Home Buying in Temecula>Question Details

temecman, Other/Just Looking in Temecula, CA

Looking to put offer on a short sale - should i use their agent or get my own?

Asked by temecman, Temecula, CA Mon Feb 13, 2012

Help the community by answering this question:


In CA you could use the listing agent, however, we recommend using your own agent whose fiduciary responsibility is to you alone.

Let us know if you have any questions, or need help -

Good luck!

Kevin McLaughlin, Broker / Owner
Berkshire West Realty
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Sorry for the double response, but I just had to add this gem.

Caller- "I need a pre-approval to buy a short sale.
Me - "No problem. Who is your Realtor?"
Caller- "I don't have one, I already found the property. Don't need one"
Me- "Are you comfortable with real estate law, legal contracts and negotiations?"
Caller- "The listing agent says they can help if needed"
Me- "Would you hire your wife's attorney to represent you in a divorce?"
Caller- "Do you have a Realtor you can recommend?"
Web Reference: http://homeloanartist.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 25, 2012
Part One; If you have already looked at the property with the listing agent, you may be obligated to put your offer in with them. You want to always have your own agent in place prior to looking at properties for the cleanest transaction.

Part Two; Contrary to many opinions here, we are a dual agency state which means that we can work with the Buyer and the Seller at the same time. There are many agents that can and will perform this function for you ethically and legally. I would argue that if this listing was one of the agents that responded...their advice might be different?

Part Three; The listing agent may not benefit nearly the way you think if they represent you in the purchase. A lot of the banks will reduce the agencies commission simply because they are doing both sides of the transaction. It's a lot of work either way so the Listing Agent might even prefer you get your own agent.

Part Four; Short sales are a ton of fun...Get ready for a wild ride!
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Hi Temecman, all great answers and hope you are working with your own buyers agent who is working in your best interest! Most of all be loyal to your agent, we work hard for you and we work for FREE until the transaction closes. How many people do you know who will work for free, while spending a lot of their own money to do it? Please use a Trulia agent, we work hard for you! Best wishes on your short sale purchase! Thanks!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Always always always have your own agent
In a short sale Have your own.
If you sue the listing agent on a short sale to represent you the Sellers lender has a high probablitiy to think there may be some sort of collusion.
Short sales depend upon a property selling in the open free market.
When the listing agent and buyers agent are one in the same,
the bank has second thoughts,
The buyer and or the seller may have second thoughts
It is just not a good idea to do it on a short sale or for that matter ANY sale.
"Dual agency" using the listing agency to represent the buyer as well, deals is where many problems arise.
Avoid them, Use your own buyers agent.
Do your Due Diligence and look up "Dual agency" on google.
In the interim, never have a listing agent show you a home or go to an open house. If you do, you may be bound to use the agent who showed you the property, thus involving yourself into a "Dual agency" situation.
By the way, Great question.
I wish you the best in your home search.

Harold Sharpe - Broker
So Cal Homes Realty
(951) 821-8211
California Department of Real Estate Broker License # 01312992
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Get your own. You want to have someone who is looking our for your interests and only yours
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
I agree with the others. You should definitely get an agent that is working for you rather then the seller. Short sales can be rather complex. So, having a buyers agent with short sale experience will be extremely beneficial to you.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Get your own. Definitely.

Hope that helps.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Burke, VA
Always go with your team that can go to Bat for you.
A listing agents first fiduciary duty is to the Seller with who he has signed the contract first in California.
Sure any agent has a fiduciary duty to treat both the Seller and Buyer, honestly and fairly, the challenge is there is always a conflict of interest

Imagine, you asking for a reduction in price of say $10-15k, when in fact the numbers are based on comparable provided by the listing agent to the seller.

Also, if the property is a short sale, it can quite complicated for you and your agent who is also the listing agent.

Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 25, 2012
Use an agent, but be sure to get one who knows what they are doing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 16, 2012
I recommend signing with a buyers agent for this. I would also recommend getting a short sale negotiator involved and getting a lawyer that has a good amount of short sales under his/her belt to make sure the transaction is as seamless as possible.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
I'll go ahead and sound like a broken record..."Get your own agent!"

Even on my own short sale listings, I refer buyers to another agent to work with.

Good luck!

Ray Wright
Certified Preforeclosure Specialist
Keller Williams Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 14, 2012
I agree with the others.. Get your own agent...
Please feel free to contact me at (909)731-7124 or email me at ludy@tarbell.com
I'll be glad to help you.

