New Homes in St George Utah
Well, not so easy when digging deeper. If you went to school and attended Economics class, you will realize that Supply and Demand in the market place, tends to show that other factors and competition will keep prices down or in check OR that when Demand goes up, prices can always shoot up as well. Well, demand for new construction with little supply has done just that in the St George area- helped prices go up, a steady 6% or better on new construction. Inventory levels in the resale market have dipped to increasingly low levels, as well, and this has also influenced these higher prices. But the demand is still coming on strong with no end in site. St George and the surrounding areas are increasingly found in the top places to retire and for small business, and the weather attracts large masses of people from the north on a consistent predictable basis!
Resale Market in St George Staying Strong (H3)
The unsteadiness of the political and larger economic conditions has kept buyers from over-reacting buying to beat any rush. But with interest rates being low and projected and shown to be rising, there may be little time to utilize the best buying opportunities to make sure you are keeping new construction in check by assessing any opportunities in the resale market. New construction sometimes lacks views or mature or back yard landscaping or block walls or fencing in place already. Also it might lack the variety that resales have, as in the track home stigma new homes can have. Also, more lush or mature landscaping, closer to towns resources and often built out around established golf courses are things that resales have over a lot of the new construction. There is also a tendency for builders seeking the fast buck to buy cheaper land that has soils issues with it and this has been an ongoing factor.
As such, now, more than ever, a Realtor, ALREADY BUILT INTO THE SYSTEM can become irreplaceable and very valuable to helping you optimize your opportunities. I have felt my buyers leaning upon me with greater intensity and in the new construction arena for advice and help that has saved them lots of time and management of decision making power. This has been to include saving them from problems associated with this area.
Realtor Expense Already Built In that Seller Pays at Closing In All Instances – Offset by Benefits (H3)
So, we've explained how opportunities are offset by other expenses, but ones, once understood, can be leveraged and not become liabilities. This is true when it comes to how market place factors have determined the value of a Realtor to minimize exploitation yes, BUT also in this newer environment, to help you enhance or leverage yourself greater in finding the right location and priced property with built in negotiations training held in your Realtor.
It is already built in. It is a calculated expense thrown into every transaction with the presence of a Realtor. It is typically a 5-6% commission that is charged TO THE SELLER every time! Because the resales compete vivaciously with new homes, builders and developers view it sideways. They think, “if shoppers only knew about us”, instead of gawking at all those older homes. And so they 'bite the bullet' and realize that putting it on the MLS AND their website, as bringing them greater returns in building more homes and making more money.
You Pay the Same on New Construction with or without a Realtor, Prices are Public and Fixed (H4)
THIS MEANS THEY HAVE TO OPENLY PUBLICIZE PRICES THAT ARE THE SAME WITH OR WITHOUT A REALTOR. Realtors, also showing resales, are welcomed and shown and enticed to bring their buyers in to them as part of the listings to be shown. The way they entice Realtors is automatically done on the backside of each listing that is on the MLS, to let them know their is a 2-3% commission in it for them. They then agree to quote the people coming in on their own, unrepresented, the same price as they would if they were represented.
In fact, their prices are "set in stone" ahead of time BOTH on the MLS and on their own website- it is the SAME PRICE WITH OR WITHOUT you Realtor involved. So, you can go observe this for yourself, enough to become comfortable, that all-around it is going to be to your best benefit to use and make sure your hard working Realtor is put to work in representing you and in directing you through and to the best areas and combinations existing on the market to include the new construction and new homes. I as your agent, Brian Habel, am very capable and know the best new homes available at the best price and locations.
Being All-In for your Realtor as I'm All-In for You
On the new homes, there is an established pattern for maintaining clear lines regarding representation. You share in a responsibility to your agent and the New Home Builder to communicate to that builder up front that you have a Realtor helping and representing you. You do this either by having your Realtor go with you or having your Realtor call you in that you are coming, or at very least mentioning your Realtor up front when you do go in. It helps that builder know how to compensate their inside real estate agents as sometimes they make less on those situations as well as to decipher how much they are making on each job. Remember, they are going to be paying your Realtors commission at closing, not you. I, your Realtor, am free to you on all purchases, the seller has always paid in every situation.
