Home Buying in Boca Raton>Question Details

Walker, Home Buyer in Boca Raton, FL

Need a buyers agent to buy 1.8 mil home in Boca area. How to ensure the agent negotiate the lowest price?

Asked by Walker, Boca Raton, FL Sun Sep 18, 2011

Is there an incentive for the buyers agent for lowering the price ?

Help the community by answering this question:



Ah the negotiation, the art of the deal, the reason for the existence of any qualified Realtor®. What a great question and one that when I saw come through yesterday morning I was anxious to sink my teeth into and obligations caused me to delay my response.

I am first going to give you the same advice I give any buyer. The very best thing that you can do is find a professional Realtor@ to represent you and there are a few things I would tell you. First is to NOT sign a buyer's broker agreement with anyone. This is a form an agent will use to tie you up and ensure any transaction you make will only be through them. Find an agent who is happy to perform their services with the knowledge that if they do not properly meet your expectations they will lose your business. 

Second, NEVER call a listing agent about a home they have listed as their initial relationship with the seller will prevent you from working out the best deal. 

Finally, I would recommend that you interview at least three qualified agents in your area to assist you and select one who you feel will have your best interests as their primary goal.

As someone who works almost entirely as a buyers agent throughout Palm Beach County and has been building or selling real estate for a career that has spanned longer than I care to admit I can tell you there is no more important decision you can make when contemplating a real estate transaction than the professional you choose to represent you.

The person you choose will have a complete understanding of the market and the metrics that come in to play with any property. In Boca Raton, at this moment there are 403 single family homes actively for sale with list prices at $1M or above. Over the past 12 month there have been 148 sales of single family homes with a list price above $1M or in excess of a 32 month inventory based on 12 month sales. Over the past 6 months there have been 89 sales of single family homes or in excess of a 27 month inventory. Over three months there have been a total of 32 sales or in excess of a 37 month inventory. The point is inventory levels are very high and the market is constantly evolving. Many sellers still have 2005/2006 prices in their mind and buyers cannot use list price as a reasonable current market value and must dig deeper, much deeper. Savvy buyers working with the right agent will uncover a great opportunity that ultimately will meet your goals.

That being said every property has it's own metrics; location, supply in that neighborhood, lot characteristics, quality of construction, level of finishes, seller motivation and a whole host of factors come into play. One also cannot rely on a appraisal as they too can be flawed. I want to share with you one situation I recently had where the seller provided me an appraisal as a counter to our offer which was well below what we felt was closer to reality. Due to the length of that information I will forward same to your e-mail address. Again, one must dig into the information available and present a well thought out and fully explained reasoning with any offer and of course your motivation is also important in this process. One of the obligations I had yesterday was with a bank president in town from Boston and we are working on a deal in Delray Beach. This morning made an offer that was 20% below list price and I just spoke with my client I told him that if they did not accept the deal we should walk away from negotiations. Now many agents will say never walk away from the table but in my humble opinion it is at time the absolute best tactic. Again, each deal is different and a well though out strategy is important for success.

I, for one, never pay attention to what a commission on a deal is as my obligation is to negotiate the absolute best price and terms on a property that will meet my clients goals and the compensation tends to take care of itself. If I negotiate the best price on behalf of my client and walk with less compensation I am happy. The view my client has of me and my services and friendship is what drives me and also brings repeat business.

Your follow up post has me somewhat concerned as it appears you may have already targeted and perhaps seen the home you are interested in. If that is true it is imperative you deal with the agent who showed you the property and is most probably the procuring cause. Anything less will probably bring problems for all parties. You cannot utilize different agents on the same property without opening a hornets nest. Find an agent who you trust and they will bring more value to you than any other method you may be contemplating.

I work almost entirely as a buyers agent and would certainly be honored to be on the list of Realtors® you may decide to interview.

Always at Your Service,

Tom Priester e-PRO
"Results Driven Real Estate"

Keller Williams Realty
561 308-0175
Web Reference: http://www.tompriester.com
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 19, 2011
Walker, the success of the negotiation has a lot to do with the motivation of the seller. I believe the agent that will find out the motivation of the seller will be able to help you to get you the lowest price.
Too bad you are not in the Miami area. Good Luck! Oliver
3 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 18, 2011
Good Evening Gabriel. With all due respect, I must disagree. The objective of Johns inquiries seems to have changed a few times during the full course of this thread. If you refer back to the countless messages (we are up to 52 in total, and that doesn't account for the 4 that were removed by Trulia Moderators for inappropriate content), perhaps you can see that many of the messages could be perceived as such.

John had an unfortunate experience with an agent in Florida on a personal level and is trying to see how we as agents support the TB relationship established to be the norm in Florida Real Estate Transactions. My point is simply to help understand the full description of our role, determine what relationship is most suitable for a buyers situation, and find the best agent available to represent you in that capacity.

Nevertheless, this is not the proper forum for this discussion. If John is truly curious about this, it would be best for him to post a question himself to start a professional q&a regarding this topic as opposed to us hyjacking a buyers question. Let's keep in mind that we are not providing the buyer in this case with a very good feeling about the home buying experience or his ability to find an agent to represent his best interests in Florida based on the bantering that has taken place.

