1. Work with the listing agent. Although this is legal, I don’t see how the listing agent – whose first obligation and their legal one is due to the seller – can represent two parties in the same transaction. How can the listing agent get the most money for the seller while getting you, the buyer, the best deal?
2. Spend all afternoon at the open house. If you love the house, ask a million questions and stay there all day, you just showed your hand. It’s now nearly impossible for your agent to negotiate on your behalf. You like the house, now go call your agent to set up a private appointment.
3. Contact the seller directly to tell them how badly you want the house. I recently had a buyer Google the seller who happens to be a published author. It’s bad etiquette and you’re not going to getting any points with the listing agent.
4. Speaking of the listing agent: Don’t call him/her. If you don’t have an agent, get one. Your agent knows how to ask the right questions. We also know how to ask questions to learn about you, revealing your position.
5. Listen to your friends. Sorry, but it’s the truth. Most people buy one, maybe two houses in their lifetime. Friends are not exactly pros when it comes to tell you how to buy a house.