Now that I've told you this, it allows you to also NOT be milking your agent to show you all the resales WHILE expecting them to NOT be fairly compensated or put forward at and on the new homes or new builds. This is why I think it is just fair to inform you enough to want you to come over and be "all-in", that when it is time for you to be "all-in" without fooling anyone, then just be "all-in" when you feel like you have a Realtor that knows not just the tedious detail of representation, but the WHAT of it is that makes their pay "worth their pay".
Put My Personal Expertise and Experience to Work for You! (H3)
Put my personal expertise and over 13 years of experience to work for you! I will be advising and perking up to the better opportunities available to you ALONG with you. You can trust that I'm NOT just making a sale, but giving you all the pros and cons as a way to pursue your best interests and to tell you what I think, as needed, to be able to evaluate it for yourself. At the end of the day, the one we settle on, I will have for you reasons WHY this is a good opportunity, why it has my stamp of approval and highlighting all the reasons as to location and the price point being in line where you stand to build good equity. You will know and hear about convenience to community resources. You will also be able to avoid problems associated with: challenging soils conditions, how renting impacts your area, if lenders will even be able to give loans and avoiding all sorts of pitfalls. These and many other factors to include having great relationships with other agents and being able to negotiate better on your behalf by being trained in negotiations, will make me your best choice in Realtor.
Having some representation to explore the market and your options can be powerful enough on its own, let alone the unique skill, experience and knowledge set I bring, making me a hands down a clear asset to have representing your interests on new construction, resales or other new homes. Please don't hesitate to call and ask about which new home opportunities might be the best fit for your situation and current market conditions in your price point. At the end of the day, it's all about guaranteeing your financial dreams on one of the biggest purchases of your life. AND if I can win a friend along the way, I am friends with most all of my clients and keep in touch regularly after the sale is accomplished. This should tell you a lot that I'm not just here to focus on details but the value derived in our relationship. Thanks for listening! Call me now, you can see my phone number by clicking on the phone in the top right all the time, or reach out by email, the envelope up there if you wish.
BASIC COMMISSION EDUCATION
Usually it is a good axiom to realize that when and if there is one realtor involved, another one exists to represent the buyer’s interests at no extra cost. How can this be you say? The commission is either split between two agents or one gets it all. In other words, a system is in place where the listing realtor exacts enough commission to share that commission with the buyer’s representative. In most cases, the first agent to the buyer wins their agency. But the “problem” is when the buyer initiates contact with the listing agent. If that agent should be the one to write up the contract on his/her own listing, the buyer is being represented in a “limited” way, when he/she could have had their own representation for absolutely no cost. Most people do not know that the listing agent on a home “doubles” his commission by being the agent to “bring” the buyer. You, the buyer pays the same either way. So, why not, for goodness sake use the system for what it is designed to provide to you, the buyer - your own representation.
- New Construction that exists with the builder having agent representation- which means the buyer will have automatic representation of their choice with no additional cost passed onto the Buyer, whatsoever- These are homes that will be on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and can be accessed through any realtor.
- Because we specialize in New Homes, we will have the occasional New Construction Home(s) that we have added to the new home search on our website search here; that gives you more than what the MLS would provide you.
- New Construction that exists without realtor representation- These homes are mostly accessed by knowing who the builder is and calling him. Often the builder will not have advertised them as of yet. Some do advertise in the paper.
- Brian Habel will work with you, the Buyer, on commission when it comes to securing a new home that is not listed on the MLS or with our exclusive builders. The typical charge you can expect, that a realtor makes is 3% on a transaction. Let’s specify, On the builders “selling it on their own” homes, we charge 2% if you should use our services (This is explained below under Advantages to Using a Good Realtor on For Sale by Builder, #4 & #5). Really it is up to you - take it or leave it. We do not care that much, nor do we feel “put out” in the slightest should you genuinely pursue new construction that is on the MLS (realtor sold homes) and then go out and purchase something without our assistance on a new construction that is builder sold “selling it on their own”. We view competition in the market place as healthy and we are just glad at the opportunity of working with you because we are confident that you will find something with us.
