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Benefits of Having a Buyer's Broker on Your Side

By Jolie Muss | Broker in Upper West Side, New...
  • Questions for Home Buyers!

    Posted Under: General Area in New York, Home Buying in New York, In My Neighborhood in New York  |  December 10, 2011 8:33 PM  |  2,901 views  |  1 comment

    Ready to buy in Manhattan?
    Know the answers to these questions before you contact a broker!

    Jolie Muss

    Licensed Real Estate Broker

    The Upper West Side's Buyer's Broker

    331 Columbus Avenue  Suite #3D New York, New York, NY 10023

    Office: 212 721-3301

    Email: broker@joliemuss.com  Website: http://joliemuss.com

    I am an exclusive buyer's broker, so my loyalty is only to you and anything you disclose to me is confidential and will not be disclosed to anyone, including sellers and listing agents/brokers without your permission

    Here are some questions that if you can answer them will help me to assist you most efficiently!

    1. Who will be involved in making the decisions? 
    2. Is this purchase for yourself? If not-
    3. Who is this purchase for?
    4. Will you be living here full-time?
    5. Will this be a pied a terre, or a second or vacation home?
    6. Were you planning to rent it out or sublet it?
    7. Do you have Pets, what kind?
    8. When will you be ready to purchase a home?  
    9. When did you need/want to close and move in?
    10. Do you own your own home now and do you have to sell it? (The process from contract to closing usually takes around 3 months unless it's a cash and/or a sponsor apartment)
    11. Which neighborhoods do you prefer?
    12. Do you have good credit?
    13. Do you have a steady income?
    14. Are you financially qualified to buy?
    15. Are you pre-approved for financing? 
    16. Would this be an all cash deal?
    17. Do you have a problem with the board process and want a sponsor apartment?
    18. (Unless it's a sponsor apartment, you will have to provide all income & financial information for a co-op or condo.)
    19. Do you want a coop or a condo?
    20. Do you need a townhouse?
    21. What is the minimum amount of rooms that you need?
    22. What is sales price you would like to pay?
    23. What is the most you can afford?
    24. What is the most maintenance you will pay?
    25. What type of building do you prefer: Pre-war ? Modern ? Brownstone? New construction?
    26. Where do you live now? 
    27. Where do you work?
    28. How long have you been looking?
    29. Do you have a real estate attorney who is experienced in Manhattan?
    30. What has your experience been so far with agents and brokers?
    31. Are you presently working with any agents or brokers?

    © 2011 -2014 Jolie Muss

    Please tell me which apartments you've already seen and with which brokers
     (so I don't duplicate the results and waste anyone's time)

      Preferences & Extras



      Laundry Room?

      Luxury kitchen?

      Outdoor Space?


      Bike Storage?


      High Floor?

      Low Floor?

      Other Amenities?

      Anything Else? 

      PS. You are supposed to be presented with an NYS agency disclosure when you initiate any contact with a licensed NYS agent and/or broker regarding a property for sale or for rent. To familiarize with yourself here is a link to the: 
      New York State Disclosure Form for Buyer and Seller http://www.dos.state.ny.us/forms/licensing/1736-a.pdf 
      (If you are working with a buyer's broker you would check buyer's agent) 
      © 2011 -2014Jolie Muss

      Posted Under: Home Buying in New York, Agent2Agent in New York, In My Neighborhood in New York  |  September 24, 2011 8:12 AM  |  3,149 views  |  1 comment

      This is an excerpt from a report by the Federal Trade Commission and The U.S. Department of Justice on: 

      (Please see my other blog for links to the DOJ website about buyer's rebates)


      A. Overview of the Typical Real Estate Transaction
      At its most basic, real estate brokerage is about matching a home seller with a home buyer.9 As one panelist, who represents a major brokerage franchise, remarked, a home seller wants to "negotiate the best possible price in the quickest possible time."10 Brokers reduce the transaction costs of matching buyers and sellers and also provide their clients with ancillary services related to the transaction. Although there is no legal impediment to consumers buying and selling homes on their own, the large majority of consumers choose to work with a real estate broker. For example, a recent National Association of Realtors ("NAR") survey found that 84 percent of consumers employ a real estate broker to help them sell their home, and the vast majority of these home sellers appear to be contracting with real estate brokers to provide assistance on all aspects of the transaction.11Another NAR survey found that nine out of ten buyers use a real estate professional during their home searches.12 The Internet also appears to be playing an increasingly important role in the real estate transaction. For example, NAR data show that the Internet was second only to real estate agents as the most commonly used information source for home buyers.13
      1. Description of Real Estate Brokers and Agents

      Although the terms may vary by state, there are two principal categories of real estate brokerage professionals: "agents" and "brokers." Generally speaking, agents work directly with consumers and brokers supervise agents. Typically, agents solicit listings, work with homeowners to sell their homes, and show buyers homes that are likely to match their preferences. Instead of working with customers directly, brokers often provide agents with branding, advertising, and other services that help the agents complete transactions. In terms of branding, the broker may invest in and create a brand or affiliate with a national or regional franchisor that provides a brand with certain reputational value and an advertising campaign. As for services, brokers may provide agents with computers, website hosting, office space, training, and marketing.

      States require real estate brokers and agents to be licensed. These licensing statutes form the framework for state regulation and oversight of the profession by establishing requirements for licensure (such as minimum age, education, and experience) and various requirements and prohibitions regarding business practices and conduct. State commissions, frequently composed of real estate brokers, oversee drafting of and compliance with these laws and regulations.14

      Brokers and agents (hereinafter, "brokers")15 usually are more informed about the local real estate market and the process of a real estate transaction than most home buyers and sellers.16 This informational advantage derives from two sources. First, only brokers have direct access to the MLS, which is a local or regional joint venture of real estate brokers who pool and disseminate information on homes available for sale in their particular geographic areas.17 The MLS provides information both on the homes currently for sale in a particular geographic area and past sales data, which typically are used in determining a home's listing price or a buyer's offer price. Second, most brokers have been involved in many more real estate transactions than their clients. This experience builds expertise in gauging market conditions and knowledge of the details involved in completing a real estate transaction.

      1. The Seller's Agreement with the Listing Broker

      The typical real estate transaction involves several steps. First, if the seller chooses to hire a real estate broker rather than selling the home on his or her own, the seller contracts with a "listing broker." A home seller may consider any number of brokers before choosing one with whom to list the home, but NAR's 2006 industry survey notes that the majority of sellers contact only one listing broker.18 Once the seller has selected a listing broker, they enter into a contractual relationship called a "listing agreement" by which the broker agrees to market and sell the home in exchange for a set fee, typically in the form of a percentage commission. The commission "rate" is the percentage of the home sales price that the broker retains as a commission. Commission "fees" are the total dollar amount paid by consumers for real estate brokerage services. This contract often specifies the commission the homeowner will pay the listing broker if the home is sold within a specified period of time, how the home is to be listed in the MLS, and, as discussed below, the share of the commission to be offered by the listing broker to a so-called "cooperating broker," who works with the buyer.19 The listing broker typically markets the home, both within his or her brokerage firm and to other brokers in the community, by uploading the listing data, including the offer of compensation to cooperating brokers, into the MLS database so that the information can be disseminated to cooperating brokers, who in turn can inform potential buyers of the listing.

