number of referrals that you offer more than makes up for any financial loss.

How do I secure the services of an Elika buyer’s representative?

By filling out a contact form. We will get in touch with you as soon as possible. After we have communicated, you will be presented with a buyer’s agency agreement, which will make Elika accountable only to you. This guarantees that you will receive full consideration in negotiations; you avoid overpaying for your home and your agent receives half of the regular commission from the final sales, instead of the entire commission going home with the seller’s agent.

 

Does Elika Associates only represent buyers of pre-owned or listed homes?

No. Our main goal is to get you into your dream home, and we realize that sometimes that may mean dealing with the original owner, or even a builder. Our vast real estate connections allow us to work with designers, builders and realtors alike.

 

Why Choose a Buyers Agent in New York City?

It is important that the agent you choose works for you. Working with a trusted expert and buyers advocate helps you achieve your dream of home ownership without unpleasant surprises. Elika is the only Exclusive Buyers Agent in Manhattan eligible for membership in the National Association of Exclusive Buyer Agents.

Buyers Agency

= Undivided Loyalty – Confidentiality – Full Disclosure

The Benefits

  1. We will provide unbiased expert knowledge and services saving you time & money.
  2. We will connect you with reputable attorneys, mortgage lenders, architects, etc.
  3. We will sort through all of the properties and provide you with only the best options.
  4. We will preview properties so that you don’t have to.
  5. We will negotiate on your behalf to get the best possible price. We will help manage the purchase application process.
  6. We will research and conduct a Comparable Market Analysis on the property, market and the area to make sure that you do not overpay.
  7. We will provide you with post-closing services assisting with your move and more.

BE WARY OF DUAL AGENCY – Department of New York State:

U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development 2010

The latest HUD Settlement Cost Booklet recommends the use of an Exclusive Buyer’s Agent. – If you want someone to represent only your interests, consider hiring an exclusive buyer’s agent who will be working for you.

The Past

In the realm of real estate, there have always been buyers agents, but most buyers were never made aware of this. When they wanted to buy a home, buyers went to a real estate agent for help in finding the best home for them, not knowing that a real estate agent is legally bound to represent the seller. This fact created quite a bit of confusion and led to a general distrust between agents and buyers.

The FTC eventually pressured the real estate industry to provide consumers with a written disclosure showing who they represented during the buying/selling process. In the 1990s, this pressure spread to most states. In 1993, the National Association of Realtors finally admitted the importance of the buyer agency and forced real estate agents to finally be honest about their actual roles.

Roles Defined

There are four types of real estate agencies, each with a definite distinction:

  1. Traditional Sellers Agency: Agents working for a seller’s company signs an agreement with sellers to try to get them the highest price. Many companies also serve buyers, but not as clients but customers.
  2. Dual Agency: This Company attempts to work on both sides of the fence, both as a representative for buyers and sellers. If one agent is working as a buyers agent and another as a seller’s agent, this can create a large conflict of interest.
  3. Buyers Agency: A company whose only interest is maintaining the services of the customer by trying to get the lowest price and best terms available for customers.
  4. Single Agency: They represent both buyers and sellers, as long as two agents don’t work on opposite sides of the same sale.

Avoid a Conflict of Interest

Whether consumers choose a dual agent or a buyer’s agent (also called an exclusive buyer’s agent) comes down to the importance, they place on the business relationship. If they do not mind sharing attention with the seller, they will be fine with a dual agency. But those who prefer one on one attention from their agent will want to choose a buyer’s agent. The thing to remember is that dual agents rarely introduce themselves as such, leaving consumers to determine for themselves just where an agency stands. This usually means reading the fine print on the buyer agency agreement or checking the paper for listings placed by the agency; an agency with a lot of real estate listings represent sellers as well as buyers. If they have not properly shared that information with their customers, it is best to walk away.

A conflict of interest is easy to avoid, as long as consumers see it coming. A home buyer who wants to buy a home that is listed with their buyer agent’s company will be faced with a conflict of interest. For the real estate agency, this representation of both buyer and seller is referred to as an in-house sale. In this position, the agency receives a double commission on the sale if it proceeds. While this is beneficial to the agent and his company, it is rarely fair to the buyer. Most wise buyers are aware of the implications of working with a dual agency and as a result, choose to work with an exclusive buyer’s agent. Such reputable sources as Business Week, Money Magazine, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine and U.S. News and World Report also support the use of a buyer’s agent over a dual agent.