- Give you an edge over the next realtor on the number of new construction homes we ally with (new homes that we have pre-arrangements with at a cost of 3% to them instead of the listing cost to them of 6%). You get more of a choice than with another realtor who only has access to the MLS.
- Show you homes that are on the MLS - this really is the major source.
- Allow you the choice to pursue the new construction homes that are not listed or in exclusive relationship with us. Many people will pursue them using us.
Why you need an agent when buying/building a new home
- Your cost? Absolutely nothing! Compensation to your agent by the builder will have no impact on the cost of your home. The builder has already included these fees in his marketing costs.
- Your agent can save you a lot of money by making sure you are getting what is rightfully yours in value and quality.
- The information your agent provides can assist you in looking at all aspects of buying or building a new home, including future resale value.
- YOU are represented. Your agent’s knowledge and experience provides strength and leverage on your behalf. From lot selection to final walk-through, your best interests are of foremost concern to your agent.
- Your agent will make sure no details are missed. He will be certain you get the best home warranty, and help answer questions like “What’s covered?” and “For how long?” He will assist you in getting copies of appropriate information, such as the soils report.
- Whether it be at walk-through to see that the house is finished the way you arranged OR at walk-through with subsequent putting of a contract on a "pretty much" finished new home, your agent will notice things based upon what can usually be worked into a contract offering [or punch list] up front, that the buyer may often miss by being off, enamored with “other” things. Often it is the little attention to detail that can be missed and cost the customer grief in the future.
DRAW BACKS TO NOT USING A GOOD REALTOR ON FOR SALE BY BUILDER
So, as we’ve talked, we have emphasized representation on realtor sold homes through the MLS and the value of representation on new homes. On the homes that builders are trying to sell on their own, there are some drawbacks that can come without your realtor representing you. We will list some below here:
- Because of the contractor not paying his bills, supply companies can have construction liens placed on that house leaving you holding the bill after you move into your new house. Believe it!
- The builders know that when a buyer’s agent is involved, they are not nearly as likely to exact or expect unrealistic amounts of earnest money deposits that they will make non-refundable. Thereby, you are “held over” when completions are not going as you desire, “coerced” to “stay in the deal”, otherwise you will lose that substantial amount of earnest money.
- This “holding you over a barrel” is not needed when you have set-up the contract properly to represent a reasonable agreement where BOTH parties are protected from unreasonable demands put by either side. You are much more likely to have the contractor “over the barrel”.
- You have no recourse with loosely worded contracts and contract dates. If it is not written and tailored using additional approved and tailored clauses, your situation will often be far worse than any realtor’s commission.
- Often the builder will have more advantage without the buyers realtor involved in “exploiting the situation” by exacting greater costs for upgrades OR in charging you extra for upgrades that could have been “couched” (caught by a perceptive realtor) as already included, “right”.
ADVANTAGES OF USING A GOOD REALTOR ON FOR SALE BY BUILDER
Working with these Builders, with your realtor at your side, is easy. Here is how we will serve you if you decide to use us on those other new construction projects:
- Most builders realize in trying to sell it themselves that they are missing out on a large portion of buyers- buyers working through agents, coming in from out of town (or in town), usually, who are not afraid to buy “it”, if they like what they see. Most builders would relate the pain they have felt over this in the past, when it has been difficult for them to get the “bigger bucks” out, fast enough. Realize that most builders need the money out of their last project in order to fund their new one. They realize more than you do, that the more buyers walking through that house, the better…the better the chance of pulling the price they want and moving it, so they can get the money out and get on to the next one. Ever heard of “time is money”? This is the smart builder’s axiom because the builder, who builds twice the number of homes, generally makes twice the income. More insight? Responsible sub’s are sub’s that are kept working full time because the largest overhead cost to a builder is unreliable sub’s or turn-over of workers, impacting the reliability and proficiency of work. So you see, they have to keep the “ship sailing” if they are smart.
