Sage, Home Owner in Brooklyn, NY

I would want to pay the brokers commission only at closing. Any problems with that? Thank you in advance for your thoughts on this matter.

Asked by Sage, Brooklyn, NY Sat May 11, 2013

A private house for sale by multiple owners. Concerned about having to pay a commission when the sale doesn't go thru but reason's beyond our control.

Help the community by answering this question:


Hi Sage - As everyone has already stated generally commission is paid at closing. We work in advance for you, for nothing to get the job done. Is there something you are not telling us here?
What would be beyond your control if all owner' s agree to sell?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat May 11, 2013
Hi Ms. Padovano: Someone told us (the sellers) that there are many things beyond our control that could interfere with or prevent the final sale from taking place, and that we would be liable (examples not given). Up to and including the one of the sellers backing out, because of complications caused by legal problems.
Oy. If I am vague, it is because I am asking on someone's behalf.
Thanks for your thoughtful response.
Sincerely, Sage
Flag Sun May 12, 2013
Generally commission is paid at closing out of the proceeds of the sale; if you have specific concerns, discuss with your agent...
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat May 11, 2013
Commission is typically paid at the closing. Is there some reason that you believe your agent will ask to be paid beforehand?

Jennifer Sayad, Esq.
Attorney at Law
NYS Lic. Real Estate Assoc. Broker
Neuhaus Realty, Inc.
Direct: (917) 499-9832
Fax: (718) 987-3225
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 29, 2013
Generally the commission Is earned when an agent brings forth a ready, willing and able buyer and there's a meeting of the minds between the buyer and seller now typically haven't said that payment for this is usually done at the closing table from the proceeds of the sale.

Thanks Felix
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 11, 2013
The commission is due technically when the broker has bought you a ready, willing and able buyer with an offer that you the seller has accepted. That said the buyer normally has some contingencies; such as getting a mortgage etc., but upon the buyer fulfilling all of their contingencies and the title being clear to close the commission is due.
The commission is generally paid at the closing when the funds are available from the proceeds of the sale for the convenience of the seller.
But your question seems to infer that you, and in this case many people becoming one seller. Are not all in agreement to sell? Most listing agreements do include a line or two referring to the fact that you are the owner and are authorized to sell the property.
Also you will need an attorney to represent you (collectively) as the seller for the contract of sale.
Have you consulted an attorney for an opinion on if you can even list the house for sale?
It is not just brokers commissions that you need to concern yourself with, but a buyer that has a contract of sale has a claim to the property as well. A seller or one member of the collective seller cannot just change their mind, once a contract is signed. This is called willful default.
Consult an attorney, before you list your property for sale.
Hope this helps answer some questions.
Kathryn Lilly, Broker
Realty on the Greene, LLC
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 11, 2013
Dear Ms. Lilly, Thank you for your thoughtful response. I appreciate it very much. Best regards, Sage
Flag Sat May 11, 2013
Dear Sage:

99.9% of the time the real estate agent or broker will not get paid until the closing actually takes place. The only exception would be if the buyers were ready to close as per the parameters of the contract of sale and the seller willfully defaulted on the contract of sale and refused to close.

That is a rarity and the fact is that even under those circumstances a lwasuit would usually insue and most owners and real estate brokers are not going to take it that far.

Ultimately, I would say you do not have to lose sleep over this concern. If you want to discuss this further, contact me direct. If the property you are selling is in Brooklyn, I would like to find out more about it. Maybe I would have a good buyer for you! Either way, good luck!

Mitchell Feldman
Associate Broker/ Director of Sales
Madison Estates & Properties
718-645-1665/ 917-805-0783
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 11, 2013
FYI... Although it is true that in a typical listing agreement it will state that the broker is due a fee when they secure a ready, willing and able buyer giving an offer which the homeowner accepts, it is difficult or next to impossible for a broker to collect a fee if the deal does not go into contract and close. Smart attorneys know how to make sure their client (the seller) does not pay a fee unless and until the deal closes.
Flag Mon May 13, 2013
Broker's commission is always paid at the closing. This should also be written into your exclusive broker agreement so that all parties are aware of their obligations.

Rachel Poggi
Vice President/Associate Broker
Douglas Elliman
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 11, 2013
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