 

How to Choose a Buyers Agent?

Can you afford not to have an exclusive buyers agent representing you?

The right buyer agent will help you find a great New York home quickly while limiting your costs and making the buying process much easier. However, considering the substantial financial preparation that you’ll need to undertake when buying a home, you should carefully choose an experienced buyer’s agent who will help you find the right properties and negotiate the best possible price. You’ll need a buyer’s agent who is:

Committed to your best interests

For some agents, the sale is more important than the client’s satisfaction. Our buyer agents only handle buyers and have a strong incentive to find client-appropriate properties. As an exclusive buyers agent, Elika provides without limitation, fiduciary duties to the buyer that include undivided loyalty, confidentiality, and full disclosure.

Full-Time Professional

You need a full-time buyers agent with experience and education. Our agents have numerous certifications and undergo regular training to stay informed of the latest changes in New York real estate. They work full-time to find unbiased information about the best properties in the city.

Able To Find And Compare Properties

The best agents understand the New York property market and know how to match properties to their clients. Elika Associates agents select desirable properties of interest and never waste time on substandard apartments that won’t meet their clients’ expectations.

Able To Determine True Value

Our agents know how to determine the real value of a home, even when it has not been staged properly. We can see through misleading copy and give you real information about the investment potential of any home. Elika Associates agents will also preview potential properties, substantially cutting down on the time that it takes you to find the perfect home or investment.

A Skilled Negotiator

The selling price of a home is largely determined through a negotiation process. In New York, sellers have experienced agents who know how to negotiate–every buyer needs the same resource. Our agents optimize your overall value by helping you decide on a starting price and by negotiating intelligently and firmly for the best possible gain.

Thorough, Transparent And Capable

Throughout the home buying process, you will want a fast, reliable point of contact. Elika Associates buyer agents are responsive and comprehensive. They give you accurate information that you need to make important decisions about your new home. Our agents have dedicated client representatives, and when you work with Elika, you will feel confident and informed every step of the way.
 

What are the advantages of an Exclusive Buyers Agent?

Elika agents offer serious benefits by giving you a structured, informative view of each property. We focus on delivering an assessment of actual real estate value. As we gather information about various properties, we will cut through marketing copy, talented home staging and other sales techniques that often lead to a bad deal.

We also make sure that we are not wasting your time by presenting substandard properties that do not fit with your plans. As our brokerage firm works exclusively with buyers, we ask our clients detailed information about their goals and lifestyles. We use this information to suggest options for each buyer.

In addition, an exclusive buyer agent will

  1. Help you spot misleading information in a property listing
  2. Identify overpriced properties and discourage impulse buying
  3. Professionally negotiate on your behalf to cut property prices
  4. Speed up the closing process, board applications, and other frequent delays

At Elika, our goal is to give our clients a new real estate buying experience. Every part of this experience offers improvements and advantages that would never be possible when buying a home through a more traditional agency.

Taking Stress Out of Real Estate

Inexperienced buyers often make embarrassing, costly mistakes, especially when buying New York City real estate. An experienced buyer’s agent saves you money by giving you the information that you need to make informed decisions before submitting any offers.

Elika’s agents also work to save you time and to make the buying process a much less stressful experience. We will make offer recommendations, handle tough negotiations and prevent high-pressure sales agents from leading you into a bad deal. We draw on decades of combined experience to make sure that you have a real understanding of each property and the New York housing market as a whole.

Buyers are often confused or frustrated by certain aspects of real estate. We give you easy-to-understand property valuations and handle many aspects of the buying process internally, saving you time and money. You will make better buying decisions, as you’ll have all the information that you need to be laid out clearly, but you’ll also spend less time making those decisions.

TESTIMONIALS

Mr. Elika has proved to be a consummate professional and shown a true and deep understanding of the Manhattan property market.

Richard Weinberg

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