Having an agent represent you in conversations with a builder can have several advantages, and it's important that you include your agent prior to setting up an appointment to see homes offered by a builder. Builders typically require that your agent be present and sign in at the first contact if you wish to be represented.
Remember, the sales agent at your appointment is working for the builder and is bound by law to do what is in the best interest of the builder. He or she will likely be honest with you, but is always working in the best interests of the person on the other side of the transaction.
A buyer's agent can review listings to see if current owners who bought previously in the community are selling their units so that you have a more complete picture of what's available. An agent may also be able to provide information about the builder's other developments and experience with past clients.
Did you know that builders write their own contracts and generally do not use the standard regional sales contract? Having an agent represent you costs you nothing when you're buying a home, and can serve as an important resource to help you review the builder's contract. A buyer's agent can also help alert you to the unique risks involved in new construction contracts, and may even be able to negotiate a better deal for you.