On the flip side, thank you Gabriel for your insightful responses and valuable feedback. I truly enjoyed reading your posts.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 23, 2011
John, in my opinion, the problem is in your delivery. And my intention is not to insult you, but you You "appear" to have already determined your opinion and position in this case, so I'm sure most agents feel there really is no point in trying to discuss it further with you. I will say this, you have repeatedly stated TB/No Agency-Brokerage Relationship as if the 2 are synonomous...when in fact, they are not.

Why do you continue to beat up on Florida agents? We don't determine Florida State Law....we are simply bound by it. Many of us determine how to conduct our professional business model in a fashion that is most suitable to our client needs. In terms of Agency Position on TB vs SA...I've worked with countless companies while negotiating and closing transactions and in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco and Manatee Counties, I have yet to encounter an agency that prohibits agents from offering Buyer Broker Agreements/Relationships. I'm not saying it doesn't exist, just that in my personal experience, I haven't seen it, so it appears to be a rare occurance.

Here is the definition of what a TB OWES the customer as determined by FREC (Florida Real Estate Commission):

1. Dealing honestly and Fairly
2. Accounting for all funds
3. Using Skill, Care, and Diligence in the Transaction
4. Disclosing all Known Facts that materially affect the value of residential real property and are not readily observable to the buyer
5. Presenting all offers and counteroffers in a timely manner unless the party has directed the licensee otherwise in writing
6. Limited confidentiality, unless waived in writing by the party.
TB may NOT reveal to EITHER party:
-Seller may accept a price less then asking or list
-buyer may pay a price higher then submitted in written offer
-Motivation of any party for selling or buying property

In Terms of No Brokerage Relationship...Per FREC only items 1., 2., and 3 apply in terms of what duties are "owed" to the customer.

To take it a step further...SINGLE AGENCY per FREC guidelines is defined by adding the following:
-Confidentiality (as opposed to limited)
-Full disclosure

I hope this is somewhat helpful to you John.

Charlene Weston (Cobelo)
PROUD Florida Realtor
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 23, 2011
You make a good case for buyer agency, my question to the florida agents that do the default transactional brokerage, TB no agency representation and how that limits a FL agents ability to get that buyer the best price and terms. Still dont hear any FL agents saying how TB is great for the buyers and sellers in FL..

As I understand TB, it is equivalent to what we practice in Illinois when doing ministerial acts for a person that is already represented or doesnt want to be represented. How constrictive are broker policies allowing agents to sign a buyer agency and thus over ride the default TB representation that is dominant in FL? I still don't get the lack of discussion and disclosure required to FL customers regarding who that friendly agent is working for.

Am I cookoo for making a big deal out people consuming real estate services and not knowing that agents in FL are not normally working for them but the transaction, and that is not just a nuanced position but one that requires not doing certain things for the person who thinks you are working for them. Unless the agent allows you to sign a buyer agency agreement, and extend higher level of service and responsibility of care.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 23, 2011
Crickets, I hear crickets...
How strange, no FL agents defend transactional brokerage or explain what a real estate client is giving up by default without agency discussion or agency disclosure in FL.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 23, 2011
You as a FL licensee can discuss the agency law and how it is great for consumers. Tell me where the upside is, I dont see it.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 21, 2011
How strange? Two agents - - both of whom do not reside in Florida and both of whom, it seems, are not licensed in Florida - - discussing Florida agency law.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 21, 2011
NJ John
Never disagreed about luxury expertise at the expense of buyer agency, my point is FL agents don't discuss agency because they dont need to discuss, disclose and initial or sign off on who they are working for. I think it It is good for agents to need to explain what role they are taking as a licensee in a transaction showing houses and filling in a contract. Is it agency based representation or is it based on everone working for the transaction and neither party is represented under agency law? What does that mean as to level of involvement putting a deal together. Notice that you don't see a bunch of FL agents defending TB as being a great thing for the buyers or the sellers! Tell me this is not like agents are getting paid for only doing no agency ministerial acts as a licensee. Can a FL agent use the TB protection and overstep those bounds for a particular client without consequence or is there liability for the brokerage for a FL agent to provide full fiducuary care rules to someone while pretending to transactional?
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 21, 2011
I appreciate your honest answer regarding the scope of the TB agency model. It does validate that it doesn't rise to a level of representation most people would expect when an agent representing them is getting paid. No advocacy, place client interests before there own, confidential forever, or consul beyond the published stats like pricing or bidding or counter offer strategy. Point 2 is that no discussion or disclosure regarding agency is required by FL law because it is assumed the public understands the continuum of agency.

