Home Buying in Atlanta>Question Details

krishna.seet…, Home Buyer in Atlanta, GA

Buying a new home development in Atlanta GA, Can I ask my buyers agent to share commission with me?

Asked by krishna.seetharam, Atlanta, GA Mon Jan 7, 2013

We are looking to buy a new home in a development that is being built in Atlanta. We already have researched the properties and have shorlisted a few. I wanted to get a buys agent to help me review the contract papers and if possible negotiate the sale price. In this scnario, can I ask the agent to share his/her commiccion with me, as the work I am asking the agen to do is minimal. If yes, what is the normal % that I ask for. The property value is b/w 500 - 550K.

Help the community by answering this question:


Perhaps you can also ask the developer to give you some of his pay, and maybe the taxi driver that takes you there (since you opened your own door), and the closing agent, and the attorney, and the grocer and the baker. Take a look at the average annual income of realtors and you will realize that their commissions are not as grandiose (spread over a whole year) as they may seem...
4 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Licensed Real Estate Agents in Georgia are not allowed to share commissions with their Buyers. It is best to have full service Buyers representation throughout the process to ensure attention and guidance. Let me know if I can assist you in your new home purchase. Please call me at your convenience to discuss further at 404-358-4123.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Sure, you can do that as long as you, yourself are a GA licensed Real Estate Agent. If not, it is illegal for anyone who is not licensed to earn commission in a real estate transaction.

Rodney Mason, NMLS #151088
Sr Loan Officer
Prospect Mortgage
825 Juniper St NE, Atlanta, GA 30308
Office: (404) 591-2453
Apply Online at http://www.rodneymason.com
Licensed in Alabama & Georgia with over a decade of lending experience.

Prospect Mortgage offers a full selection of mortgage programs including:
Conventional | FHA | FHA 580-639 FICO | FHA 203K Renovation (Streamline & Consultant) | HomePath® | HomePath® Renovation | HomeStyle® Renovation | VA | USDA | GA Dream | Jumbo Financing.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Would you share your salary with your boss? If you would, then yes, if you would not, why would you ask someone else to?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 16, 2014
Jules - don't be a tool. Answer current questions from 2014 instead of diggin' up fossils and actin' da fool...
Web Reference: http://intowninsider.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 16, 2014
Yes you can, some will and some will not. If your agent says no please keep this in mind. Most Realtors are paid on commission and selling real estate is a business. For an agent to stay in business they must make a profit just like any other business that keeps the doors open. Just like you they go to work to support themselves and their families.
Even if your agent only shows you three or four homes and you buy one with a quick closing they will have somebody else that will look at 50 and not buy anything. At least I have had my fair share of those that I think are going to buy something any day and never do. The agent usually pays all expenses driving buyers all over town, pays advertising, mls fees errors & emissions insurance. The broker gets a cut of the commission or the agent pays transaction fees for each sell. Then there are all the office supplies, computers, huge cell phone bills and so on.
If you ask for 1% cash back and the agent is paid only 2.5 or 3% you are taking 1/3rd or more of their pay before expenses. Can you afford to give someone 1/3rd of your gross pay for the privilege of working with them? If you were one of the best in your field would you work for 1/3rd less than the average person in your field?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 13, 2013
ONCE MORE THE ANSWER TO YOUR QUESTION IS YES,YES ,YES AND YES. Now finding one who will is another matter. Look at the answers you are getting. Would you want to work with any of these agents? There are agents who will be willing to share a part of their commission with you. You would have to be that agent's client.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
Silas--not sure why you are throwing other agents under the bus--don't you think we deserve to be fairly compensated? Why wouldn't she want to work with a hard-working, professional agent that knows what they're doing? Many agents that offer to split commission do so because that's the only way they can get a client...
Flag Sun Jan 13, 2013
For some reason some buyers have the notion that realtors should share their commission when purchasing a home with them and not realizing this is their job. This is how they make a living for themselves and their family just like any other working person. What a realtor makes in commission should not be factor as to whether you choose them as a realtor or whether they can share their commission with them. Choosing a realtor should be based on their professional skills and knowledge. Sure a realtor can offer a gift to show their appreciation to the buyer when working with them, but it is not legal for a realtor to give money to a buyer unless they are a realtor. Ask yourself how you would feel if your boss asked you to share your paycheck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Question: How would you feel if your boss were to say to you: "you know that last project you worked on was pretty easy--and we brought the client to you. Do you mind if we just give you half your salary this month?"