      There are three principal types of listing agreements. In the most common of the three, an "exclusive right to sell" contract, the listing broker receives a payment if the home is sold during the listing period, regardless of who finds a buyer for the home.20 In an "exclusive agency" agreement, the listing broker receives payment if any broker finds the buyer, but does not receive payment if the seller finds the buyer.21 In an "open listing," a broker has a nonexclusive right to sell the home and receive payment, but other brokers or the seller may also sell the home without any payment to the listing broker.22

      1. The Buyer's Relationship with the Cooperating Broker

      The broker who works with the buyer is often referred to as the "cooperating broker" "or "buyer's broker."23 Cooperating brokers typically attempt to find housing from the available stock that match buyers' preferences, show prospective buyers homes for sale, provide them information about comparable home sales that have occurred in the area, assist prospective buyers in becoming pre-qualified for a certain level of financing,24 advise them on making offers, and assist in closing the transaction. Buyers typically do not pay their brokers directly.25 Rather, listing brokers compensate cooperating brokers according to the terms stated in the MLS listing, which usually specifies an unconditional offer of compensation to any broker that is the "procuring cause" of the sale.26 For example, a listing broker who charges a 6 percent commission may offer to compensate a cooperating broker with 3 percent, half of the listing broker's commission. As one panelist reported, it is common for a listing broker to offer 50 percent of his or her commission to a broker who provides a buyer who closes on the home, although this percentage may vary according to market conditions; in slow markets, a listing broker may offer higher compensation to attract scarce buyers, and this may be reversed in a hot market.27 Differences in offers of compensation may also arise based on local norms for historical reasons.28

      The legal relationship between the buyer and the cooperating broker varies from state to state and has changed over time. Until the 1990s it was common for the cooperating broker to be a subagent of the listing broker, working on the seller's behalf.29 During the 1990s, most states revised their laws to allow buyer representation, and at the same time NAR revised its policies, eliminating seller-subagency as a condition of participation in the MLS.30 Today, after a decade of agency law reform across the country, it is more common for the cooperating broker to owe fiduciary duties solely to the buyer.31 In some states, however, a cooperating broker may be a "transaction" broker who has limited fiduciary duties to both the buyer and seller and whose role is to assure that the transaction proceeds smoothly.32 In all states, brokers are required to disclose to buyers the type of relationship that exists so buyers know whom the cooperating broker represents, although the timing of this disclosure varies by state.33

      1. The Buyer's Offer, Contingencies, and Closing in a Typical Transaction

      Once a buyer makes an offer on a home, the listing broker may help the seller evaluate offers and formulate counteroffers and may negotiate directly with the buyer or buyer's broker. If the seller accepts the offer, the home is "under contract," and, pursuant to contracts containing typical contingencies, several things must occur during a stated time period before the transaction closes, such as home inspections, appraisals, securing buyer financing, assuring the title to the home is clear, and conducting necessary repairs.34 Both listing and cooperating brokers typically work together to assure that all contingencies are satisfied, allowing the closing to occur as scheduled. As one broker- panelist explained, in addition to real estate brokers, many other actors are necessary to assure a successful closing, including the mortgage lender, the insurance agent, the home inspector, the termite inspector, the surveyor, the appraiser, the closing attorney (in some states), the title company, and the escrow agent.35 According to this panelist, the seller's broker and the buyer's broker "will work together to make sure that all parts of the transaction are facilitated appropriately," including "working through the transaction itself, meeting the home inspector, helping the seller and/or the buyer understand what the results of the inspection were, overseeing repairs, making sure that things that are necessarily time-sensitive get responded to in a time-sensitive manner."36

      Once all contingencies have been satisfied, the parties proceed to closing, where they exchange purchase money and title to the home. One panelist noted that, in her experience as a broker, lenders' increased use of technology has streamlined the mortgage process, causing the average time from contract to closing to fall from forty- five to sixty days, to thirty days.37 The HUD-1 form required by the Real Estate Settlement Protection Act ("RESPA") is a centerpiece of the closing and requires a detailed listing of the flow of funds from buyer to seller and the use of funds, including selling and buying expenses associated with the transaction and the amount of commission paid to each broker. Although they typically do not play an active role at this stage, brokers often accompany their clients to the closing.38 The brokers are paid their commission at closing.

    2. Would You Trust a Broker That Bullies & Attacks Other Brokers?

      Posted Under: Home Buying in New York, Home Selling in New York, Agent2Agent in New York  |  September 20, 2011 11:13 PM  |  2,969 views  |  6 comments

       I'm always amazed when I see a broker attacking another agent or broker or who calls them names in a public forum like Trulia!

      Everyone is entitled to their own opinion as this is a free country, but belittling a colleague  or competitor (as you see it) because they have a different business model than you (no matter how threatening it seems), isn't expressing an opinion, it's character assassination and surely does not reflect well on the reputation of the person slinging the insults!
      Some of us on Trulia and the Real Estate community throughout the USA want to look out for the consumer/buyer, in addition to ourselves and there are new rules and legislation to support it.
      This concept is new to many older agents & brokers who don't understand that Real Estate Professionals have gained a terrible reputation due to buyers having virtually no representation and sellers often never receiving the offers buyers have made on their properties, which is one of the reasons many consumers have turned to DIY Real Estate! -Many blame the recent Real Estate bubble on the greed of mortgage lenders AND real estate agents & brokers for encouraging buyers to buy homes they couldn't afford and/or have paid too much for or who were encouraged to make too many expensive & frivolous "Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous" improvements to their homes....
      We all work hard whether we represent sellers or buyers (even those who somehow try to swing both ways! LOL!)
      Of course there are slackers and glad handers in a any field, but if you live in a glass house you better watch out for the stones you are throwing, as they are liable to come right back at you.

      I welcome feedback on this post...