This is an appropriate venue for original question, if a buyer of a $2M home in Boca doesnt understand that the agent he's working with doesnt rise to a level of representation he had in his last dealing with an agent, that should be helpful info for him. BTW, i didn't have 4 answers pulled by trulia moderator, so don't know where you came up with that.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 24, 2011

Full time realtor professionals out about the field daily have the resources, and experience to recognize an over priced listing which holds little value to anyone especially to the seller.
We also recognize well priced properties that offer superior value to the a buyer and those properties are the first to sell. It is rarely mentioned in conversations like this that bank appraisers first contact realtors to provide them their opinion of value for they too recognize their valuable support. In the age of short sales and foreclosures most of the consumer questions are based on asking a realtor what is a reasonable offer to be presented that would be accepted when they have a real interest in purchasing a specific property. The knowledge and the understanding and the appreciation of value is the driving force in our industry. The missing element is the knowledge of recognizing a buyer's potential and financial capabilities in their representation where it make an impact with the lending institutions. Lot of offers go up in smoke and disappoint anxious buyers who have been given false hopes with worthless offers. There is no denial that cash buyers have made out and have often changed the playing field and have been responsible for the uncontrolled down trend in values.
Making a strong case for lack of qualified buyers that live up to the high standards of lenders today.
Do cash buyers with ridiculous offers set the pace and provide incentives to agents to point them in the direction of these sales? Not unless the buyer recognizes that the seller has no ability to pay the realtor's commission taking a loss. Some bottom fishers forget that and leave their agents high and dry or miss an opportunity just because the agent fee was in the way of the deal.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 24, 2011
Thanks Charlene,

I am familiar with John's style he could be a bull in a china shoppe.
I too get carried away sometimes when I see agents forget themselves loosing their head and give a false impression to our values and profession. They loose control of their identity and become like sharks at a feeding frenzy at the smell of money.
Suppose the question was worded. Need a buyers agent to buy a home in the Boca area for $95,000. How to ensure the agent negotiate the lowest price?
Is there an incentive for the buyers agent for lowering the price? My answer would be the same . Realtors do not control price. They do provide a service where they present all offers provided the buyer is able and qualified to perform. Some agents will skip this valuable lesson and they will be acting like chauffeurs driving free loaders around town waisting everyone's time and feeling like fools when they find out they were used the buyer was not for real.
The real motivation of a buyer's buyer'sagent is to be recognized as a professional who is not motivated by compensation alone or the value of the purchase but the application of his expertise to perform to the satisfaction of his client. This service is offered to those that recognize the need of a professional who devotes his time and energy and sole representation to the interest of his buyer without the compromise of his integrity in making false promises or incentives that are not within his scope of his job description.
The art of negotiation is not strictly on price for that alone leaves little room to compromise if a property is reasonably priced by a professional listing agent representing his best interest to his the seller.
Terms are usually negotiated which may provide a number of avenues where it may be an advantage to the buyer's needs which in the end could mean substantial savings. The process is rather simple you would not use the same attorney representing your counterpart why would you use the same agent who represents the seller?
The choice is you deserve better representation and that is the biggest incentive we can offer.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 24, 2011

When you require the services of a Real Estate Attorney there is no question that you get a bill for whatever services he clocked you on.
Why would a Buyer's Agents be any different.Attorneys and Buyer's Agents are somewat similar for they do represent you at all times. They can both write contracts and negotiate on your behalf. The difference is an agent may spend months searching and showing properties to you that you may make an offer on. If you asked an attorney to do the same thing there would be a slight difference on your bill.

However if you tried to do it on your own without the services of a realtor the soup may cost you more than the meat and you may end up working more with an attorney to fix where you screwed up. Just another reason why a buyer's agent may ensure a lowest price in the choice of two . For your money a real bargain.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 23, 2011
John is not beating up on Florida Realtors he is asking a legitimate question of describing the thin line between a Dual Agency which was deemed illegal and a Transactional Agency which is a bird of the same feather.
Limited Confidentiality by interpretation reverts back to buyer or seller beware raising the question of TRUST.

It most definitely makes a good case for SingleAgency or Buyers Representation which by the same token is a full pledged fiduciary relationship. On the other hand Charlene is correct that implementing single agency or buyers agency is much more difficult of a task when realtors as a majority are giving away the store( information)
free for anyone that asks without holding their feet to the fire and establishing a professional service providing the buyer the rules of engagement . It is why we are constantly arguing over establishing the procuring agent .
When the States demand agents to adhere to rules and laws of ethics in protecting the consumer rights the same laws are not enforceable in protecting our own. When you invite a clown to a party laughing has it's price.

Our business practice is more like Early Bird where attracting drunks to a bar to start feasting on free food.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 23, 2011
The real value of a buyers agent is that they are so tuned into a variety and layers of the market that they can offer to find and connect the buyer with narrow selection of properties specific as described and sought by the buyer.All this without the conflict of representation of an other party or one specific property .The buyers agent is engaged by mutual signed agreement that spells out the terms of his duties and obligations to perform and get compensated. In the pursuit of these goals on behalf of the Buyer expenses for the effort and time becomes a responsibility of the buyer for doing business with the broker regardless if the buyer purchases the properties or not . The agent is hired for a fee that is determined by time and difficulties of the job described. The agent is hired not to guarantee the lowest price but to negotiate the best price for the best value available. The choice of purchase is voluntary the price offered and accepted is made strictly on the discretion of the buyer and the seller. Buyers Agency in practice is based on a principal of trust and knowledge. Any agent that performs these duties without a written specific contract is not a buyer's agent but typical agent looking for complications and disappointment.