As the others have said, the work just BEGINS with the selection of a home. A good agent will make sure that you SHOULD be buying in that communiity (is it a financially solvent community? Does future appreciation/resale look good? Does the builder have a good reputation?). They will then help you find a good home inspector to do an independent home inspection (yes even on new homes!), help you negotiate any items that come up, deal with any appraisal issues if they arise, etc., etc...

I once listed a home for someone that bragged that he didn't use a buyer's agent when he bought so he got a better deal out of the listing agent. I tried not to say "I told you so" when he house wouldn't sell because of a large drainage culvert located at the back of his property. A good sellers agent would have have warned him not to buy that particular home--or at least made him aware him of its affect on resale and negotiated more money off the sale.

Using an agent can save you thousands of dollars, future lawsuits, etc. We think of things that could happen that you may never even dream of. Find a good one, use them, and don't begrudge them their commission. We work hard for the money--
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
So if person goes to a doctor with the flu does the doctor charge less because the patient tells him he has the flu?

Your agent should be doing more than writing the contract - they should:

1. research trends in the area and brief you on that
2. research the community to see how it's been and projected to be
3. research the contract to ensure that your interests are protected - those new construction contracts are heavily skewed to the builder
4. oversee the process and be invloved as/if needed
5. ensure that everything in the contract is upheld and the finished product is satisfactory

and most important - leverage the fact that they can influence the builder's reputation by speaking with other agents. Builders rely on agents to bring them business - a good experience means good reviews which means good business for the builder.

Now, if you want me to give you part of my commission, what part of my responsibility would you like me to no do? You don't pay for representation, why would you expect a kickback? If you think the work is minimal then you should just go in unrepresented and ask the builder's agetn for the kickback, don't waste your agent's time.
Web Reference: http://www.hmtatlanta.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
A buyer agent can actually give what is called a buyer credit. It is legal as long as it is reflected on the HUD. If I do this it is normally only when this particular buyer had just listed and sold their home with me.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 10, 2015
A buyer agent can actually give what is called a buyer credit. It is legal as long as it is reflected on the HUD.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 10, 2015
It is illegal, completely against the law for any agent in georgia to pay anyone. The agent is bound by laws and brokerage agreements. Commissions are paid to the broker and the agent is paid through the broker. Buyers should recognize the commission will be paid whether it's spilt between listing agent and buyers agent OR just one agent. As a buyer it's always better to have someone working on your behalf with integrity and loyalty.
Web Reference: http://lrealty411.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 6, 2015
I think this is a bad idea. For one it is unethical to ask someone to do a job for you and then in turn want some of their commissions they worked for. Would you give a client of yours some of your paycheck because they did business with you?

I would just get a good agent and have them advise you on the best way to make money on the type of property you want and let them do their job and let them get paid for doing their job. And you make money as the investor that gets a good deal because you have a good agent. New homes are not always the best deal.

Best Regards,
Robert Adams
The Adams Team at
Rothwell Gornt Companies
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 16, 2014
You can ask for anything you want, some will agree, some won't. Pick the ones that will, obviously. Ignore the sob stories here about agents and their personal woes. It's unethical and unprofessional for them to put that upon you. If they don't like it or can't deal then they should look for a different profession.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 16, 2014
Sorry to say i have yet to find a hard-working, professional agent that is looking out for my best interests as a buyer. Based on the experiences of the past year, I do not feel that I can trust anyone to look out for my interests. From a buyers perspective, it is very clear that closing a sale and getting paid is the primary goal of the agent, and not the best interests of the buyer. It is palpable and does not instill confidence in the home buying process. In fact, it is the ultimate deal killer. If a buyer doesn't know that you are on their side, the purchase is difficult, if not over. i have witnessed the feigning of 'multiple offers' to jack up the price of a home and have appraisal contingencies dropped. I have witnessed stalling and no information given to questions asked during due diligence. i could go on and on. i had an agent scream at me because I would not put in a bid high enough to win the house; higher than we could afford. He said, this is what it will take to get this house. i said we cannot go that high. Yelled and screamed at me, saying this is why I don't have a house yet. No joke. craziness. Two agents behaved in that way. I'm sure there are more out there. Why do you suppose so many try to buy and sell on their own? Information abounds about unethical practices in real estate. It's a buyer beware situation.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 24, 2013
I want to apologize on behalf of the horrible real estate agents you have had the misfortune to deal with. I can assure you, knowing myself and many great agents that I work with everyday--the vast majority of us are NOT like this--we are the hardest-working people I know! We often put heart and soul into a sale that doesn't work out --and yes, that's just part of our job. I am in this business for life and have NEVER tried to talk anyone into buying a house; in fact, I've had to talk people OUT of buying a house that would have ended up being a bad investment in the long run. I don't ever need a commission check at the expense of my integrity and ethics.