      FYI - Comments don't automatically show! Please read my response tosome feedback from Annette Lawrence. Palm Harbor, Florida)

    3. Would You Consider this Ethical or Fair?

      Posted Under: Home Buying in New York County, Home Selling in New York County, Agent2Agent in New York County  |  September 18, 2011 8:58 AM  |  2,848 views  |  4 comments

      My buyer recently received an accepted offer by email and (after multiple affirmations that there were no other offers or buyers from the listing agent at one of the Large NYC brokerages with offices near me) were told by the selling/ listing agent by email that the buyer's attorney would be receiving a contract and provided me the seller's attorney's info. I then also provided the buyer's attorney all of the seller's attorney's info (from the deal sheet the seller's agent also sent us)

      From Monday to Wednesday I received two communications from the seller's agent: one on Tuesday confirming that the seller's attorney was sending out the contract and another the next evening (after I informed them by email that the buyer was removing the inspection contingency -it is a coop) and I quote: 
      "Jolie, Yes, you had mentioned this. It's great news and the attorney has all he needs; don't know why a contract can't go out by tomorrow if it hasn't already"
       When I called the buyer's attorney to find out where we were at, I was told they hadn't heard from the seller's attorney and that he hadn't responded to them.
      So I took it upon myself and called the seller's attorney, only to find out he had never heard of us and that he was in the process of sending out a signed contract to a completely different buyer!!!  
      At first I thought he was mixed-up as this agent had another apartment in the building (in contract) and because he also seemed to be a bit confused, because while we were on the phone, he said he needed to check his email..
      When had read his email he exclaimed "Yes here is something from your attorney but I never use this email account, why was it sent here?" After this call I made many frantic calls to the agent (who always answers his phone), his partner and their brokerage office and finally got to talk to an assistant who did her best to help-me asking her "could there be a mix-up? Did another team member agent take an offer?what's going on??"
      Finally after few hours the seller's agent calls me and sneeringly tells me that yes there was another contract but the lawyer was also supposed to send out ours! I ask him how this could be, as we haven't received any contract and we were repeatedly told we were the only offer. He tells me the seller didn't want him to tell us AND that now the seller has decided to go with the other buyer, as the contract is ready to sign and that they will keep us as a back-up but that no contract will be sent out!!!
       This is not ethical and definitely deceptive and not fair! There is really no recourse as far as I know expect possibly in some other areas...
      I will post an update if there is something else to add to this debacle.
      I welcome any suggestions or feedback on the subject!
      After staying on top of this matter while helping my client pursue other options, ultimately the other contract fell through and the seller's agent and also their attorney finally decided to sell it to my client (who definitely took some time to think about it) and after many other obstacles, twists & turns with my buyer's trust in me, diligence on my part and the buyer's attorney and staff's hard work, we finally closed on this home and my buyer and family moved into their lovely new home!

    4. Price Fixing in Real Estate & All About Legal Buyer's Rebates

      Posted Under: Home Buying in New York, Home Selling in New York, Financing in New York  |  September 7, 2011 11:13 PM  |  1,472 views  |  2 comments
    5. The Grateful Dead Exhibit at The NY Historical Society

      Posted Under: In My Neighborhood in New York  |  March 10, 2010 3:08 PM  |  1,103 views  |  No comments
      Grateful Dead Exhibit at The NY Historical Society

      An extensive exhibit of materials relating to the Grateful Dead opened last week at an unlikely location: in the recently remodeled "NY Historical Society" located on Central Park West and 77th St.
      The exhibit runs until July 4th!


      Credit:Dennis Larkins and Peter Barsotti, Radio City Music Hall poster Oct. 22-31, 1980. Courtesy of Special Collections & Archives, University of California, Santa Cruz. Grateful Dead Archive.

      Museum Hours:
      Tuesday - Thursday: 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM (March30th- July4th)
      Friday: 10:00 AM - 8:00 PM
      Saturday: 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
      Sunday: 11:00 AM - 5:45 PM
      Monday: CLOSED 
      NY Historical Society Phone Number to Check for Closings: 212 873 3400


      Ciao, Jolie

      2010 Jolie Muss
    6. Everything you want to know (and more) about using a Buyer's Broker!

      Posted Under: Home Buying in New York County  |  February 9, 2010 12:05 AM  |  1,129 views  |  2 comments
      Jolie's 27 answers to questions about Buyer Brokerage!
      Everything you want to know (and more) about using a Buyer's Broker!

      In traditional practice, only the seller has full representation by a real estate practitioner. Buyer brokerage ensures the buyer's best interests are represented throughout both the property search and purchase transaction." From Broker Continuing ED “Buyer Brokerage “course taught by: CEnetwork 

      1. I've had property in other places in the US. How come all the agents I find here only work for the seller. Asked Thu Feb 4 2010, 17:21 by Robert 10001
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      It sounds like they may be only showing you their own listings. For full buyer representation your can work with an exclusive buyer's broker or agent. I am a NYS licensed independent broker and work exclusively Manhattan buyers and there is no extra cost to you and can actually help you realize a savings if we work together exclusively. Are you also selling a Manhattan home? February 5th 2010 08:04

      2. FSBO investment property to rent out? Unhappy with local agents, buy listed directly? Asked Thu Jan 28 2010, 10:12 by Voices Member - Home Buying -  3 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Burnie, I'm not sure I understand your question. Are you saying you want to buy a FSBO investment property to rent out? The local newspaper is probably your best bet or FSBO websites. Or that you want to buy properties that are listed with agents directly from the sellers without an agent? If the property is listed the seller pays the commission no matter what for the term of the listing at least. As Anna has mentioned having an experienced Real Estate lawyer is always a good idea in any real estate transfer or contract and they may be able to represent you if the property is FSBO or listed. Another excellent option is to contact a local exclusive buyer's broker and most will represent you at no extra charge but maybe be able to extend a buyer's rebate depending on the state. (They might ask you to sign something that protects them and binds you for a certain amount of time from working with another broker but your lawyer can review and advise you on that before signing). You can probably find one in your area by searching in Google or elsewhere for a buyer broker or buyer's broker in your town. You can find a lot of answers about buyer brokerage in my Q& A's here on Trulia. I hope this helps answer your questions! Good Luck! - Sat Jan 30 2010, 07:42

      3. What is my jobs as a buyers agent? If my clients offer is lower then the asking price must I apologize or must the sellers agent negotiate?
      Asked Sat Jan 30 2010, 04:49 by Frank Festa -In My Neighborhood in Watchung 27 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Frank, Are you asking this as a rhetorical/ to prove a point question? In NYS ( and probably everywhere) you must present all offers to the listing/selling agent and they must present the offer to the seller asap! It's always a good idea to have it in writing and ask for a reply in writing, to ensure that the listing agent does indeed present the offer in a timely manner..Does that answer your question? - Sat Jan 30 2010, 07:06