Information is knowledge the rest is salesmanship. Anyone can sell something that someone wants but to have the reason, knowledge and choice and apply facts to assist in that decisions is the real purpose of the buyer's agent. The Broker is engaged and is hired as a professional for the job like any job other it comes with a price for compensation based on the level of performance.

Is it better to target or focus on negotiating a deal based on your specific values and your desires and your financial capabilities than to play the odds that come with a greater risk of loosing in negotiations based on pride or the irresponsibility for setting high expectations on a unattainable price?
The real question do you really NEED a BUYER"S AGENT REPRESENTING YOUR INTERESTS? or just a YES MAN?
What VALUE if any does it hold for you ?

Knowing that difference is what we BUYERS BROKERS are about. The rest is for you guessing weather you got a good deal or not. The best deals are not always about price but about satisfaction of purpose.
Buyers' Agents find the greatest incentive in that satisfaction and future business it produces by recommendations.
My experience with buyers is that we start out strictly as business based on simple factors for mutual needs. in that process we get to know each other and that experience opens doors to mutual respect and expectations.

Gabriel Palotas
Buyer's Brokerage is not for Everyone but Could You Use One?
Posted Under: Home Buying | March 1, 2011 8:16 AM | 104 views |
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 23, 2011
John from Ill,

Relevant to the question? Nah, To you maybe for argument sake.. but in general.. nah.

The buyer needs to find the agent in the area that is the premier listing and selling agent for million dollar properties. Given the rules in Florida I am most positive that the agents that run their business in the state act accordingly to the state laws, such as I do in NJ, you do in Illinois and the agents do in Florida.

These rules were not created yesterday and the state of Florida is probably not the state of confusion.

I am pretty positive; the agent will discuss said relationships with the buyer probably at the first meeting as we all do. The last thing this guy needs is a Realtor from Illinois filling his head an argument that only exists here on Trulia. Agents love to argue this stuff on Trulia beat their heads until they bleed.. when it never really comes into play with clients.

I am sure that many a transaction is handled in Florida without the hint of any issues regarding relationships.. not that they do not arise.. I am sure they do.. but for the 99.5% of the sales and such.. probably not.

This buyer needs an agent in his area experienced in luxury home sales.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 20, 2011
John from NJ
This is relevant discussion to people in FL that the person that shows them the house they like cannot go to bat for them and provide expert consule beyond public information and MLS stats. States have a right to make their own laws regarding this matter. FL happens to have sided with the real estate industry desire to avoid liability over consumer rights. in a lawsuit crazy declining market, I get it. Buyers might blame the agent if they overspent on a house, or accuse the agent of not showing them a different house.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 20, 2011
As a transactional agent, i.e. no agency can you advise the side you are "representing" as to where to counter offer, suggest a bidding strategy, place that persons interests ahead of your own, using full fiduciary care, confidential forever, advocacy for your side at the the disadvantage of the other party? It's my understanding that you cant do that under transactional brokerage. If I am a buyer I don't want all parties treated fairly! I want to gain advantage through the agent I select. Mamsy pamsy no agency

My own experience is that a TB agent will spout stats and say I will put in whatever price you tell me in the contract. If you are getting paid to represent my side and cant say, lets not give your last offer yet, or go one more round of counter offer, or let's stall negotiations for a week, let the counter stand and counter offer lower next weekend, thats advicacy and full representation.

My question to FL agents is can you provide full agency services as a transactional broker to clients and still use the TB protection language if things go bad? What specifically can you not do as a TB agent? In FL is part of the problem that you consider it dual agency if an office has a listing and not the agent representing the buyer?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 20, 2011

I presume you may be joking but why on earth would a buyers brokerage agreement, which in my opinion is usually a one sided agreement to protect the Realtor® and not the client, prohibit me from treating a customer like a full client? Do you think if the person you worked with in Florida would have signed the piece of paper you offered to sign you magically would have been provided better representation? There is certainly no law that would prohibit me from providing my client's fiduciary care, advocacy and advantage in a negotiation and to assert otherwise is misleading at best.

While I have never had anyone unilaterally ask to sign a buyers brokerage agreement if you want to come on down to Paradise and find the perfect opportunity I would be very happy to enter into that agreement with you.

Always at Your Service,

Tom Priester e-PRO
"Results Driven Real Estate"

Keller Williams Realty
561 308-0175
Web Reference: http://www.tompriester.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 20, 2011
How can you be a buyer agent without a buyer agency agreement in a presumed transactional brokerage state and treat that client with market insite at the expense of the listing side? The protection language of transactional brokerage, I would think prohibit you from treating a customer like a full client, as described in the NAR code of ethics.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 20, 2011
FL is a presumed transactional brokerage state, meaing that FL agents dont even have to discuss agency or that the majority are transactional agents, meaning they work for the transaction and not you! That friendly FL agent that sells a lot probably is only faciliting the transaction and cannot by law provide you fiduciary care, advocacy and advantage in a negotiation. Gov Bush right before he left office changed the real estate law to be transactional instead of client driven protect agents from liability. Worst part is that there is no signed disclosure or discussion required under the FL law since it is presumed the public understands what transactional brokerage means. In Illinois we have to explain what agency means and have a disclosure signed. Buyers would fairly assume that if you show them the house and are getting paid that their best interests are being protected.