I'm a successful realtor, but even if I weren't, I would sooner run up my credit cards than ever do a transaction because I needed the money. Real estate is my passion and my calling,, and I try to protect my clients like a mother lion would protect her cubs--as do most of us!
Flag Thu Jan 16, 2014
I do not believe it is in any violation of the law, but having representation can sometimes be priceless. If you have already completed negotiations and everything is complete then it is something to consider. But as always, remember that you get what you pay for, so if that home falls through or something gets complicated the agent might not be as willing to work for you. Make sure you are prequalified for a mortgage if you are seeking financing. You can see my Purchase Power Program at my link below. It would be very valuable to you in this situation.

Jeffrey Spatz
GMAC Mortgage
1170 Peachtree Street NE, suite 1200, office 1230
Atlanta, GA 30346
404 309 4936
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
YES, Go ahead and ask them, cause you are the only person that is having green paper. Tell them that you definitely going to buy that property and they do not have to look around to find another buyer. So without hesitation. go ahead with your opinion.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
NO, NO, NO, NO AND NO! That is just plain rude. I agree with Jim. People just don't go around asking people to give them some of their money - just to do business with them. It's dangerous and its tap dancing on the illegal borderline.

Unlike people who get a regular paycheck, that one deal may be the only compensation a realtor has made all year especially in today's market. Out of that we have to pay our company a good chunk, sometimes almost half when you include all the other fees; office fees, technology fees, website fees, GAMLS, FMLS, Realtor Board Fees, then our expenses including gas, transportation, lock box keys, printing and the taxes we have to pay on the money we get. We have to pay double insurance, and have no benefits, so the only perk we have is a half way decent commission when we get a good deal like a $550,000 +/- transaction.

The danger is, forgetting to disclose to all parties. And even if you disclose it - your realtors Broker may not allow it, or the seller may not allow it. So Silas is right but most lenders won't let you do it even if you want to. And if you do it under the table the Realtor would be in jeopardy of losing his or her license. Furthermore Georgia Real Estate Code may allow it as mentioned above but RESPA may not - and the Realtor could be in trouble. So, unless a realtor is as sharp as I am on Real estate law and RESPA - they best let you walk.

Furthermore, the problem with this is when you start asking Realtors to give you money for their business, its like blackmail. And if they accept, that is a sign of desperation, and thus the ethical line is questionable. What other unethical thing will this Realtor do? And you as a client would scare me. Because I would wonder about your ethics. Don't ask Realtors to share their paychecks no matter how "easy" you think their work is. It is not. It requires training at our expense, time and dedication - let us earn our money without our customers and clients coveting it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 13, 2013
Here's the issue with this: Let's first look at the costs of a Realtor in getting this deal to close. Aside from reputation on the line for doing something unethical, the Realtor has to pay taxes on the money he or she makes. The average commission percentage is 3% from either side. Commission then, would be $15,000 based on the $500k price. From that amount, the Realtor has to pay her expenses for being with a Broker. Let's use a low number like $1000 each month for rent, supplies, licenses, CE courses, on-line services, access fees etc. I'm not saying your Realtor is struggling, but many are. If your Realtor isn't selling much, this income will need to last till summer time and you probably won't see a dime of it. Let's move on.

So, that brings that amount to $14,000 ASSUMING the Realtor doesn't have to give half of the commission to the Broker. This is going to narrow your Realtor search to those who don't pay a percentage of their earnings.