      4. How do you find the right real estate agent? Also, what is the difference between a buyers agent and a seller's agent
      Asked Fri Apr 24 2009, 06:47 by Hrs26 - Home Buying in 19131 - 5 answers .Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Hrs26, There are exclusive buyer's brokers/agents who represent the buyer. If an agent/broker is showing their own listing they are mainly representing the broker and the rules and disclosure requirements vary from state to state. If you are looking to buy a home you can search online in your area for an exclusive buyer broker (agent) or an buyer's broker, usually there is no charge to you and some states even allow rebates if agreed to beforehand and allowed by your financing. ( You can also make sure they are licensed by checking online with your state's real estate agent and brokers database) I hope this has been helpful! - Sat Jan 30 2010, 02:26

      5. Tips for choosing a buyer's broker in new york. Asked Sun Jan 24 2010, 18:37 by Jalexinyc - Home Buying in New York - 12 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Jalexinyc, An agent who is exclusively a buyer's broker will have a fiduciary responsibility purely to the buyer, but an agent who is showing you their listings (which is often the case now with buyers finding properties through websites) primarily owes their fiduciary responsibility to the seller and also gets double the commission. Here is another article from the "the Real Deal". "Cutting out the broker as middleman -Armed with info from the Web, more buyers go straight to listing agents, giving them both sides of a sale" 
      http://therealdeal.com/newyork/articles/cutting-out-the-middleman  I agree in theory with Anna but in my experience not many follow those duties, so it's up to you to keep in mind as a consumer the basic rule of business: CAVEAT EMPTOR! (Buyer Beware!) Good Luck! - Mon Jan 25 2010, 12:34
      Jalexinyc, Definitely a listing agent/and or broker would have an incentive to show you their listings as that means double the commission and perhaps extra status or perks if just their firm's. Also if you are buying a condo or coop in a building with 4 or more apartments there is no requirement to present you with an agency agreement. If you are working with an exclusive buyer's broker (or agent) their loyalty is to you the buyer, where if they are the listing agent/broker they're loyalty is only to the seller and anything you tell them can be disclosed to the seller.. I hope this clears things up..I have answered a lot of questions about this on Trulia so if you have the time take a look.. There is an interesting feature on buyer brokers from the Real Deal here: http://therealdeal.com/newyork/articles/buyers%E2%80%99-brok… - Mon Jan 25 2010, 04:03 ..

      6. We own a property in NYC and want to hire a broker. How can we find out the brokers that sold or represented units that have sold on this website?
      Asked Sun Jan 17 2010, 05:54 by NYC Owner - Home Buying in New York - 13 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      nycowner, As mentioned by others Streeteasy is another great resource and if you are looking for an agent and/or broker who has previously listed properties in your building it's great for that..Just look up your building... On the point of brokers and agents: An agent MUST work under a broker and share their listing and/or buyer's commission with that broker/brokerage. There are also associate brokers who work under a broker and perhaps they get a better "split".. Most firms are large franchises of National & International companies..There are some smaller independent brokerages such as mine (At this time I do not have any agents or brokers under me so I am the only salesperson) with the ability to offer a much more personalized service and other advantages especially when it comes to servicing buyers! I specialize in helping buyers so my loyalty is ONLY to the buyer. I believe I may be the only exclusive buyer- broker in Manhattan? Buyer brokerage is much more well known in California & other states. Good luck with selling your property and if you are not presently working with a brokerage let me know what you are trying to sell as I may have a buyer looking for what a property like yours.. - Tue Jan 19 2010, 21:21

      7. Isn't the real estate agent supposed to help the buyer? Asked Sun Dec 13 2009, 20:02 by Ellee Gene - Home Buying in 10017 - 6 answers .
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Ellee, You may want to work with a buyer's broker This agent sounds like she may be showing you her own listings and in that case her loyalty is to the seller. The sidewalk may not be the responsibility of the homeowner but an issue with the city. If it is a home in need of renovation than yes cracked walls might be expected.. You say house? In that case you are supposed to be provided with an agency agreement. There is an article here called "beware of dual agency" http://www.dos.state.ny.us/cnsl/dualagcy.html that explains this. Please let me know if I can assist you if you are not presently working with a broker! -

      8. Do we need to pay our broker's fees if the house doesn't co-broke and we found it, made the contact and visited it ourselves?
      Asked Fri Jan 15 2010, 11:40 by Newbuyer - Home Buying in New York - 4 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Newbuyer, It's unseal that someone doesn't co-broke..especially if a member of REBNY. If the broker/agent you were working with and no indolent with this property they are probably not entitled to a commission unless you signed an agreement with them..On the other hand not having a broker/agent to protect your interests and negotiate could impact your savings and rights. You say it is a house..Did the listing broker provide you with an agency agreement? This is required for single family homes in NYS. Here is an article from the NYS DOS "Be wary of Dual Agency" http://www.dos.state.ny.us/cnsl/dualagcy.html You can request a broker or get your own as far as I know in any case you should have an experienced NY real estate attorney and if you would like a list please let me know. What area of New York are you buying in? -Sat Jan 16 2010

       9. Isn't the buyer's agent motivated to get me to buy the highest priced place I can?
      Asked Tue Jan 5 2010, 19:57 by Kirsten - Home Buying in Upper West Side - 25 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Hello Kristen, Your questions & answers are very interesting! All agents and brokers are bound to represent you fairly to some degree and this is usually defined in writing with an agency disclosure but not on NY condos or coops with more than 5 units. In any case the selling/listing broker really only owes their loyalty to the seller unless agreed to otherwise, so a dedicated buyer's broker is the ONLY one really required to protect your interests. As other have stated 1.5% +/- of $0 is $0 so no one is likely to show you more expensive properties unless they are only showing you their OWN listings or their partners..and that is the problem in buying from a listing agent because they will make more money if they both sell and list the property. As a matter of fact a buyer's agent is legally allowed in NY to extend a buyer's rebate if agreed to at the outset and if financing allows so this is something else to consider when choosing your agent/broker. As to attending openhouses the buyer's agent could contact the listing agent and register you if it's not convenient for you to have them accompany you but it's always to your advantage to have them with you as they can shield you from being asked questions that may reveal information that could affect future negotiations. (You can also notify the listing agent that you are working with someone and there is usually a space on the sign -in sheet and also it never hurts to have a buyer's broker agreement as this may provide other incentives as well!) You may be seeing outdated listings as many agents keep them online and advertised so as to attract buyers and sellers but this is a widespread and unethical practice that I have encountered for many years both as a professional and as a buyer and find very damaging to the perception of the industry. It's also possible that these recently sold comps are from properties that took a long time to close or as you say that sellers finally got realistic about pricing. That is another issue that was discussed in the realdeal last year that agents/brokers were taking overpriced listing just to "trawl" for buyers & sellers.. I'm not clear if you are looking in the UWS of Manhattan or Brooklyn but I wish you the best of luck! Please let me know if I can be of any assistance when the time comes :) - Sat Jan 9 2010, 17:39 