Wife and I went to FL to buy a condo in Jan. Worked with an agent referred to us, I offered to sign a buyer agency agreement and she declined, said that wasnt necessary. I thought that wierd, in IL we like to have buyers willing to sign a buyer agreement, similar to listing agreement for a buyer. She never explained why, I found out later that her office had a policy against her using that form. She never described a continuum of agency because she didnt have to. I wanted to write offers and she was unable to advocate on my behalf, because that would expose her to treating me like a client. I had to do my own research and say these units closed for $78 per sqft, and asking price is 112/sqft and she wouldnt agree with my premise and advocate for less than asking price.
If an agent wont dobuyer agency find another agent.
If you like my answer, thumbs up me and best answer, thx!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 20, 2011
Hi Walker,

First thing you do to is continue your due diligence within the area on the agent level and find out which agent(s) in your area that handle "luxury" properties. I had been certified in my area here to sell homes in this range as well as listing and selling many of these properties in my area in this price range.


This is a different conversation than that of an agent that sells homes in the 100K - 600k range. There is a different mindset of the luxury homes specialist. There is a different conversation with the seller. The average agent will be falling over themselves with $ signs in their eyes to make this sale and will usually not handle the negotiation and transaction accordingly. Look for an agent that has Luxury Home sales, listing experience and training.

I know I will get flak from agents out here who will want to know and demand I post “the difference”

I will not get into that conversation, rather I suggest you.. Call in Jim Bob the local agent and interview him.. Then call in your local luxury homes specialist.

Let us know how that goes.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 19, 2011
Hi Walker. I'm not local to your area but I found your question interesting and just wanted to give you my two cents worth. I'll take a leap of faith that you would indeed consider talking with a few Realtors first to get a "feel" for their ability and your own comfort level.

How can anyone be totally sure if they got the best or lowest price in anything? Do you interview brain surgeons to get a best price, or a doctor, or an attorney? I suppose you'll always ponder the question of lowest price even if you make the purchase. It is difficult to know if you got the lowest price but you can most likely get the best price. One way to gauge price would be through an extensive Comparable Market Analysis. This would show not only what has recently sold but also what is currently on the market and for how long. The problem there is if homes in this area are not exactly the same in appearance, square footage, amenities, location, upgrades, the CMA may be a questionable guide at best. It's not an exacting science.

Sellers may also have any number of reasons for selling. Some reasons can be Divorce, a job move, downsizing as they may be empty nesters, upsizing because their family is getting larger or trying to stay ahead of a possible forclosure. They could also just want to get some new neighbors! Since we're talking about property in this kind of price range I might think the seller is somewhat well heeled. If your Realtor can't get to the need of the seller, the seller may just be testing the waters.

One thing I would suggest is that you be prepared to walk away from the property. If the sellers are in no hurry, they won't bite at just any offer. They could also counter your offer and then the games begin. You can always go to a best and final offer but at that point of a negotiation if the sellers don't go for it you're done. I certainly wish you the best in whatever you decide.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 24, 2011
I am glad to be invited in that selection. You see I too choose the buyers I feel comfortable to work with as well. Chemistry has lot to do with it.
My success is not measured by past transactions of twentyfold years in the real estate business it is only measured by this moment and how I adapt myself to each second that goes by. I have not wasted a moment in my life thinking of what I did to be grandiose or have sustained view of myself as better than others that causes the narcissist to view others . I prefer to make others feel successful with their own decisions in which I may play a minute part. Each agent that is actively surviving in this industry today is more than capable in helping you. They understand adversity, challenges and they survive, They are all a bit like me!

There is no power more invincible. … than humility
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 18, 2011
Hi Walker,

The biggest incentive for me in negotiating the lowest possible price and terms of the deal, are a happy customer. A happy customer tells a friend I did a good job for them, an unhappy customer tells 10 friends that I was terrible.

Are you buying a brand new home from a builder? If so there is usually less room for negotiation. On a resale home you are usually negotiating with a private seller. Seller's have emotional attachments to their homes. Depending on the sellers motivation they may be more or less inclined to accept a lower offer.

You need to find yourself a Realtor with whom you feel comfortable. Interview the agent and get an inkling about their personality and find out if you are compatible. Does the agent have the "spark" that indicates they are likely to do the job you want done.

If I can be of further service, please give me a call.