In the state of Georgia, the Realtor will have to pay 31% in advance taxes (25% estimated federal and 6% state). That's $4340 in taxes that she has to pay, again, assuming this is the highest tax bracket she will hit this year. If she makes more money, then she will have to pay more in taxes on the money she made, which means you will get less up front. You'll want to ask your Realtor how much money he/she makes on average in order to figure out his/her tax bracket going into this deal. After the reduction of taxes in the lower tax bracket, we end up with $9660. The Realtor is now ready to split pay with you (usually about 1% is paid out). Let's use 1.5%, in case you get lucky. You will get $4830.

The Realtor is going to send you an IRS form 1099 for the cash that she paid you, again, depending on her tax bracket. You will have to claim this money as cash income. If you don't have the means to write this off, you will have incur a tax hit from the IRS for about $1500 and additional debt to the state of GA. If you can write off the 31% tax hit of the $4830 ($1497.30), then excellent! This of course, assumes you make no income and are at the lowest tax bracket applicable.

Based on the size loan, I'd guess you are in a higher tax bracket. We'll assume that you don't have a job and this is all the money in the world that you will receive this year.

When all is done after your research of the Realtor annual fees incurred, the Realtor's net profit from the Broker, the Realtor's tax bracket, the taxes incurred from the IRS (you'll probably want to create an LLC for a few hundred bucks to avoid potential future lawsuits since receiving commission may implicate you if anything goes wrong during or after the transaction), you'll be happy to know that you netted about $3000.

What you may want to do is go get your Realtor license yourself and use the 3% commission to get more closing costs paid, pay for repairs on the house, lower the price etc. Anyone of these fine people would probably be happy to steer you to someone who can help you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
The answer to your question is YES. No Georgia real estate laws would be broken and this is not a RESPA violation if your realtor give you part of his/her commission. Now finding one who is willing to do so is another matter.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Ms. Krisna,

Agents have laws and ethics we pride in, our professional services are governed thusly.

I applaude your hardwork but I would suggest you seek the services of a licensed buyers agent
as the development you have researched most likely has a sellers agent working for them

It would be my pleasure to assist you!

Edna Sledge
Bob Wood Realty of Atlanta
770 906 1222
email; integrity141@aol.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013

Everyting in real estate is negotiable. Buyer's agent can contribute towards your closing costs, home warranty, repairs or otherwise. The amount has to be discussed beteween you and your agent. Some times agents have to obtain permission from their brokers.

Feel free to give me a call so we can discuss it in greater details.

Best regards,

Veronika Barash, Realtor®,






678.230.4235 c

678.287.4800 o

404.410.6983 f

Keller Williams Realty Consultants
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
William that amount would be zero. You can't even give the buyer a $5 starbucks gift card according to the RESPA as it smacks of adversely influencing or swaying a buyer to make a purchase not of their own free will.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
How much is a Realtor or a Lawyer worth, if they help and protect you?
Would you ask the same question of the Lawyer?
You probably wouldn't have the audacity!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Flag Sun Nov 24, 2013
Looking for the house, is the easiest part. Doing contracts, reviewing contracts and negotiating a contract is the hardest part of the transaction Did you ask your agent about this upfront? Georgia Law is what will govern this type of transaction.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
As a smart and professional business person, did you discuss this with your agent before he/she agreed to help you? Oh, heck! Why bother with being up front and honest? Just spring it on the agent now. It will be worth it to see the look of dismay on the agent’s face when you ask them to share their income with you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Dear krishna.seetharam

Congrats on your decision to buy a home! I could be mistaken, but GA Real Estate law regulates how/what/how much money any Realtor can pay, as a referral, to a non-licensed person. Take into consideration that the buyer's agent will be taxed on any monies given to you as a gift or "refund".

It might be a better option to ask the buyer's agent to pay for an electric garage door opener, or maybe pay for the cost of an extended home warranty for you.

Hope this helps and congrats again on your impending home purchase!


William Bedgood
mid-century/modern enthusiast
Keller Williams Realty Intown Atlanta
621 North Ave. c-50 (behind Ponce City Market)
search here for your dream home:

...the greatest compliment you can offer me is the referral of your family and friends
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Somebody will do that for you - call around and quite a few of the 25000 licensees working in metro Atlanta will be glad to jump in and grease the palm...
Web Reference: Http://intowninsider.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
the work you are asking the agent to do is anything but minimal. Finding the house is the easiest part. You can ask anything but if you are working with an experienced, good agent, don't expect it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
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