      10. Are there any cons for purchasing an apt without a broker and just directly with the seller and their agent?
      Asked Tue Jun 23 2009, 08:08 by Ses1122 - Home Buying in New York - 7 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Ses, You have received many excellent answers..One thing to take note of is that the buyer's broker's (cobroke) commission is written into the listing agreement so usually there is no extra charge or cost for having a buyer's broker, guide , advise you and help streamline the whole process AND often save you money! Especially if they offer you a buyer's rebate. (Legal in New York State if allowed by your financing /other restrictions may apply)
      Please make sure your privacy and negotiating strategy are protected if you go it alone!
      Best wishes! - Fri Jul 10 2009, 16:47

      11. Are Buyer's rebates allowed in NYC? Asked Tue Jun 9 2009, 20:18 by Nyc Chef For… - Home Buying in 10025 - 8 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      NYC Chef for 3, I am an experienced broker not an agent ,as a buyer's broker I can also legally give buyers the rebate you are asking about. This agent is NOT doing the work of the buyer's agent as the listing and/or selling agent has no fiduciary responsibility to the buyer (according to NYS law and also REBNY) but only owes confidentiality and loyalty to the seller! (unless the agent and you have agreed in writing to dual agency). Here is a link to the NYS Department of State Legal memo : "Be wary of dual agency":
      http://www.dos.state.ny.us/cnsl/dualagcy.html I've also provided a link to the NYS real estate laws below. I hope you have also retained an experienced NYS real estate attorney as NYC coop due diligence and contracts and closings can be complicated!  If it doesn't work out and you have to buy another home and are no longer with an agent or broker or you know someone else who wants to purchase an NYC home and obtain a legal buyer's rebate please contact me first. Best Wishes! - Sun Jun 14 2009, 19:36
      NYC Chef for 3, If the selling agent is the listing agent their loyalty is owed only to the seller.
      ( unless you have consented to dual agency.) As others have answered, the agent may not be allowed to lower their commission as it's up to the managing broker and not the agent! If they are both the listing agent and selling agent they will get a larger percentage of the total commission agreed upon at the time of listing ie: say the total commission is 8% and they get a 50% cut then they will get 4% of the sales price (if the agent is a top producer they may get a higher cut say 65%) but if someone else sells it or they are just a buyer's agent or a selling agent then they will get 2% of the sales price (again depending on the agreement they have with their manager). So unless someone is a buyer's broker (and the only broker) it's not likely that anyone will be able to shave anything off their commission.Wed Jun 10 2009, 08:31

      12. I am looking to buy an apartment in New York City. Are there real estate brokers who offer cash back rebates?
      Asked Tue Nov 18 2008, 14:54 by David - Home Buying in New York - 8 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      David, I would like to add an update here: Buyer's cash rebates in New York have been in practice and legal for over a year now! Here is the info from the US department of Justice website:
      http://www.usdoj.gov/atr/public/real_estate/newyork.htm  Please contact me by phone or email if you would like to know how you can get a buyer's rebate by purchasing a home through me or would like me to show you a listed home, I can show you any NYC listed homes and more. Also let me know if you have any other questions about rebates! - Mon May 25 2009, 08:13
      David, My focus is representing buyers and giving them professional and personalized service, so they can obtain the best deal, while finding them the home that best suits their needs.. If offering a rebate to buyers is in fact legal I will offer that as well! Please contact me so we can discuss all your options.
      Jolie Muss Licensed Manhattan Real Estate Broker & Brokerage Located on the Upper West Side 212 721-3301 joliemuss@joliemuss.com - Tue Nov 25 2008, 09:35
      David, I'm not sure that a rebate is not allowed but I do know that you are not allowed to give anyone part of your commission unless they are a broker, agent or attorney. Whether there are limits on the gift a buyer's broker is allowed to give, I am also not sure about but I would be glad to investigate. You would be best served by an exclusive buyer 's broker as a listing broker might only show you homes listed by their companies though this is not allowed by the National Association of Realtor's in other states (such as Arizona where I was licensed some years ago). Please feel free to contact me to represent you as I am a very skilled negotiator. Jolie Muss Licensed Real Estate Broker& Brokerage joliemuss@joliemuss.com 212 721-3301 - Thu Nov 20 2008, 08:19

      13. Does anyone know a good buyers rep for Manhattan? Thank you! Asked Thu May 7 2009, 09:49 by HomeSweetHome - Home Buying in New York 18 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Home, I wanted to add that of course any agent/or broker can be a buyer's agents and many wear both hats very well both ethically and professionally (ie: MH) but you asked specifically for a Buyer's rep. From my previous Arizona Real Estate, NYSRE, Relocation, NAR and buyer's broker's education and training when someone is showing you ONLY " their own or their company's listings" they are probably not protecting your best interests because you are not seeing all that is available and if it's their own listing they will get double the amount of commission of the selling price! Also anything you tell them it is their duty to share with the seller as they have a fiduciary duty to the seller but not to the buyer. I'm not aware of anyone that uses agency agreements unless for a multi- family home or the like as condos and coops are not considered "Residential Real Property" and are excluded from NYS's agency disclosure requirements. (If I am in error please let me know as it is extremely important to me to be accurate and honest) Membership in REBNY is more applicable to a seller's agent /broker than a buyer's broker. I was previously a member of REBNY and MANAR and I will consider it again, especially if I start accepting listings.
      Best wishes to you in finding a knowledgeable pro-active and "simpatico" buyer's broker and the home of your dreams! - Fri May 8 2009, 14:13
      Hello Home Sweet Home! I commend you on your choice to work with a Buyer's Broker! I'm an Exclusive Residential Buyer's Broker and Brokerage for Manhattan. I specialize in the Upper West Side but I also provide professional assistance anywhere in Manhattan. I'd like to share a quote from a course about Buyer's Brokerage:
      "In traditional practice, only the seller has full representation by a real estate practitioner. Buyer brokerage ensures the buyer's best interests are represented throughout both the property search and purchase transaction."  Let me know if I can be of any assistance, Thanks! - Thu May 7 2009

      14. Should I use a buyer's agent when I move? I know what I want & need a rebate of the commission.
      Asked Mon Mar 9 2009, 22:24 by Wanna Buy? -Home Buying in 10001
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Wanna, I'm sorry to contradict anyone..Buyer's rebates are allowed in NY and are quite legal..(There can be some restrictions if they are not allowed with some financing arrangements) In fact I offer a generous buyer's rebate at closing if you purchase a NYC home, by using me as your broker .. If anyone needs more information about the legality or what kind of rebate I offer, please contact me by phone or email..(My website does not have the details as yet) - Tue Mar 17 2009, 02:34