Nadine Mauro
Highlight Realty
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 18, 2011
I respond to the question directly without reading the other responses. By doing so I arrive at two objectives.
The answer is honestly mine not a product or combination of responses. Second it makes a valuable first impression in the agents introduction

The buyer agent does in deed by his fiduciary relationship provides his skills in negotiating to get the bets value for price offered. The objective is accomplished by first learning those needs in order of priority. Any or all purchases are made through a series of options. Options need to create a variety in choices that compliment the original objective. These could generally be described by illustrating : price, general location,
General description and style of property visualizing the elements that are considered most important to the buyer. The final phase is the response factor created by series of choices offered.
Placing weight on the factors or components that create interest can be analyzed for value. Desire, of personal esthetic factors aside this would be relatively easy to accomplish. So it is important to keep the buyer cognoscente of those factors and values which becomes as important in the final approach to an offer. This is not a simple balancing act for the buyer for it it requires his ultimate trust and experience of his agent and self control.
Price can often be negotiated with terms that favor the buyer’s objective and offer solution for a seller to agree to. Anyone that insists that a buyer’s agent is not a valuable part of negotiating the lowest or best price has either not worked with a buyer’s agent before or have little expectation of them.
I welcome the challenge and the consideration in you evaluating process of choosing your agent.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 18, 2011
Hi, Walker -

You're going to get many answers to your question from a large group of competent and reputable Boca Raton realtors. It's the kind of question about Boca home prices we can't help responding to.

The first set of answers we need are: is it a short sale? Is it foreclosure? If it is either of those two, there may be competing bids. Are you prepared to pay cash or are you coming in with a mortgage? If you're coming with a mortgage, are you pre-approved for that mortgage?

What is the address of this Boca Raton home? Once we know that, we can put together comps of this particular subdivision or other similar homes in Boca within a mile radius, if there are not a sufficient number of comparables within the original neighborhood.

What is the condition of this property? Is it relatively new? Is it relatively old and improved? Is it a tear-down?
Is it on the water or is it inland?

Any real estate agent in Boca Raton who works as your buyer's agent will do his or her best to negotiate the lowest price possible for you.

So, the answer to whether there is an incentive for buyer's agents to negotiate a lower price is yes -- because we work for you, the buyer, and we know you will not expect to pay the asking price. However, the final price you offer most work for both you and the seller, otherwise there is no contract. We do not get paid a commission just for negotiating a lower price.

You might also ask whether there is an incentive for the seller's agent to work with us to lower the price: the answer is typically yes, because most buyers are too savvy to pay the full asking price, even in today's lower-priced Boca real estate market.

If you would like help in negotiating your purchase, or you have further questions, please call or e-mail me.

Thank you.

Marc Jablon, The Jablon Team
Realty Associates
Web Reference: http://www.JablonTeam.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 18, 2011
Hi Walker. Since this is a Buyer's Market and has been for several years, every buyer expects to get the lowest price for the property they love. The biggest role as a buyer's agent is being able to negotiate the best deal for their buyer. I have been working primarily with buyers and have been offered an additional incentive to negotiate the best price for my buyer, but I graciously declined because negotiating a great deal for my customer is what I do for a living. Doing a great job every time I work with a customer is my goal because you will refer business to me and also use me as your Realtor if and when the time arises. Interview 2 or 3 real estate agents to see if you feel confident that he/she will work hard for you and if his/her style works well for you. If you would like to discuss this further please feel free to call me at 561-445-8743 or email me at Nicole@BuySellBoca.com.

Just an FYI, feel free to check out my website and read testimonials from previous customers. Those are the kind of reviews you want to see in choosing the right agent.


Nicole Marks Mason, Realtor
Web Reference: http://www.BuySellBoca.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 18, 2011
Yes, an Exclusive Buyers Agent is entitled as your fiduciary agent to owe specific obligations to home buyers that other agents do not and one of these is to provide full disclosure on the property and another loyalty which means getting you the best price on a property possible since you are the represented party.

Gail Kennell
Real Estate Broker
Exclusive Buyers Agent
South Florida
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 25, 2012
I just sold a million shares of that house for $19.95 on The Home Shopping Network in less than an hour. I am now negotiating on a C.O.D. delivery.
Walker care to pick up a steal?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 19, 2012
Terry nailed this one! Go with the "Transaction Broker", communicate your goals and make sure you have an agent that agrees with your goals to ensure he will represent them from the heart not the wallet. Do your due diligence together and be realistic on your expectations. :) I also work as "transaction broker". Honesty and integrity is the basis to forming a long term relationship. These are not purchased, they are free. Get the right agent!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 19, 2012
I came into this conversation very late but feel I must add my two cents. In Florida the obedience and loyalty required by a single agency relationship puts the CLIENT at risk of liability. Obedience - think about that word and what it means - it is simple - it means to obey. If I obey my client and make an error the client can be held responsible as I owed them obedience. Don't believe this - check out Florida real estate agency relationships and what they really mean.

As a transactional agent we can negotiate on your behalf as our buyer - some of the comments on this topic are just outright untrue. Florida agency relationships are different then most states so work with an agent who will work hard to get you the best deal while not putting you in a position of being liable for their errors in the event errors occur.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 10, 2012
Your agent is on your team. So hopefully they want You, Walker to get the best deal possible. Assuming they are experienced, they will do all their homework for you. Provide You with CMA's, It's also how your agent positions the contract. An incentive for the seller could possibly be a quick closing, all the contingencies out of the way within 7 days. Your Agent needs to figure out what motivates the seller and position that in the contract.

