Property Acquisition Methods – Comparison Chart ©

Here’s a summary of the 3 approaches to buying property, with advantages & disadvantages of each listed and compared. A ‘Buyer Agent’ levels the playing field between you and the property seller, by coming between you & the Seller’s agent, and working exclusively for you.

When considering a purchase as large as a piece of real estate, it’s wise not to buy on impulse, but to plan ahead & ensure you not only get ‘good value’, but also the property is the most suitable of those available, for your requirements, and is acquired for the best possible price.

Item ‘Mainstream’ Agent Single (‘Buyer’) Agent D.I.Y.
Works for… Vendor Purchaser Client (buyer) Do all the work yourself
Fee (cost) Included in price, & tied to ‘high-as-possible’ sale price
  1. Fixed in advance
  2. Includes counsel, research, travel, property screening, negotiation, documentation, inspections and more
  3. Your agent has no incentive toward higher price
Includes extensive research, travel, documentation, negotiation skills & unknown negotiation outcomes
Price As high as agent can get
  1. As low as agent can negotiate
  2. Protection against emotionally ‘over-paying’
  3. Objectively review property against your requirements
Depends on buyer’s ability to negotiate with a (often) skilled and experienced agent
Property limitations Agent’s property listings only No limitation; Search & screen any and all property meeting your requirements, including property not actively ‘on-the-market’ On-market property only
Attitude Justifies vendor’s view of price & value
  1. Finds every reason to reduce price
  2. Working exclusively for Buyer-client
  3. Dispassionate – no emotional involvement with the property
Time & frustration often play a major part;
Can fall-in-love with a property
  • No perceived cost;
  • Familiar to most Australians
  1. Access to all suitable properties
  2. Extensive current market & property information
  3. Fixed cost
  4. No buying pressure
  5. Client anonymity
  6. Access to many industry insider contacts & resources
  7. Someone in ’your corner’ working to get you the Best Deal
Vary with the person’s expertise, time, contacts, perseverance etc
  1. Pressure to buy at highest possible price;
  2. No objective property analysis
Single Agency (Buyer Agency) is unfamiliar to many Australians
  1. Generally limited to ‘on-market’ property;
  2. Unknown cost;
  3. May require much research