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How Much Information Should You Give Away to Real Estate Agents When You’re Looking to Buy a Home

How Much Information Should You Give Away to Real Estate Agents When You're Looking to Buy a Home

Emotions can run high when buying a house, whether for your new home or an investment property, and it can be tempting to tell the agent everything you’re thinking in the house of finding the perfect property.  

The real estate agent is the working on behalf of the seller and it there to get the best (higher) price and a quick deal for their client. The buyer on the other hand is looking for the best (lower) price for them, which is why on some topics, discretion is key.  

When looking at properties with an agent, these are the details to keep to yourself until the right time.  

The Budget

As tempting as it may be, keep your top figure a secret. There may be times you want to share it to avoid being shown homes out of your budget, but the agent is aiming to have you pay a higher price and may throw you into a bidding war if they know you can go higher than your offer.   

What You Think the Property is Worth

If an agent asks you how much you think a property is worth, they are trying to gauge your budget and expectations around the market. Be sure to do your research and know what similar properties sold for in the same area, and also what prices similar properties are being advertised.  

Instead of answering the question, turn it back to them and see what they have to say. Their answer will tell a lot about how they see the market, and if your research has paid off.  

Your Timeframe

If you are working with a short timeframe, an agent will try and work that to close a quick deal. They may also drag out negotiations to shorten your timeframe even further, because when people are time pressured, they may agree to a deal outside of their original budget or expectation.  

How You Feel About the Property

Finding your dream home can be a rush. The excitement, desire and fear of missing out to another buyer. But sharing that you love a home and really ‘want’ it, will give the agent the emotional leverage to secure a great deal for the seller.  

Other things to keep to yourself include just missing out on another property, a lack of confidence in the market, if you are feeling nervous or stressed. Play it cool and confident – fake it until you make it! 

What You Should Share

The details you can share which will help you find the home and deal you want include: 

  • Your price window. Keep the price bracket open and give yourself some room for negotiation. 
  • Exactly what you are looking for in a property. How many bedrooms, outdoor spaces, living areas etc. 
  • The areas you do want to consider, and those you do not. Be clear about whether you are interested in looking at other areas.  
  • If you have been pre-approved for finance, but again, keep your figure quiet until the final moment of negotiations.  
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