Thank you.
Ludy Ivonina.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Dear Temecman,

The best advice would be to be represented in the transaction by your own agent. It is true that the listing agent has feduciary duties to the seller unless they are a dual agent. Another point of note is to choose a buyers agent that has some training and experience in handling short sale offers. Any way that you go, you may want to keep looking for a house while your offer is in. Banks don't always approve the short sales, or sometimes the bank will continue to foreclose on the property. The only thing "short" about a short sale is the amount of money the bank receives to pay off the current owners loan. So please be patient!

If I can help you in any other way, please call or email.

Esther Smith, Realtor
CDPE, SFR, CHS (short sale training and certifications)
951-440-0765 dre# 01870234
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Hi Temecman,
If the listing agent is going to require you to write the offer with them, make sure the bank is allowing them to do so. What I have been hearing lately, the banks (short sale or REO) are cutting commissions for dual agency (When a agent represents both buyer and seller). If the listing agent tries to circumvent this, they will ask another agent to write the offer for them, might as well be your agent. I think that is a bad idea and wouldn't allow my name or my DRE# to be used in a transaction if I am not part of that transaction.
You would be better served by your own Realtor; someone who's putting your Best Interest first.
Let me know If I can in anyway. Best of Luck and don't forget, PATIENCE IS EVERYTHING IN A SHORT SALE TRANSACTION!
Thanks for using Trulia!
Realtor Ricki :)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Congrats on getting to the stage of writing an offer. I agree with all the answers below and would have your own agent represent you. If you have the listing agent write the offer for you this will create a dual agency situation. If push comes to shove, it will be very difficult for the listing agent to represent both parties fiduciarily.

Having an agent that is experienced with short sales will help, but understand that the buyer's agent will not have much say with the negotiations of the short sale process since the buyer's agent will represent the buyer and not the seller. Does this make sense to you?

Feel free to contact me If you'd like more information or want to dig into this question a little deeper.

All the best!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
I agree with the others.. Get your own agent... Do make sure that agent is well versed in the short sale process.. I am amazed at the number of agents who do not work short sales! You don't want to be their guinea pig! If you would like more info you can reach me at 951-377-4111
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
The listings agent's LEGAL role is to get his/her seller the highest and best offer.....among many other things.

How can the listing agent possibly help you get the best deal or protect your interests when they are trying to do do just the opposite?

How comfortable are you with real estate contract law?

If you want my opinion of a good agent in Temecula who can represent you, give me a call.
Web Reference: http://homeloanartist.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
I have many clients who have tried both options, going directly to the listing agent and employing their own buyer's agent. In my experience, there are some horrible listing agent who do not communicate effectively with other agents and even their own buyers. I hear complaints and their frustrations all the time.

On the other hand there are some really great listing agents. As a prospective buyer, you are unfortunately going into it blind unless you check out the listing agent for yourself. Having your own buyer's agent seems to be the best choice based on my many conversations with my clients. Their loyalties for one, are not divided and the feedback I get from my clients is they just fight harder for you.

FYI, if you are buying in Temecula, make sure you are pre-approved and have been schooled on the many great programs available. I have one program that requires no down payment in the city of Temecula. Let me know if you have any further questions.
Web Reference: http://www.AFN-Loans.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
There is no other answer than to get your own agent. Interview as many agent you need to find the best one that has experience and a personality you can work with. Your agent will most likely be around for awhile since buying a home these days can take several months. So pick someone you can tolerate to be around and communicates well with you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Temecman, like those before me, absolutely get an agent who represents you and only you. In this market you will be across the table from a bank and they have done this thousands of times.
The problem arises when what you want/need conflicts with what the bank wants/needs. The listing agent is bound by contract to represent the bank's interest. I did a blog post about about "bringing a knife to a gunfight", you can click on the link below.
Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Get an agent that will only have your best interest in mind.... think of it like a court trial, you would want your own attorney, right?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
Absolutely get your own, especially one who knows the short sale process throughly. Here's a little info on buying a short sale in Temecula.

Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012

Most Definately have an agent on your side to negotiate. The listing agent has the seller in mind. If you have any further questions feel free to contact me @ 951-609-5788

Visit http://www.johnwilsonhomes.com/short-sale.asp for more info...
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
get your own, no matter when, but especially on a short sale!

If you are unsure of where to start, Check out my blog:

Where to find and How to Choose a Great Buyers Agent:

0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 13, 2012
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