- This is why most contractors, if approached by a realtor, ask: “will you absorb my 3% commission in the asking price as you have it if I bring a buyer who may just buy your house?” They will say, "yes." After all, if they would have had to list it on the MLS with realtor-s- (two realtors becoming involved), they would have had to pay 6%! 3%, by now, is mild.
- We will do the calling and approaching for you AND represent you as your realtor, with all the added benefits and protections that gives you that we have tried to briefly touch on above.
- Best of all—our fee for doing so is ONLY 2%, not 3%.
- In other words, the builder pays the realtor at closing 3% and then we turn around and refund you back the 1%.
- How’s that for an attractive option? But, you get stronger negotiation presence - that alone, could justify a 2% commission, not to mention the benefits and protection. Don’t forget, while your busy life is pressing on, after you put your new house under contract, those contract dates creep up and I would say most people “space” them (if they have even protected themselves with them). But not if you have a realtor taking care of business.
- Other items are fringe benefits. For example, right now, an out of town client has arranged for us to do other things, namely, coordinate to let the inspector in, the “Merry Maids” cleaning service, to pay them with clients check when they are done and to secure keys. Sound like service. And what about reminding you about your walk-through date, to make sure things are done according as agreed. What are you going to do if or now that they aren’t? We know this “stuff”. Put yourselves in the hands of professionals who will be with and guide your experience.
Let’s recap a bit. Knowing such things as the standard deposit, the standard price on upgrades and selections and the standard “timing” issues involving the builder “finishing” the terms of the contract, all affect the buyer’s ability to keep control of the project. After all you’re paying the bill. Most often it is reasonable to think about how, both the builder and the buyer are better represented with the services of good realtor. You will find that most builders, who are already not working with a realtor, are eager to accept a half-the-commission arrangement, so as to not miss out on moving the property faster at the price they want.
REASONS FOR BUYING NEW VS BUYING OLD
- New home values typically rise fairly quickly and maintain better increases.
- New homes require little up-dating and need less routine maintenance than established homes.
- Most new homes include state-of-the-art appliances as standard, or as a possible upgrade.
- Many new homes include high-tech features, such as high speed internet access, alarm systems, and multiple telephone lines.
- New homes are usually very energy efficient, due to high-grade insulation, double-paned or thermal windows, heating and cooling systems with high SEER ratings, and even advanced air filtration systems.
- New homes are typically safer, due to more stringent building codes.
- Roof venting, finger-jointed studs and post tension cable foundations are being used in many new homes. These features will be found in very few older, pre-owned homes.
- Current, durable products, such as tile, stucco, stamped concrete and truss beams, add value and durability to new home construction.
- When financing your new home, you usually have the opportunity to include options and upgrades in your purchase price.
- During the construction process, you can personalize your home, choosing colors and textures that appeal to you.
Just to clarify, new home vs. resale: I am not discouraging either. I specialize in selling both types of homes. My job is to point out that few realtors are equipped to handle new home investigations or to guide the buyer in that process. We are specialized to offer this advantage. We also have access to a myriad of forms from planning a construction project to helping keep the builder accountable to you during the process. It is our plan to post, at least the title of some of these on our website in the near future.
NEW HOUSING DEVELOPMENTS THAT HAVE ONE LISTING AGENCY
Be aware that some new developments have one real estate company in there coordinating sales more exclusively. Different rules may apply.
Some new developments require that your realtor (and you) sign in at the “front desk”, in order for the realtor involved to receive a commission. In all of these cases, the prices on homes are the same with or without their realtor. It is real easy for a buyer that is looking into new projects, to start talking with the show home agent to inquire about the project homes, without verbalizing up front that he/she has an agent. Usually the buyer can insist and get what he/she wants, but in many cases, not mentioning the representation up front, means that buyer usually will forfeit the ability to use their own agent on that particular project. Conversely, there is NEVER a downside case scenario for the buyer stating that he/she has his/her own agent.
