Home Buying in Martinez>Question Details

Very Tired, Home Buyer in Martinez, CA

Our agent always steers us clear of the houses that we find and enquire about .

Asked by Very Tired, Martinez, CA Wed Nov 4, 2009

either the house is pending or she states that
the agent never calls her back; also she appeared lightly upset when we did not chose a large house that she showed us. Also, most the the properties she's shown us have major problems. How can we test her to see if she is a sellers broker/agent, and if she has our best intentions in mind? My gut feeling is that she is only showing us properties that she may not have to share much commissions. She is listed online as an seller of brokers' supplies - do you know what that means? PLEASE HELP Hunting for houses is hard enough, though she appears a good girl--something feels wrong

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Dear Very Tired

Have a heart-to-heart conversation with your realtor and express your concerns. Don't let it fester as it is counter-productive. She may be doing her best to find properties for you.

If you don't already know this, in certain price levels, there is tremendous competition where there is multiple offers within days of when a property is listed. I had once attempted to write an offer on a bank owned property under $250K in Hayward, only to find out from the listing agent that she had already received 98 offers, the majority of them for "significantly" over list price and many are cash buyers.

It's difficult to explain to the buyer when this happens because the buyers are still of the opinion that this is a buyer's market. Not so.

In the current market where there are a lot of short sales, we never know what the final commission would be anyway since the lenders would negotiate that. It will be time consuming to weed out listings with lower commissions. Just to give you an idea of $$:

Assume a sales price of $300K, with commissions of 6%, spit 50-50 between agencies. Assume that your agent has a 80-20% split with her broker(ilt., she has 80% of that 3% sales commission

$300 X 3$9K X 80% split = $7,200 (before taxes, E& O insurance, transaction fees, etc)

Assume 5% commission, split 50-50 between agencies.
$300 X 2.5% = $7.5K X 80% split = $6K (before taxes, E&O insurance, teansaaction fees, etc).

The agent's objective is to get you a home, be in escrow, and close that transaction. The agent doesn't get paid for any of her time until she closes escrow. Also note that she doesn't get reimbursed for any of her expenses either. Thus, the sooner you get in contract, the better. Why would she prolong the process by refusing to show you properties?
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 4, 2009
Very Tired,

What you are hearing is something like what I tell my FHA clients. My people have a lot of choices but those choices are less than perfect situations. I frequently tell them we cant see a short sale because the tenant or seller is restricting showings to times when they are not available and some are fixers where standard FHA loan wouldn't work.

The solution is simple enough. Ask her to verify her claims. Why can't we see his property? What is the major problem? How does that problem affect me? She can't e-mail you the agent version of the MLS but she can show you the printed sheet and whatever the seller is disclosing about the property from associated documents, if any.
Web Reference: http://bob2sell.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 5, 2009
What do you mean by steering? Frequently my clients find homes that are pending, going pending, no longer on the market, will not accept FHA financing, has 12 offers and would drive my client over budget etc. . . and I explain this to my client.

However, some agents may try to steer you to homes paying higher commissions or listings with their own firm.

Ask him/her why and what the issues are.
Web Reference: http://AsksGene.info
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 5, 2009
Very Tired,

Our data base the Multiple Listing Service is up to the minute. Buyers are viewing homes through websites that take the information from there so they are not as accurate. If your agent says it is pending then it is. Right now most of the properties that are available do have major problems, you have to remember these are homes that the previous owner has lost. The last thing they are doing is spending their money on maintenance and improvements on a house that the bank is going to take over eventually. Some have even damaged them on purpose and removed any upgrades they had added.

All agents can work with buyers and sellers. In today's market there are more buyers than sellers.

Very tired, right now agents are submitting numerous offers for their clients hoping one offer will be accepted. To be honest commissions are taking a back seat to "I got an accepted offer"!!!! Very competitive out there. I wish you a lot of luck in your home purchase and I suggest you hang in there and remember no house is perfect especially right now.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 4, 2009
Very Tired

Please understand that we do not know if you have a signed Buyers Agreement (If so, refer to it) or any other actual circumstances so my reply is just a General one and just an opinion.

You are the Consumer..You have hired the Services of an Agent...Those Services include assisting you to understand the Process and to be informed so you can make wise decisions about a Large Financial Obligation....Without good communication between you and the Agent, without the comfort of having a Professional assist YOU in attaining YOUR Goals what is the point?

If you hire Services from anyone in any Profession and you are uncomfortable or unhappy with with those Services then you find someone who can preform those Services in a more Professional manner....

You are Hiring Services when you use an RE Agent and there are many Agents so be upfront with the Agent about your goals and demand they tell you what Services they provide for what expected cost.....Do not be satisfied with anything less than a Professional Agent who will communicate honestly with you.....

To your General question my General reply/opinion is.........Find an Agent you feel is providing the Services you require to attain YOUR goals and YOU are comfortable working with.

Why settle for anything less?

Good luck, Dunes
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 4, 2009
Dear Very Tired,

Trust your instincts and change agents. Ask friends for referrals in your area. You are right, looking for a house is hard enough. You need a trusted advisor and advocate in this complicated process.

Lisa Smith
Fine Homes Specialist
Prudential Santa Fe, NM
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 4, 2009
If you aren't happy with your agent and what she is showing, it's time to make a change. Always remember that your client/ agent relationship should always have your best interests in mind. Speak directly to her and let her know why you are letting her go. Then call a reputable Real Estate company in the area you want to live in and interview 3 agents to select one that you want to work with.
-Ninkey Dalton, Pacific Palisades, CA
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 4, 2009
Hi Very Tired,

I'm not sure what 'broker's supplies' means. Does she hold a DRE real estate license? If not, she may not be qualified to represent you to the highest standard as those of us that have licenses. You should feel that she is on your side and representing your best interests at all times. If not, then it could be that she is not the right fit for you or that she is not happy representing you. Either way, it should be worth having an honest discussion with her and if you don't get a satisfactory answer, move on to someone that feels right for you.

Like any relationship there needs to be trust and chemistry that you work well together.

Good luck to you,
Suzanne Looker
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 4, 2009
If you are not happy with your agent, you would speak with her about your concerns. If you are not satisfied with her response, then you should find a new agent. Your agent works for you and you have to be happy. Most agents represent sellers and buyers and are able to help each group with sacrificing service. It is true that many properties that appear available right now are not, especially short sales and bank owned properties. Also, the inventory of available properties is very low right now. Don't worry, early next year, inventory should increase significantly.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 4, 2009
Very tired,
I would first speak to your agent about your concerns. If your gut is telling you something is not right I would go with what you believe to be true. Unfortunately, there are agents out there with alterior motives. You're right it's stressful enough without worring about your agnet's intentions.
Best,
Erica

Erica Jones Starkey
Broker, Co-Founder
JSCA Real Estate Group
Providing Superior Solutions for Your Individual Real Estate Needs
Web Reference: http://www.jscarealty.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 22, 2010
Hi Very Tired,
You are very welcome! I hope you and your agent have had a chance to discuss your expectations and needs. She is lucky to have you.
Good luck in your purchase,
Suzanne Looker
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 12, 2009
TO: the real estate professionals who answered my question regarding being steered towards certain homes. A MILLION THANKS! Even as a brand new homebuyer I know that many of you work very hard, so please know that you are appreciated.

For the record, I forgot to mention that: I am a cash buyer due to an inheritance and plan to choose within my budget; And that the agent appeared upset when I did not make an offer on the very first house I ever viewed!
This can not be the way it's done. Sorry for this novel I just wrote. Better go nowe
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 12, 2009
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