Most agents are honest but is is very tough to represent both sides neutrally.
Also, not all listing agents are going to give up any of their commission and even those who do, at best would probably only give up 1% since they have to do twice the work to close the deal. So, for example, on a $500,000 purchase price you would save $5,000. This financed over 30 years, let's say at 5% would equal around an extra $35 a month.
Is it worth giving up your own representation for that amount, especially since your own agent might be able to negotiation better terms for you.
Just my 2 cents.
I'm sorry to say this but the commission paid to the agent or agents is in the listing contract prior to the house being put up for sale. So where is the saving?? All your doing is helping the listing agent get both sides of the commission and giving up right to be represented. A buyers agent usually costs you as a buyer nothing and gets someone working for you. There is the savings.
As far as how we handle it if were are in a dual agency situation, we are obligated to be neutral. However, it has to be agreed upon ahead of time by everyone involved.
Experience shows, in a situation like this, you can't get both sides the best deal. The seller wants the most money, fastest close, shortest contingency period, and does not want to make any repairs. The buyer wants to pay the least amount possible, have a long enough escrow to satisfy themselves about the property and their loan, wants their contingency periods to run right up until closing and wants the seller to pay to fix all the problems with the house so they can just move in and start enjoying.
Find yourself an agent who will look out for your best interest. Find an agent who is like a pit bull. Someone who won't let go until they have negotiated the best terms for you. Find someone who will treat your money as if it were their own. Someone to help you make wise, well informed decisions about the give and take in the transaction. And when we hit any bumps in the road (I mean transaction) make sure to have a great negotiator/navigator on your team who will find a way over them, around them or through them for you. You often won't even know about a problem until it is solved. Finding an agent who protects you like this and who you enjoy working with will be well worth it. This will make buying your new home fun and an epic adventure. Dare to Dream.
Shel-lee Davis, QSCÂ®
Certified Distressed Property Expert â€“ CDPEÂ®
Short Sale & Foreclosure Resource â€“ SFRÂ®
Certified HAFA Specialist â€“ CHSÂ®
Your Real Estate Consultant for Life
RE/MAX Palos Verdes Realty
As a buyer, you may think that using the listing agent may give you an edge because they get dual commission that way, and some agents do think that way, but do you want that type of person representing you?
I always put my client's best interest first... if I have an offer that is better from a buyer's agent, I will recommend that one over the one that I procured that would result in dual representation.
There is far more to being a Buyer's agent than finding the property... negotiations, escrow, contingencies are complicated, even when things go well... then if things go sideways you need a good experienced advocate on YOUR side. Don't think that you will not need an agent only because you can find the property.
In other words, do you want an experienced expert advocate on your side 100% or do you want to share them with the seller?
Best of luck!
Ron Escobar, MBA
Broker& General Contractor
Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Credit Repair Advisor
The Michael Group - Dallas Business Journal Top Ranked Realtors
You as Buyer must know and disclose your representation in a transaction. Select:
1.You can come on your own, solo; listing agent get full commission but owes no fiduciary duty to you, only to Seller.
2.Request listing agent to represent you; listing agent get full commission and owes fiduciary duty to you as Buyer and Seller. The question here is who gets a fair deal?
3.Get your own Buyer's agent to represent you; full commission is split between listing agent and selling agent. You as Buyer get the Utmost fiduciary duty from your selling agent or Buyer's agent representation.
4.Get your real estate attornye to represent you; same as #3 above but you must pay your attorney any other attorney fees.
Number 3 above is highly recommended.
Let me know if I can be of help in your real estate purchase.
There is a conflict of interest when an agent represents both sides. I would look at it like Jane Peters does below. Put it into perspective by looking at how much money you "might" get off the purchase price.
Is it worth it to you for $5,000 to not have your best interests fought for fairly? I mean if you needed a lawyer for a legal battle would you choose to save $5,000 if you could have the other side's lawyer represent you?
One thing that I've noticed is that a lot of listing agents approach buyers at open houses and tell them that they will get a better deal for them if they work with them as opposed to their own agent. This is rarely true. And if it is, I go back to how much better is the deal, and is it worth it to not have your own representation?
Best of luck to you and happy house hunting!
WHY YOU NEED BUYER'S REPERSENTATION MORE THAN EVER
Buyers often fail to remember that the listing agent works for the seller FIRST. He/she has a contracted pre-established relationship with the seller. They probably know the names of their kids. They have already impressed upon the seller how they will get them the most money possible. I liken the buyer in that situation to a mistress. The listing agent is already married to the seller. Someone gets first fruits, someone gets what's left. Not to say that listing agents can't back pedal and take a non-bias role, but it can be tricky.