If you need help, it's my pleasure to assist you.
Call me anytime at 561.819.2958
Sincerely yours,
Jennifer Susanne Sommers
Web Reference: http://www.AgentBoca.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 27, 2011

Education is a valuable tool that prepares realtors to face the challenges of changing markets.
There are many agents that spend countless hours perfecting those skills by taking and paying for courses that are made available by our National Realtor's Association to obtain special skills through hours of grilling education and examinations. to obtain credentials and designations to make them expert in the field. With most of our home values under water and one out of every seventh home in either in foreclosure or in a short sale the designation of a Short Sale Foreclosure Specialist bring valuable knowledge to help our consumers today.
The skill by which they negotiate based on facts and understanding the process can be both rewarding to both buyer and sellers. Many realtors experience in the field surpass attorneys knowledge with the vast new applications of countless new programs and their applications in writing a contract. This knowledge provides savings of money and time. To obtain these properties( foreclosure or short sales) and how to successfully close on them is a difference between an agent that avoids them because they do not know how to deal with them or an agent that can because they know how. It is time to know the difference and appreciate the result. Who knows they may ensure you buying a property you may have not considered. A little education goes along way but the respect for knowledge and the application of that knowledge is priceless.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 26, 2011
Just a kind reminder to all my professional friends, Realtors are the source for the source which is information.
It is valuable more than most of you realize but you give it away.
Most of you posting forgot one of the fundamental don't in in our profession realtors are not supposed to give advice.That is what lawyers do. Which is more often wrong but right but they still get paid for it. The one lesson to protect our assets is say little but get it signed. We are not easy but mostly stupid. Before you go on show and tell get one thing straight qualify that buyer not by simple questions that may sound embarrassing to many but actual proof of written mortgage approval letter or a letter of credit from a finical institution. If not for the protection of your safety consider the safety of the sellers before you take the so called buyer to show their million dollar home. You could just become an accessory in a heist and assisting a criminal. I know I may sound defensive but in times like today you better learn the rules that apply in the jungle. So many of you responsible and intelligent people act ignorant and childlike at the sound of money. Have you forgotten the lesson you preach every day to your children not to get into a strangers car?
How many of you do? Time to rethink the process of getting to know your buyers. One good rule of thumb never meet them at a listing you are to show. Never hand out addresses of properties you are about to show. Watch the content of e mails that you so freely send out to every Dick and Harry.
Have them meet you in a busy office. Make sure that you tell them to have their identification drivers license or passport with proof of fonds a letter of credit or an approval letter for a mortgage before you take them on a caravan. If more of you started asking for these it could make you look more professional and not like a gofer...
There would be many of you that could make it a practice of signing a single agency agreement and explaining the rules of the game. There would be time devoted to explain the difference between a buyers agency or just a free ride.
Walker has been asking a lot of questions not just with this post but with many others targeting Luxury properties.
If you were a seller how would you react to the number of agents that embarrass themselves with their careless responses and information that create a conflict with the way you do business. This is not a competition for who is who but a source of contradiction of being anything but a professional. To change the industry change the way you do business. There are ambulance chase lawyers and there are lawyers. There are realtors and there are Buyer"s Agents a class on it's own. Listing agents who are professionals know the difference too. They are the ones that know what they are doing and make their job worthwhile. We both sell. We both negotiate.
We both represent just one party. The rest speak on both sides of their mouth and will promise you the moon.
Buyers and Sellers know the difference. It could make your life a bit safer and a lot more rewarding. Your confidentiality is fully protected by a written contract that speaks volume of the ethics of our profession. Have your agents display those ethics we live by the next time you make an appointment with a professional.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 26, 2011
Dear Walker,
Yes! Our incentive is to have a very happy buyer and hopefully future business with them, as well as their aquaintences! We will do our best to get the best price for you!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 25, 2011

There is an incentive, but it depends on the business model of the buyers agent. My business model is to build a business based on referrals. We discuss commissions in our initial meeting prior to viewing any homes. What we discuss is that we would rather you have a great experience and get a great value and refer us to your family and friends than make the most money on one transaction. I think that this needs to be an active conversation up front and then you need to read testimonials and talk with past buyer clients prior to making a decision on an agent. Best
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 23, 2011

All of this is great discussion between agents, but for you, this is not a concern. This bantering about agency relationships never really arises in the daily market of real estate of buying and selling. The internet has given these forums to agents, buyers and sellers to ask questions, voice their opinions and debate.

When in actuality.... the only arguments about this stuff that ever occur are here on sites like this. I have never had an issue with agency relationships with a buyer oir seller client. Never, not one.

First and foremost you need to research and find the key agents in the luxury market in your area. I am pretty positive that once you find the luxury home professional in your area, he/she will explain agency relationships to you in your first meeting and that will be that.

Drop us a lne here and let us know how it went!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 20, 2011

Please let me start by saying, as a transplant in Florida from NY, I UNDERSTAND the confusion, and surprise at how Real Estate Law/Transactions are governed in Florida. It was a huge learning experience for me with over 20 yrs experience in Real Estate coming from a state where Single Agency is the norm and no Transaction Agency is allowed.

