I've been a real estate agent for several years and nothing is more important than experience when it comes to buying or selling real estate. Real estate agents can go through all of the rigmarole of continuing education and learning things through classes, but nothing beats actual experience. And one of the biggest things I can say to any condominium buyer is to have their own dedicated agent when buying real estate of any kind, including condominiums, or maybe I should say, especially condominiums.
Condo buildings throughout San Diego may have a specified real estate agent that they use to list all their properties for maybe to buy properties. But, that agent might not work for you. You are legally allowed to have any real estate agent that is licensed in the state in which you're buying help you or facilitate the transaction. You want someone that's working on your side, not just to sell a particular condominium in a certain building. Many condo buildings or condo associations may have assigned their own real estate brokerage or agents to help facilitate transactions within that building or complex. While this is fine, it's more of a convenience rather than an actual service. Most homebuyers, even those that have purchased the property before, may not understand the importance of having your own dedicated buyers agent.
Let me put in these terms: if you're listing a property for sale and you hire the services of a real estate agent to list and market the property, that agent's primary goal is to get the home sold. The agent also wants to make sure that they have the buyer as well so they facilitate the entire transaction for both the buyer and the seller. In doing so, that agent receives the full commission. You can see why listing agent will also want to be the buyers agent as well. But, does that mean they're working for the buyer or the seller? In this dual agency type of situation, the listing agent must first work for the seller rather than the buyer. The seller is the one that commissioned the agent to begin with and the buyer has come along and is pretty much going along with whatever the listing agent says, including price, terms, and any other details that might come along with the listing. Unless the buyer is very proficient in understanding real estate contracts, it's important to have their own buyers agent to protect them, both with the price and the terms on the contract. Many buyers just don't understand all of the nuances and details that come with the purchase and sale contract so having someone on your side protecting you, not just someone is trying to sell a property, is invaluable.
The next time you're buying any type of property in San Diego make sure you hire your own buyer's agent. It costs you nothing as the buyer's agent receives half the commission of whichever home you choose. But, you have the confidence and the guarantee that that agent is working only for you, and not the homeowner.