      15. How much should a buyer’s broker commission be & at what point do they receive it?Asked Thu Mar 12 2009, 09:24 by Tl C - Home Buying in 11216 - 14 answers .
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      TI C,
      In answer to your question about whether you need an attorney..(and in response to "Options") I have re-read the current NYS real estate law (I don't know if has changed since I took my broker's course and later my advanced training at CBHK) and also the legal memoranda and I must agree that it appears that it is not absolutely necessary !(though it does say that without the forms approved by your local board and bar association it should be approved by both parties attorneys before signing)
      Also this may be a different case in Manhattan due to the complexities of purchasing a condo and/or a coop what with the due diligence the attorneys perform etc.. I sure would like some more opinions from other expert Manhattan and NYC brokers and or lawyers.. Paging Mitchell Hall and/or Michael Shapot? - Sun Mar 15 2009, 20:46

      TI C,
      Thanks for the feedback.. the agent should be listed under her first and last name (you do have to go to the "brokers" link). I hope things smoothly for you now going forward! Just an update on needing an attorney in New York to close on property in New York... I've posted a link to the NYS legal memoranda below on this. I suppose that in other NY counties perhaps a fill in the blanks contract is allowed but to my knowledge from my broker training and previous experience in NY county real estate brokerages and previous membership in REBNY and MANAR such a form is not approved for use in NY county..perhaps in Kings (Brooklyn) county it is? I would welcome any further information on this from NYC brokers..maybe it is a question for attorneys.. (FYI when I was an agent in Arizona I was trained in and authorized in preparing a contract and a lawyer was not a requirement in any stage of the process..which made it easy to close quickly!) - Sun Mar 15 2009, 15:29

      Ti C,
      Is this person a NYS licensed agent or broker? What they are saying to you sounds very odd! The buyer's broker in NYC is usually paid from a split of the commission agreed upon when the seller listed the home with the listing/selling agent/broker. Could it be that they are planning to show you "For sale by owner" homes that the seller won't pay a commission on or perhaps pre-foreclosures that can't or won't pay a commission? Check the website below to see if they are currently licensed. Please ask your agent to explain it to you in detail. Yes, you need an attorney not just to finalize your purchase but to go to contract. Please let the community know how this evolves and if you need any referrals please do not hesitate to ask! Good luck! - Sat Mar 14 2009, 15:54

      16. when is the right time to bring an agent?Asked Mon Feb 9 2009, 18:33 by Emilio Domin… - Home Buying in New York - 14 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Emilio, Here is a better link to yet another legal memoranda from the NYS Dos General Counsel that's called: " Be Wary of Dual Agency!" http://www.dos.state.ny.us/cnsl/dualagcy.html When an apartment is listed for sale with a real estate broker (who after listing the home will do things such as prepare and stage the property, take photos, advertise, place in multiple listing, screen and qualify buyers, show and hold open houses and probably many more things) a selling price and commission is decided upon between the seller and the broker.This commission is divided between the selling broker and the buying broker (unless it's sold by the selling broker which then benefits the seller, as that broker's loyalty is to the seller..) If someone want to go through the inherent dangers, time, hassle, work and heartache (in addition to fending the calls of the thousand of agents who will call a FSBO) that of course is their right...no one forces them to make that choice! Broker and agents have to undergo much (continuous) schooling and training in real estate, marketing, current laws, sales negotiating and also ethical training in addition to the years of experience they may bring. Again the choice is always up to the consumer! Attorneys can practice real estate and are entitled to a share of the commission if acting as brokers and indeed in NYS you must have an attorney to buy or sell real estate but most attorneys are only going to prepare contracts and review the financials etc. (called due diligence) they are not going to arrange showings, search, preview and research properties, provide comparables, advise on offers, “hold your hand" or even prepare the board package (without an extra charge). Anyone who has bought or sold real estate in NYS had to have used an attorney! PLEASE always have your OWN attorney do not "share" attorneys with the other party! By the way there are also laws against unlicensed real estate practitioner. - Thu Feb 12 2009, 08:39 .
      Emilio,Just to clarify things a bit, here are some excerpts from the NYS Department of State rules regarding agency relationships..(As it is a co-op there are no written disclosure requirements but to protect the consumer these are meant to be followed) The complete rules can be found towards the bottom of this page at
      SELLER's AGENT is an agent who is engaged by a seller to represent the seller’s interests. The seller’s agent does this by securing a buyer for the seller’s home at a price and on terms acceptable to the seller. A seller’s agent has, without limitation, the following fiduciary duties to the seller: reasonable care, undivided loyalty, confidentiality, full disclosure, obedience and duty to account. A seller’s agent does not represent the interests of the buyer. The obligations of a seller’s agent are also subject to any specific provisions set forth in an agreement between the agent and the seller. In dealings with the buyer, a seller’s agent should (a) exercise reasonable skill and care in performance of the agent’s duties; (b) deal honestly, fairly and in good faith; and (c) disclose all facts known to the agent materially affecting the value or desirability of property, except as otherwise provided by law.
      BUYER’S AGENT A buyer’s agent is an agent who is engaged by a buyer to represent the buyer’s interests. The buyer’s agent does this by negotiating the purchase of a home at a price and on terms acceptable to the buyer. A buyer’s agent has, without limitation, the following fiduciary duties to the buyer: reasonable care, undivided loyalty, confidentiality, full disclosure, obedience and duty to account. A buyer’s agent does not represent the interests of the seller. The obligations of a buyer’s agent are also subject to any specific provisions set forth in an agreement between the agent and the buyer. In dealings with the seller, a buyer’s agent should (a) exercise reasonable skill and care in performance of the agent’s duties; (b) deal honestly, fairly and in good faith; and (c) disclose all facts known to the agent materially affecting the buyer’s ability and/or willingness to perform a contract to acquire seller’s property that are not inconsistent with the agent’s fiduciary duties to the buyer.
      DUAL AGENT A real estate broker may represent both the buyer and the seller if both the buyer and seller give their informed consent in writing. In such a dual agency situation, the agent will not be able to provide the full range of fiduciary duties to the buyer and seller. The obligations of an agent are also subject to any specific provisions set forth in an agreement between the agent, and the buyer and seller. An agent acting as a dual agent must explain carefully to both the buyer and seller that the agent is acting for the other party as well. The agent should also explain the possible effects of dual representation, including that by consenting to the dual agency relationship the buyer and seller are giving up their right to undivided loyalty. A buyer or seller should carefully consider the possible consequences of a dual agency relationship before agreeing to such representation. - Wed Feb 11 2009, 09:51
      Please do not feel guilty! The seller's agent should not be pressuring you to not use a buyer's agent, quite the opposite! (Dual agency is frowned upon in NYS)It is definitely not too late and could be definitely to your advantage in many ways! As someone mentioned earlier it would be best to be pre qualified or approved and a buyer's agent can provide you with a list of reputable mortgage people, as well as a list of attorney's, if you don't have one already.(You will definitely need your own attorney to proceed with your purchase.) If you don't have anyone yet to represent you, please feel free to contact me. Good Luck!

