Author Topic: Real estate agent loyalty?  (Read 2431 times)

neophyte

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Real estate agent loyalty?
« on: May 22, 2016, 01:10:30 PM »
Am I supposed to only work with one real estate agent if I want to buy a house? I'm early on in the process and not even 100% committed to buying. So far I've been finding houses I'm interested in on realtor.com and then talking to the first person who gets back to me.  I don't want to find myself getting blacklisted or anything though.

Cassie

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Re: Real estate agent loyalty?
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2016, 05:11:46 PM »
It is preferable to work with a agent you like and trust. You can tell them what you are looking for and they will help find it. Otherwise whoever first shows you the house you buy gets the commission or I think it can be split with whoever writes the offer but it can get tricky.

Kaybee

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Re: Real estate agent loyalty?
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2016, 06:20:46 PM »
Until you sign a contract, you aren't "held" to work with any agent (be careful of creating verbal contracts though!).  Be aware though, any agent you speak to until you sign a contract, isn't really held to client confidentiality.  So if you look at one house with a realtor and say "It's great...but I can afford $X more, I'd like to see what THAT would get me" and then later happen to put an offer in on a home that he/or a friend represents, he can tell the client he has a contract with "He can pay more than what he's offering, put in a counter offer at $X more".  Long story short, until you sign a contract, don't go into details about yourself because it CAN work against you later on.

As a former agent, I'd actually recommend *against* using the listing agent.  They would LOVE to represent you (because then its 2x the commission off of one sale) but I have seen a lot of agents NOT represent one client or the other when put in that position.

It is possible to have commissions split between agents (ie, who shows you the house vs who writes the offer) but it can get ugly and you could be on the hook for a portion if the fight over money goes south.  Any good agent you call should be asking right away if you already have an agent representing you (it's one of our guidelines in order to reduce the number of times one person has several agents "working" for him/her)

neophyte

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Re: Real estate agent loyalty?
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2016, 07:48:01 PM »
Until you sign a contract, you aren't "held" to work with any agent (be careful of creating verbal contracts though!).  Be aware though, any agent you speak to until you sign a contract, isn't really held to client confidentiality.  So if you look at one house with a realtor and say "It's great...but I can afford $X more, I'd like to see what THAT would get me" and then later happen to put an offer in on a home that he/or a friend represents, he can tell the client he has a contract with "He can pay more than what he's offering, put in a counter offer at $X more".  Long story short, until you sign a contract, don't go into details about yourself because it CAN work against you later on.

As a former agent, I'd actually recommend *against* using the listing agent.  They would LOVE to represent you (because then its 2x the commission off of one sale) but I have seen a lot of agents NOT represent one client or the other when put in that position.

It is possible to have commissions split between agents (ie, who shows you the house vs who writes the offer) but it can get ugly and you could be on the hook for a portion if the fight over money goes south.  Any good agent you call should be asking right away if you already have an agent representing you (it's one of our guidelines in order to reduce the number of times one person has several agents "working" for him/her)

Very helpful thanks!

It is preferable to work with a agent you like and trust. You can tell them what you are looking for and they will help find it.

Err, I doubt I'll find one I trust. I'm the kind of person who has to spend hundreds of hours with you before I'll start to trust you. I don't trust either my doctor or my dentist and I've been seeing them for 4 years. I'm doubly distrustful of anyone who stands to benefit from selling me something.


adamcollin

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Re: Real estate agent loyalty?
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2016, 04:10:06 AM »
You can compare different companies and eventually choose the one most suitable to you but I would suggest working with one real estate agent only.

zephyr911

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Re: Real estate agent loyalty?
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2016, 07:55:04 AM »
Until you sign a contract, you aren't "held" to work with any agent (be careful of creating verbal contracts though!).  Be aware though, any agent you speak to until you sign a contract, isn't really held to client confidentiality.  So if you look at one house with a realtor and say "It's great...but I can afford $X more, I'd like to see what THAT would get me" and then later happen to put an offer in on a home that he/or a friend represents, he can tell the client he has a contract with "He can pay more than what he's offering, put in a counter offer at $X more".  Long story short, until you sign a contract, don't go into details about yourself because it CAN work against you later on.

As a former agent, I'd actually recommend *against* using the listing agent.  They would LOVE to represent you (because then its 2x the commission off of one sale) but I have seen a lot of agents NOT represent one client or the other when put in that position.

It is possible to have commissions split between agents (ie, who shows you the house vs who writes the offer) but it can get ugly and you could be on the hook for a portion if the fight over money goes south.  Any good agent you call should be asking right away if you already have an agent representing you (it's one of our guidelines in order to reduce the number of times one person has several agents "working" for him/her)
^^^YES.

OP, I'm in the biz (part-time agent, investor) and all of this is spot on. I'll add a few things:

It's generally regarded as bad form to take up a bunch of someone's (unpaid) time if you don't plan on hiring them as your agent, but there's nothing to stop you from doing so. I would suggest, however, that you do as much online research as you can, then interview a few agents and pick one to sign an agency agreement with when you're ready to get into showings. As long as you dot the i's and cross the t's, even that agreement can be undone without great pain if you find you don't work well together, and it does raise them to a much higher standard of trust and responsibility regarding any information you share with them in the course of your search.

Beriberi

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Re: Real estate agent loyalty?
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2016, 12:37:02 PM »
If you are in an area service by Redfin, I would recommend using one of their agents. They typically will refund around 1% of the purchase price when you are buying (they take 2% instead of the standard 3%). I've bought twice with them and really been happy.


tonysemail

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Re: Real estate agent loyalty?
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2016, 03:25:15 PM »
have you tried asking friends or coworkers who live in the area for a reference?
in my area, i feel like everyone knows a few real estate agents.

Who you decide to work with really depends on where you're at.
i've been pretty loyal to my last agent.
we've done several deals with her and there's a comfort level that would have to be re-established if i switched agents.

on the other hand, my in law viewed agent commissions as one negotiating point in his favor.
He offered his business to whichever selling agent listed a property he was interested in.
as others mentioned, this represents a conflict of interests, so most reputable agents would pass up that opportunity and send you to a coworker in their office.