It costs you nothing as the buyer in the transaction when you have a buyers agent representing you. The sellers pay the commissions to the buy & sell side of the transaction. When you choose a realtor to represent you, that agent has a fiduciary duty (the highest responsibility) to get you the best deal, the most favorable terms, and look out for your best interests. Realtors are overseen by the Texas Real Estate Commission, are professionals and are there to advise you for FREE. If you do not have a realtor with you, you are going in blind and are severely at a disadvantage in contracts and negotiating with someone sellers (to include builders). If you intend to hire a realtor, please do so before walking into the property the first time. Make sure you take that agent with you. If the seller or home builder will not recognize your Realtor, go elsewhere. They builders are looking out for themselves and do not have your best interest in mind.
Hire a professional home inspector immediately after the offer is accepted on any house you have under contract. Your Realtor will fully explain what it is and why it will protect you. Do not listen to the builder giving you their spiel about "you don't need a home inspection, it's a new home and what could go wrong, dont worry etc." There is plenty of that can go wrong! Just because it's new does not mean it was built to code or built properly. When my wife & I moved to Pflugerville, 10 years ago, we purchased a new build. The builder cut corners on so many levels, we decided to purchase an older home when we moved to Temple, in an established neighborhood. This home we are in now was built so much better. It's older but the quality and craftsmanship is so much better too. They just don't build things like they use to. You have a right to hire a home inspector and you should not skip this most important step.
Do not close until the builder corrects any major problems If there are any. They can jump up and down and threaten all they want. If you have a significant problem, the builder may never repair it if you do not insist on them fixing it before closing. If you have a major disagreement, seek the advice of your closing attorney immediately.
Regarding Home Inspection -
Make sure you use a home inspector who is local, licensed, bonded, insured and a member of American Soceity of Home Inspectors (ASHI). ASHI has a website . You can look up information there how to find a home inspector in your area & learn more about the home inspection process.
*** Do not use a home inspector recommended by the builder - under any circumstances! They are working for the builder not YOU.
Regarding Your Closing -
A very important issue about your closing and choice of closing companies: I will give you some advice about another bad issue with new home builders. You should know that new home builders use regular people "trained" to do closings that are not attorneys! THERE IS A DIFFERENCE!
* When you choose your own attorney to do the closing, that attorney has a legal and fiduciary duty to protect you & advise you. If you have hired a Realtor - they can recommend a local title company here in Temple to do the closing, like Monteith Abstract & Title, First Community Title or CentraLand Title. They make sure there is a clean and clear Title - which means to you that there is no liens against the property, even for a new build.
* When you let a home builder talk you into using one of their "closing companies" you should know that these closing companies have no duty to you whatsoever. This is a big problem because They have no duty to disclose something to you which may be a potential problem. Their duty is to the "sale". Yes, I know many home builders offer you big incentives like thousands of dollars $$$ off your home or in free upgrades in order to use their closing company. There is a reason for this! You are trading free stuff for you not using a closing ATTORNEY of YOUR choice. That is what this amounts to. In my opinion, this should be illegal.
The old adage is still true today - buyer beware. Don't be the patsy in the room. The more you know the better.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact me at 254-654-2828 or firstname.lastname@example.org www.micksellstemple.com