      17. First time homebuyer - question Asked Sun Feb 8 2009, 12:35 by John - Home Buying in Queens - 10 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      John, I believe you might start the ball rolling simultaneously.. Researching on Trulia, calling around and/or meeting broker/agents in your area (also check out open houses) will give you feel for who you would like to represent you and they probably will be able to provide you with a list of reputable mortgage people...In all fairness to you and the agents it would be best to be pre-qualified before you start making appointments to see specific properties. Be aware that it is in your best interest that if you are going to be qualified by different lenders that you do it at the same time as having too many credit checks over a period of time can affect your credit decisions... - Wed Feb 11 2009, 21:44

      18. What is the difference between realtor and buyer’s exclusive agent? Who can be more beneficial to a buyer?
      Asked Mon Nov 24 2008, 18:04 by tshah29 - Home Buying - 5 answers .
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      tshah, A realtor can be a seller's agent/broker or a buyer's agent/broker. A realtor is a member of NAR , something that doesn't really apply to New York City as the main Real estate agent/broker's association is REBNY. Real estate agent and/or broker is the correct term ( a broker has more experience and training and/or is the head broker/manager) A listing/selling agent/broker is the person who gets the seller to list their house with the brokerage firm. In NYS the selling agent's loyalties are with the seller. A buyer agent/broker represents the buyer and is required to protect their interests and confidentiality,( they can also help you get pre-qualified and pre-approved,) will research and set up showings of all properties best suited to your needs and help you present offers, help you negotiate the best deal, prepare a board package if applicable and be there from start to finish to guide you and "hold your hand'...all at no added cost or cost to you! Many buyer brokers offer incentives and gifts at or after closing! The buyer broker is more beneficial to a buyer! - Mon Dec 1 2008, 07:52

      19. Who does pay for realtors? Asked Thu Nov 6 2008, 10:15 by Mike Gemba - Home Buying in 11351 - 20 answers
      olie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Frances, Thanks for the detailed info! BTW the best real estate brokers also have experience in fields like construction, retail, hospitality , business marketing, advertising, entertainment and other fields where they have garnered much experience in dealing with the public. To be good at helping consumers buy and sell real estate today you don't need academic degrees or training you need solid real estate law and ethical training, good search/computer skills, good business sense and experience and good people skills. We are professionals in a business field, not a medical or legal field! - Thu Nov 27 2008, 13:12
      Mike, Just wanted to add that when I represent someone in their purchase as their buyer- there is no charge to them and no added cost at all but actually a large savings due to my knowledge and skills for searching for the ideal home, comparing value, negotiating and also the generous incentives/rebates that I offer after closing, if you choose me to be your buyer broker! - Thu Nov 27 2008, 09:45
      Mike, The commission amount is agreed to when the seller signs the listing contract. Buying a home without the help of a professional or one that isn't listed with a broker can be done but it is like looking for a needle in a haystack (It's actually hard & labor intensive work for us as well). We as agents/brokers have to protect the best interests of whomever we represent. we are guides and protectors and hand holders and more. As buyer brokers we find and screen the buyers and pre-qualify them and accompany them when we show listed homes help negotiate a purchase price and much more.. - Sat Nov 8 2008, 13:19

      20. I have an accepted offer on a Manhattan coop (w/o the services of a real estate broker) what're the next step?
      Asked Tue Nov 25 2008, 18:30 by Thomas Moore - Home Buying in New York - 7 answers Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Thomas, You need an experienced in NYC real estate attorney to prepare your contract and do the due diligence on the building. (Please let me know if you would like a list of attorneys) In New York only an accepted contract is binding. I f it's a sponsor unit you should not need much of a board package but still may have to submit some info with your application. Usually the buyer's broker prepares the board package though there are some attorney/brokers who can also help you with that.
      Please tell anyone you know interested in buying New York City about my services as a buyer broker (at no added cost) and with actual savings to the buyer due to my negotiating skills and generous (at closing) incentives/ rebates - Wed Nov 26 2008, 12:10 .

      21. Can someone please explain this buyer agent thing to me please and why any buyer would want to do it?
      Asked Mon Nov 24 2008, 11:50 by Carrie - Home Buying in Philadelphia - 40 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Carrie, Once again in response to Asher Smith, I f you look at my post you will see that I have quoted NY State Law (and here is a link: http://www.dos.state.ny.us/lcns/lawbooks/re-law.html What I've said is based on my previous experience as both a consumer/buyer and as an agent and broker! The agent and/or broker who is licensed under a broker(brokerage) has no absolutely no authority to adjust their commission, as the listing belongs to the brokerage company! If you read my post again you will see what I am talking about and that I am saying that it's much more likely that a buyer- broker will be able to reduce the buyer side commission if allowed by the main broker and (by the law in their state) A small company such as my own is in a better position to make the deal go through if necessary and I have myself taken less commission, in the past in Arizona as the buyer-agent so that the buyer was able to get the home he wanted but the seller agent did not help at all, as a matter of fact they never presented the offer! I myself have gripes with the way some agents, do business such as not presenting all offers or advertising or posting on the web & the mls expired or sold listings or misleading-leading listings and am constantly reporting such to Trulia and elsewhere.Happy Thanksgiving all! Tue Nov 25 2008, Carrie, I have to answer Asher Smith here.. First of all what makes you think a selling agent is going to make their commission part of the negotiation? Not likely! First of all if you are dealing directly with the selling agent/broker they are the only person party to the negotiation..they are obliged to bring all offers to the seller (but in my experience many don't and sometimes the buyer broker has to do something) in addition they are not obliged to tell the seller "the buyer is saying I should reduce my commission as part of their offer!) As they "own" the listing and (the agreed upon at signing) full commission if you (who is demanding they lower their commission) doesn't buy the home they are counting on that someone else will!! Also the brokerage has invested a lot of money advertising & marketing the property (and usually gets half of either the seller's commission or both) so the head broker/manager (who has the final say!) never allows the commission to be reduced either! You actually have a better chance getting a break from the buyer's broker who can give you closing gift. - Tue Nov 25 2008, 05:29
      Carrie, The buyer agent / broker works for you and will look for and show you homes that meet your needs (that may be listed by many different brokerages also they can protect your interest, by keeping your info confidential and help you negotiate the best price and more..
      In New York an agency form is not required for coops or condos according to NYS Real Estate Law: §443 f. “Residential real property” means real property improved by a one-to-four family dwelling used or occupied, or intended to be used or occupied, wholly or partly, as the home or residence of one or more persons, but shall not refer to (i) unimproved real property upon which such dwellings are to be constructed or (ii) condominium or cooperative apartments in a building containing more than four units. Here is their definition of a seller's agent and a buyer's agent:
      SELLER'S AGENT A seller's agent is an agent who is engaged by a seller to represent the seller's interests. The seller's agent does this by securing a buyer for the seller's home at a price and on terms acceptable to the seller. A seller's agent has, without limitation, the following fiduciary duties to the seller: reasonable care, undivided loyalty, confidentiality, full disclosure, obedience and duty to account. A seller's agent does not represent the interests of the buyer. The obligations of a seller's agent are also subject to any specific provisions set forth in an agreement between the agent and the seller. In dealings with the buyer, a seller's agent should (a) exercise reasonable skill and care in performance of the agent's duties; (b) deal honestly, fairly and in good faith; and (c) disclose all facts known to the agent materially affecting the value or desirability of property, except as otherwise provided by law.
      BUYER'S AGENT A buyer's agent is an agent who is engaged by a buyer to represent the buyer's interests. The buyer's agent does this by negotiating the purchase of a home at a price and on terms acceptable to the buyer. A buyer's agent has, without limitation, the following fiduciary duties to the buyer: reasonable care, undivided loyalty, confidentiality, full disclosure, obedience and duty to account. A buyer's agent does not represent the interests of the seller. The obligations of a buyer's agent are also subject to any specific provisions set forth in an agreement between the agent and the buyer. In dealings with the seller, a buyer's agent should (a) exercise reasonable skill and care in performance of the agent's duties; (b) deal honestly, fairly and in good faith; and (c) disclose all facts known to the agent materially affecting the buyer's ability and/or willingness to perform a contract to acquire seller's property that are not inconsistent with the agent's fiduciary duties to the buyer. http://www.dos.state.ny.us/lcns/lawbooks/re-law.html
      I hope this helps! Please let me know if I can help you or yours buy a home in NYC at no added cost or any cost to you! - Mon Nov 24 2008, 13:03 .