Please consider using your own representation.
Andi Grant, RealtorÂ®
First Time Home Buyer Specialist
Start Your Los Angeles Home Search:
First of you have to understand how the payment of commission process works. The commission agreement is between the seller and the listing broker (listing agent). So the seller signs a binding contract with the listing broker stating that when they sell the property, they will pay them a commission (lately mostly 5%). So contractually, that 5% commission will be paid to the listing broker whether they represent the seller only or both the seller and the buyer. The difference is that if the listing broker only represents the seller and the buyer is presented by their own agent, the listing broker will have to share that commission with your agent (2.5% each), but if the listing broker represents both parties they get to keep the entire 5% commission. So the only one who wins here, is the listing broker who pockets the whole 5%! Does that mean that the seller is going to lower his or her price? Not at all, because either way they are paying the same amount of commission. Even if the listing broker has a deal with the seller to discount him/her 1% if he represents both sides, that's all that means, it doesn't mean that the seller will sell you the property at a lower price! Either way, in the end, the seller will have to pay commission regardless of double representation or not and bottom line, they want their price!
Second aspect of your question and in my opinion the most important one, is how will you be fairly represented if the agent represents both sides? What do you think?....Trust me, I have sold over 180 properties in my career and it is very rare that a transaction goes entirely smoothly...At first, everybody is always very friendly but as the transaction progresses and deeper negotiations begins, things can get tensed and when that happens, how do you think the agent representing both sides is going to handle the situation? His original contract is with the seller, not with you...If he looses you as a buyer, he will still have his listing contract with the seller, which means you are replaceable, expandable...sorry...
So in conclusion, if you have the opportunity to have a professional represent you FOR FREE and defend your interests and the house won't cost you anymore, why wouldn't you have your own agent represent you?
I have this answers your question. I represent a lot of buyers, I am a very dedicated agent, always looking for a win win transaction and I negotiate the best deal possible for my buyers. Call me if you would like to discuss your project further.
I think it serves you best to have your own agent who is aware of your needs and concerns, and who can really be your advocate to get you the best possible deal on the house you want.
Talk to your friends and relatives. I am sure they can recommend an agent who they like and work well with. Interview at least 2 to find an agent you feel comfortable with. An agent can help you with all aspects of finding a home, nit just writing a contract. A good agent will become part of your team, looking out for your needs, and making sure you are not taken advantage of.
The conflict lies in how to best represent BOTH clients to the best of your ability and in conforming with Agency Standards (and the law) when attempting to represent both parties. How do you handle confidential information told to you by one party, when you owe an equal duty of disclosure to BOTH parties? Therein lies the rub.
For my money, no pun intended, I would get an Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR) to represent me. It costs you NOTHING, and you have someone whose job it is to represent YOUR BEST INTERESTS, not the seller's.
The Bremner Group at Coldwell Banker
REALTOR, 00588885, ABR, CDPE, eAgent, CSP, SFR, HRC, CRE
(O) 310-571-1364 DIRECT
Accredited Buyer Representative|Certified Distressed Property Expert |Pre-Foreclosure Specialist Certified
I want you to know that I appreciate any referrals from friends and associates who may be in the market to buy or sell real estate. You can count on me giving them the same high-quality service I provide to all of my clients.
As a seller's agent I can not disclose the seller's bottom line, so if you think you're going to have an advantage using the seller's agent you will not.
The buyer does not pay commission. The commission comes out of the seller's proceeds, thus as a buyer it should not matter to you about the commission.
I will usually refer the buyer to another agent, so that there is no hint of impropriety. I want both sides to feel comfortable with the transaction.
Call me directly and I can assist you further.
In is in your best interest to have your own agent represent you. Having the seller's agent represent you will not save you commission costs as the seller pays those costs. The seller's agent is just that- the seller's agent and has a fiduciary responsiblity to the seller first. You need someone that is looking you for your best interest and will lead you thru the transaction to protect you, education you and fight for you.
Sotheby's International Realty
I personally don't practice dual agency for a multitude of reasons. I would advise you to seek out an agent to represent your best interest. It is so important to have someone on your side to offer advice,negotiate on your behalf, and guide you through a smooth and successful transaction. If you are looking for a deal, hire a skilled negotiator. :)
Wishing you the best,
Kenya Costa ABR,SFR
Keller Williams Realty
Drawbacks: you don't have anyone on your side. The listing agent has a fiduciary duty to the seller first...and then you. And, since the seller pays the commission, not the buyer, you wouldn't be saving any money on commission by using the listing agent.