Problem is, at least in Florida where the transactions outnumber those of Illinois 5 to 1, that most buyers were alarmed and concerned by the Transaction Notice forms...they felt they were being "tricked" into signing something. And with the volume of sales, it was creating a literal mess for the state with buyers calling state agencies to find out why they are being asked to sign these forms...etc...because, just a couple years ago, we were REQUIRED to present all buyers with Transaction Broker Notices PRIOR to showing them any homes.

A responsible agent, explains what their role is to both buyers AND sellers alike regardless of required disclosures so their clients UNDERSTAND and can decide what representation works best for them and of course, an agency agreement should be in place if Single Agency Representation is requested....we also have the opportunity in Florida to represent our clients in a Single Agency capacity with the consent to transition to transaction broker. I cannot speak for all agents nor can anyone else, regardless of geographic location. We are individuals with individual choices in how we choose to do business within the boundaries of our laws. I will say, that I for one have NEVER represented both sides in a transaction. It is a personal choice. Most agents in Florida will disagree with me, but the reality is that it is IMPOSSIBLE to fully represent 2 sides of a transaction and offer both the best representation possible which is why dual agency is prohibited in the state of Florida, and shoud be in all states. The intended objective in Transaction agency is to represent the "transaction" or "work for the contract" and representation is to facilitate the transaction itself, and not to represent either party in a fiduciary capacity.

In Florida, yes, we are PRESUMED to be acting in the capacity of Transaction Brokers, which does NOT mean we are representing both buyer and seller in all transactions but that we are acting within the parameters of Florida Law and CAN work with both legally. We can establish a Single Agency Agreement with our Buyers and we can absolutely provide comparative analysis and negotiate on behalf of our clients in either Transaction OR Single Agency Roles. I have no idea what the situation was that you experienced back in January, but I would suggest you find a different agent to work with going forward. She should have given you the opportunity to decide what representation would be most beneficial for you.

Thank you for your time and feedback, I really enjoyed reading your response...I hope this helps you to see that not all Agents in Florida are the same :-)

Charlene Weston (Cobelo)
Smith and Associaes
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 20, 2011
Absolutely. Referrals! A happy buyer refers their friends which generates more business which is the #1 priority.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 18, 2011
Incentive? How about you, the client, being so happy that your agent negotiated and helped you through the transaction that you refer him/her to people you know? Ask the agent where their business comes from. If most of their business comes from past client referrals, that's a good thing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 18, 2011
Pick a active local real estate agent and sit down and go over your potential home purchase with them. They should be able to show you exactly what they will do for you and why.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 18, 2011
Mr. Walker:

Your question has intrigued me. What inspires you to hire a buyers agent?
Gary Goldberg
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 18, 2011
I am able to assist you. Have you picked any properties? If not, at Lang, we always have new luxury properties to see. Negotiate is very important and it's important to have all the facts to do make a difference. Just let me know if I can help. p.roseboom@langrealty.com.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 16, 2011
Dear Walker,

Your agent is on your team. So hopefully they want You, Walker to get the best deal possible. Assuming they are experienced, they will do all their homework for you. Provide You with CMA's, It's also how your agent positions the contract. An incentive for the seller could possibly be a quick closing, all the contingencies out of the way within 7 days. Your Agent needs to figure out what motivates the seller and position that in the contract.

If you need help, it's my pleasure to assist you.
Call me anytime at 561.819.2958
Sincerely yours,
Jennifer Susanne Sommers
Web Reference: http://www.AgentBoca.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 11, 2011
Incentive to lower price - no, not really. I wrote a blog post on Conflicts of Interest here: http://our-big-house.blogspot.com/

Unless the agent believes you are going to hold firm at your low bid and therefore the only chance a deal gets done is if he/she can make this work.

The agent gets paid a % of the selling price, so his/her incentive is to go higher.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 23, 2011
I can understand the concern on this one, because most agents would be happy just to reach an agreement to make the sale. I would ask an agent for a solid CMA to get an idea of what the property is worth, then tell them you are only willing to pay 200K under that and I'll bet they'll fight extremely high for it.

Another problem is that once an agent has a buyer's rep contract it's often for a period of time. Make the contract good for just one home at a time (specific property address). This will ensure the agent doesn't have the attitude of "there's always the next one" so they'll do their best on the one in play.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 22, 2011
If you are interested in purchasing a home in this price range, it should have the upgrades you are looking for as well as the size and location you are looking for. It sounds like you already found this home as you have the price, which means you have an agent.

If you just picked this price and have looked online, then you can work with a professional buyers agent you feel comfortable with. A buyers agent should have the tools and knowledge available to negotiate a great price for you. I have sold homes in this price range to buyers. You will also need proof of funds or a pre-approval letter when making an offer.

Susan Penn, PA, EWM Realtor
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Sep 22, 2011
Great answer by Tom. I'd be giving him a call if I were you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 20, 2011
Hi Walker,

All of your questions can be answered here:

then click Hitchcock's Column
then "Why You Need A Buyer's Agent !"
Web Reference: http://www.garylisa.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 19, 2011
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