      22. As a consumer in NY - Would you use a Buyers agent? Why or why not? Asked Wed May 16 2007, 09:04 by Christine - General Area in 10001 - 12 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Christine, Definitely, By using an exclusive buyer's agent/broker you will be shown homes that suit your needs and wants not just a selling agent's own listings or their company’s. There is (usually) no added cost to be represented by a buyer broker, and you might actually save money, so why not? - Fri Nov 21 2008, 21:05

      23. I'm unhappy with the agent who showed me the home I just put an offer on and I think I can get a better deal if I deal directly with the seller or at least the listing agent? Asked Sun Oct 12 2008, 06:07 by 747tech - Home Buying in 11375 - 16 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      747, The homeowner is not affected by who sells you the home as the commission is negotiated before the property is listed for sale. The commission will not likely change as it's unlikely the listing agent's broker will allow it, actually you would have had a better chance of the buyer's agent taking less commission, if it came to it, as they have not invested in advertising the property etc. To be properly represented it would be in your best interest to have a designated buyer's agent! The agent who showed you the home will probably still get the same commission (as they were the procuring cause) if you deal with the listing agent (though there may be a fight) and meanwhile you will not have the service, buffer and protection that an agent will bring you, as the listing agent's main loyalty is to the seller and himself, so you have lost any negotiating edge, that you might have had, as now the seller may have access to information that will be hard to not disclose to them if you are in direct contact. In any case you will need a NY real estate attorney to write a contract, as binders and offers are not binding in NY State until you go to contract. As you say " they have to put food on the table too!" ..what about the agent who found you the home? - Sun Oct 12 2008, 15:18

      24. With the market the way it is today, is it a good time to buy a home?Asked Tue Sep 30 2008, 12:07 by Jayzel - Home Buying in Queens - 12 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Jayzel, I believe it is a very good time as long as you can afford it, love the home and make a wise investment! My grandfather Isaac Muss (who started from scratch when he came to this country) was a major innovator and builder in Brooklyn. During the Depression he would often say (when asked if he wasn't crazy!) "There are always so many children born each year, and they'll always need homes! " - Sat Oct 4 2008, 14:52

      25. First Time Home Buyer, Should I get an Agent? Asked Mon Apr 21 2008, 17:41 by Saad - Home Buying in Brooklyn - 16 answers .
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Saad, There are usually no fees that you would have to incur as the agent gets a share of the commission that the seller pays.. Especially since you are a first time buyer you will benefit from having someone in your corner who knows the ropes.. they will help you negotiate, find and arrange for you to view suitable homes, prepare a board package if needed and much more! In New York you will have to engage the services of a lawyer to prepare a contract, when you are ready to make a serious offer. - Sun Sep 14 2008, 01:44

      26. Buyers agent or not?Asked Wed Jun 4 2008, 14:57 by Geir - Home Buying in Queens - 11 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Geir, A buyer broker specializes in representing buyers...The (agent and/or broker) is usually paid half of the commission that the seller pays. There are different ways to be represented and this will need to be disclosed by an agency agreement at the beginning of your agreeing to use this person, if it's:( a one-to-four family dwelling used or occupied, or intended to be used or occupied, wholly or partly) but not if it's unimproved real property upon which such dwellings are to be constructed or (ii) condominium or cooperative apartments in a building containing more than four units. Check out these links for info: http://www.dos.state.ny.us/lcns/realest.html#disclosure http://www.dos.state.ny.us/lcns/realestate/1736.htm
      A buyer broker will also often ask you to sign something agreeing that if you or members of your family buy a home that the agent shows you, that they are entitled to the commission or an amount equal to the commission, if you should later buy the home they showed you first through another agent. Having a dedicated buyer's agent can help you as they will be focused on helping you find a home of your dreams and means; also they can be helpful in negotiating. Good luck! Jolie - Mon Sep 1 2008, 11:40

      27. How to find a real estate agent? Asked Mon Sep 1 2008, 04:40 by Paul Jones - Home Buying in New York - 12 answers
      Jolie Muss Exclusive Buyer's Broker answered:
      Richard, Your profile says homebuyer. in that case finding an independent owner/ broker who is available, reliable and experienced and who specializes in working with buyers would be a great choice! You can be sure that you will see the whole gamut of properties, not only the mls listings ,the in-office listings or the agent's own listings. Of course that they are an expert in your preferred neighborhood would be important as well.  I think you've already found a great way to find a real estate agent, right here at Trulia! Call me as soon as you are ready to find and purchase a home in Manhattan.. Jolie Owner /Broker Jolie Muss Licensed Real Estate Broker Mon Sep 1 2008, 08:42

      Jolie Muss
      The Upper West Side's Buyer's Broker
      Licensed Real Estate Broker & Brokerage
      Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10023
      Office: 212 721-3301 Email: jolie@joliemuss.com
      Trulia: http://trulia.com/profile/jolie

      ©2008. 2009, 2010 Jolie Muss
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