If you find a house the fits your needs and you are a desirable tenant (good credit, references etc) and are not squabbling about monthly rent, you may be able to negotatiate to have the landlord pay the commission even if the listing states otherwise. Landlords often will start by pushing the commission to the tenant side, and then move to split or pick it up if necessary to move the inventory. A local agent can help from here.
Good luck to you,
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In Monmouth County our tax record system also include all legal documents relating to a property and that is where I find out this info. This might also apply to NY's online tax records. You may have to do some fishing around the site to find it.... more