The worst thing that would happen is for that development representative to respond back by saying, "I’m sorry, we don’t entertain other realtors here". You need to know that it is very rare for them to not entertain realtors. In those cases, you merely reply, ‘OK, then on this project I will pursue without my realtor’. Done. But why relinquish the realtor on other projects, by saying nothing up front, when it never costs you anything AND it just may “save your life”.
FURTHER INSIGHT INTO PROJECT DEVELOPMENT REPRESENTATION
This is how those few situations work. The buyer is clueless. The project agent has “precedence” and is cutting off representation, only to assume all of it under the umbrella of having a standard package or way of selling things. Therefore, the question is asked from this “standard” mentality, ‘Where could the seller be exploited, misinformed, or taken advantage of, when that is the way it is done with all who come here?’ While that can be the case, here is the problem. A few details are often not scrutinized by the buyer that can and do greatly pertain to their possibly being taken advantage of. I will mention one example without getting into the details. A buyer that used us, did “sign us in” at the beginning of the project. They were catered to by the project development realtor, the same way they would have been without representation. Once the correspondence started and the “dining” experience took place, between the project realtor and the buyers, the buyers forgot to consult with their realtor- me. Towards the end of the beginning, after having a deposit on the property and about to commit to the build job, they contacted me. We then informed them about what some of the fine print can often involve and began to ask questions that dealt with base pricing options pursuant to upgrades and further options, like the ability they had to raise the price on them “down stream”. They could see that they had not been fully informed OR did not know all their options. You see, while one development does one thing, the other does another. With our representation (which costs you absolutely nothing) we can help in little ways that can save a lot. In this example, they decided against building.
NEW HOME BUYING TIPS
- Choose the area within the community that best suits your needs, considering school districts, commute time and convenience features.
- Choose a neighborhood that offers what your family wants, such as community parks, a community pool, and walking trails.
- Choose the home design that best suits your family needs, considering specific uses such as a playroom, hobby room, home office. Also, consider a floor plan with flexibility, to avoid later remodeling costs.
- The best way to streamline the process is to go with an established builder who has other projects in town that you can go look at. Occasionally, that builder will have a home with a popular floor plan that you can tour . This is ideal- to be able to see what you can anticipate as the finished project.
- Be aware that duplicating what a builder has already done, can minimize your expenses. Basically, if the builder knows what to anticipate and is not forced to make costly changes “mid-stream”, the bottom line will be better for you, the buyer.
- Communication with the builder, up front, is very important. We can help you choose someone with whom you feel comfortable, that has a good reputation, and someone with whom you have open lines of communication.
- Discuss quality issues with your builder, such as foundation engineering, name brand components, and if there are many outstanding warranty issues with other homes built by this contractor.
- Be very clear about expectations: What do you expect from the builder? What does he expect from you? I know of know better system than the one we have with the forms that help you to get it in writing.
- Discuss all of the mortgage loan possibilities with your agent. He can direct you to the various available options.
NEW HOME WARRANTIES
The new home warranty is a very important consideration, and there are many important questions to ask regarding the warranty. Your agent can give you valuable direction in looking at all of the warranty aspects.
- Does the builder provide a new home warranty?
- What type of warranty is it and for what length of time?
- You will need to know what items are covered, and for how long. Is there a deductible? If there is, how much for each incidence?
- If there is a dispute, who pays for attorney’s fees?
- If the builder provides the only warranty, himself, what happens if he leaves town or goes out of business? Are you left without recourse?
- Ask the builder to provide you with a copy of the actual policy for your review.
- What do other homeowners have to say about the builder and the warranty provided?
- Is there a separate warranty provided for new appliances, furnace, and/or air conditioning? Who provides the paperwork for these?
As you can see, there is a lot to consider when looking at home warranties. Your agent can be your best defense in walking you through this process. You really can’t afford to be without your own real estate agent.
We hope this information has been helpful for your consideration toward a new homes in St George Utah!
Related Information: Buying New Construction in an earlier phase.