Well, Betty, you can probably get away with it, as long as the agreement doesn't obligate you to pay a commission and the broker wasn't the procuring cause. If you have any doubts, then you might consult with an attorney.
As a real estate broker myself, I wonder how instrumental this broker was in getting you to the point where you could recognize this apartment as a good deal and your potential home. As an analogy - if you were a singer and you met a record producer who agreed to produce some tracks for you, and you went into the studio without them and knocked out some hits, they wouldn't feel like you owed them anything. But if you'd worked on tracks together for months, and then one night got the vocals right, that producer might feel as if they were instrumental in coaching you to the point where you could nail the track.
So, you're probably not legally obligated, and the ethical thing is in your court.
All the best,
As a buyer you should have a broker represent you in a sales contract
I understand a seller not wanting to pay a commission, but that is not in your best interest. There are simply too many issues that can arise.
Kawain Payne, Realtor
In this type of case consider negotiating their commission, and if your friend will not pay a commission to a buyers representative, consider paying it yourself, and subtract that amount from your friends asking price. Betty if you hire an attorney they will charge you regardless, unless you know them personally. Sometimes we have to switch shoes with the other person, and see what it would be like not to be compensated for your efforts.
Best advice I can give is do not purchase any real estate without proper representation.
Best of luck to you,
That being said, are you absolutely certain that "not wanting to pay a commission" is the only reason "the friend of a friend" does not want to use a broker? There are lots of property disclosures involved the FSBO seller is not exempt from. If you don't have anyone guiding you how will you know that you received all disclosures you are entitled to, for example? How will you compare prices to arrive at a reasonable & comfortable offering price etc.? Yes, you can find information online but your buyer's agent can help you makes sense of all the numbers: price per square footage, average seller subsidy just to name a couple.
It is one thing if the seller wants to sell as a FSBO but it is an entirely different story if you are also denied your right to have a buyer's agent representing you! I strongly suggest that you try to retain your agent and find some compromise. You are about to make a very big decision, signing binding, legal documents - it would be in your best interest to have somebody guiding you, representing you, negotiating on your behalf and taking care of all the "little" things that need to get done before you can go to closing. All the best!
The next question is do you want to be represented in the transaction? You can and maybe should be represented by a buyers agent. I many time have clients who buy private sales, that want to be represented by a buyers agent, where I am still compensated by the transaction.
The biggest question is how comfortable are you going it alone?
A Buyers Agent can:
- Provide opinion of value
- Negotiate on your behalf
- Bring the experience of 100's of transactions to the table
- Represent your best interests
- Save you time and aggravation
- Protect your interest
There are many, many competent Buyers Agents with years of experience that can bring tons of value to the transaction. If you are not comfortable on your own, do not be bullied into not being represented. Real Estate transaction can be complicated if you do not know what you are doing.
This also depends on how far in the process you are.
Plus, sometimes buyers pay their brokers for the work done with their own funds.
You need someone to represent you in this transaction no matter how easy it looks.
Hope this helps,
Beachfront Realty, Inc.
All the points made about the value of using a buyer agent are quite true. Who priced the property and is it accurate? Are there factors that are not obvious that would affect its value? Who will help you put an offer together and help you through the process? And on and on...
If I were you I'd ask your agent if he/she will help you for a reduced fee, paid by the seller. Assuming you haven't seen lots of property with the agent already, he/she may be glad to help you for a lower fee since you have already found the home.
regardless of the "obligation", it is not a good idea to purchase a property without a knowledgeable professional representing you. You'd be taking a gamble on what is, probably, one of the largest investments you are considering to make now or even in your lifetime. From many years of my experience I found such transactions rarely work out. The home purchase transaction is not a trivial matter for people who do not buy and sell homes all the time.
We are happy to do a CMA for you on the property. This way you will know exactly what it's worth before you start negotiating directly with the seller. It is important that you don't over pay.
Contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org
But, as others have said, you need to have someone working on your side who knows the ins and outs of purchasing and can protect you.
Good luck in your purchase!
However, recognize that there are documents to be completed, documents that probably should be reviewed by professionals, etc. If an agent were involved, he/she would do much or all of that. (Not a formal legal review, which is desirable but which lots of homeowners don't do.) Since your friend doesn't want to pay a commission, then you'll be footing the bill for all of that. Just something to consider.