Buying a home or villa is no small matter. Besides being the largest, or one of the largest financial transaction you may ever undertake, it’s probably also the most complex. Additionally, if you’re buying a second home, a vacation or investment property or pre-retirement home on Hilton Head, chances are you’re searching in a market that you don’t fully understand. That’s where licensed realtors come in.

Local realtors have in-depth knowledge of the available inventory, appropriate list versus sales price data, inspection concerns, lender resources, recommendations for remodelers and other sub-contractors, quietly held inventory that may not be visible on the national real estate hubs, and much more.

There are many good reasons to work with a qualified real estate professional—especially a trained professional who has earned the Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation, representing best-in-class buyer services.

Most importantly in South Carolina, from a Buyers perspective, is understanding the terms of Agency Relationships. Your realtor is required by licensing law to provide you with a definition and explanation of the difference between being a Customer and a Client of the agency. The terms sound similar but are vastly different when applied to a Buyer’s best interests.

Without a signed Buyers Representation Agreement with a licensed realtor – even when the realtor is working on your behalf as a Customer to help you find your perfect island getaway – that realtor is required to protect the best interests of the Seller, as defined in agency relationships. Contractually, a signed agreement already exists between the Sellers’ brokerage and your agent’s brokerage. This document requires loyalty, confidentiality and fiscal responsibility to protect the Seller’s investment and best interests. In other words, without a signed Buyers Representation Agreement, your agent is technically working for the Seller versus you the Buyer.

When you look for an ABR® before you look for a home, you’ll be served, not sold. Your interests become their interests. And you’ll be working with someone who has gone the extra mile by completing specialized training in delivering the best in buyer-representation services. Plus, a REALTOR® who has an ABR® designation also has an established track record, with proven experience in representing the concerns of home buyers.

Lynne Anderson is a trained and certified Accredited Buyers Representative. For more information on buying or selling luxury property on Hilton Head, connect with Lynne at 843.384.5426 or via email at