Please do yourself a favor and find an agent who you can trust to help you through the entire real estate process. One who will work hard on your behalf to get you the best deal and one who will be there for you even after escrow closes. Having an agent on your side is how you can save the most money.
Personally, I don't like to handle both sides. It can get a little sticky. If I have a listing and a buyer wants to write an offer on my listing, I will refer the buyer out to another excellent agent in my office so both the buyer and the seller are represented equally.
The drawbacks to dual agency(although legal in the state of California) would be that it is difficult to represent both the needs and desires of the seller, as well as the buyer. It's not hard to imagine.The seller's agent's job is to get the highest price for that property...how could that benefit you as the buyer?
It costs nothing to retain a buyer agent to represent you, and it is in your best interest to do so. You won't save a single penny going without one.
So the question is..why Not use a buyer agent?
Everything is negotiable and must be in writing. If you want a discounted commission rate from your agent if they represent both buyer and seller, then it must be in the listing agreement, in writing.
In most cases, with reputable real estate companies, most managers will want to see the listing agreement and also the purchase contract to review and make sure there are no conflicts and that everything is being done upfront, and with integrity. Remember that the agent has a fiduciary relationship with whom ever they represent.
The bottom line is that what ever offer is accepted, be the Buyer being represented by the listing agent or another agent, the listing agent must do what is in the best interest of the Client/Seller.
In your case, it would be in your best interest to have an agent represent you to make sure your interests are being handled in a professional way.
All the best,
Kat Becker, Agent
Prudential California Realty
An Agent who represents both Seller and Buyer may only look at the "end product" which would be double comssion for themself...and do and say "whatever it takes" to close the deal. An Agent/Broker with "integrity" will provided fully disclosure on the property and any possible concerns for both seller and buyer. So...if you think you want to do this try to find out as much information about the agent before you make a contract with them.
Jack Gillis, M.B.A., J.D.
Jack Gillis Realty Advisors
Nathan Grace Real Estate, Broker
5619 Dyer Street | Suite 100
Dallas, TX 75206
A seller tells his/her listing agent what price, terms, etc he/she would like to have and that info is publicized usually in the MLS as well as other advertising. The agent should be advising their client whether buyer or seller what comparable properties are selling for and listing for. This information is based on recent sales. It is what it is, for both seller and buyer. That doesn't mean the seller will listen or buyer will listen. Sometimes Sellers need to sell quickly and will accept a very low offer. Their listing agent has a much better feel for this than a buyers agent looking at the given info on a sheet of paper. Other times it may be the opposite. The seller is just testing the water and is very firm on price/terms, your buyers agent can "fight for you" all they want but the seller still wants what they want. The listing agent has a lot more insight into what reasonable offer will work instead of guessing like a buyers agent would.
I believe that we as agents are just the middle men giving our clients the information so that they, the client, can make an informed decision. Whether I am representing seller, buyer or both it is not for me to decide what they want to offer or take. I just give them all the info. I ask buyers the questions that make them decide if this property is the right one for them whether it is my listing or someone elses.
I would like to equate the purchase negotiation to a divorce, You can have two lawyers bickering back and forth on who will get the couch or whatever, or you can have one mediation minded attorney represent both helping each give a little but get a happier resolution without all that bickering and bad feelings. Cut to the point faster and easier and more likely all parties will end up happier. After all a seller wants to sell and a buyer wants to buy, right? My job is to make the negotiation and transaction as smooth as possible while helping my clients get what is most important to them.
Now, even after saying all that, I think you will probably be better off finding ONE agent to represent you and help you look for properties and negotiate on your behalf. Why? Because you want to be sure they are competant and can take care of you properly. So, you should develop a relationship. You should get to know, like and trust your agent. You need to feel they would be able to pick up the ball if it gets dropped. They should be able to explain the process and what is likely to happen and what is normal and customary as well as not. Look for an experienced agent, get referrals, see if you "click" together. Are they asking you the questions before you ask yourself on why this home will or won't work for you? Are they helpful or just yes men? Don't let anyone talk you into anything. Your agent should be your partner and advisor. Use someone you think you want to trust.
Lastly, you may find your agent at an open house and they may end up representing both sides if you fall in love with that house. And that is OK. Or not. There are a million of us all around you...Tell a few people you are looking for an agent and they may give you a great one or you could always call one of the many agents who answered your question (me, me, ME!). It is OK to interview agents or even change if you are not happy while you are developing a relationship and looking (not in the middle of a transaction in which case you should call their broker if you are not happy).
This is a service business and you should get the service you want from your agent.
If you would like to call me, text me, or email me, I'll be happy to help you on the Westside of Los Angeles and surrounding areas.
Sunset Palms Real Estate, Inc.
cell (909) 936-0000