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Home Buyer in…, Both Buyer and Seller in 30188

Should I use the same agent to sell my home and be my buyer's agent for my new one?

Asked by Home Buyer in Georgia, 30188 Sun Nov 30, 2008

We would like to put our home on the market and buy a new one. With only a certain amount of equity in our home I had considered trying to sell it myself to save on the commission so we will have enough for a downpayment on our next home. Recently though, a Realtor told me that sometimes Realtors can list your home for a smaller commission (at 5% with 3% going to the Buyer's agent) and then act as your buyer's agent with a 1% rebate to you for closing costs (they then get 2% as the buyer's agent). This sounds like a good idea to me, but I was wondering if there is a drawback to using the same agent to sell your home as the one you use to buy your next home? Since we cannot buy our next home until we sell this one, it seems like a great motivating factor for the agent to get ours sold as quickly as possible. Any insight on this? And is this a common practice of discounting the service fees?

Thanks,
Amy
Woodstock, GA

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Answers

49
Hi Amy,

Let me ask you a question. Why would you consider, (other than to save a few $$) not using a trained, skilled professional to represent you in the largest financial transaction(s) you will most likely make in your life? And, then to even consider using somebody who is willing to do it for alot less? That just does not make sense to me. Ask yourself this, "If they are so willing to take money out of their own pocket, how do they feel about my pocket?"

My advice is this; use the same REALTOR for both the Sale & Purchase. Using different REALTORS will put you in the middle of 2 people who with different perspectives on the situation.
Interview a number of REALTORS, and /or TEAMS of REALTORS, it's important to find one you like, but, make sure they are selling homes.

And here's the MOST important thing, you must listen to their advice! You can have the best REALTOR in the world, but if you do not heed their advice, you may not accomplish your goals.

Real estate transactions are complex. A good REALTOR who does their job well, can & should make it look easy. That comes from EXPERIENCE.


Good luck,
Bill Buettner
Century 21 HomeStar
Web Reference: http://www.century21.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
I am hugely concerned with a REALTOR telling a seller that the only thing a REALTOR does is market on the internet. If that is all that is being done then I guess cut rates would be a good idea. Unless you know real estate law, usual customs for your area, have been trained in contracts, tought relevant costs and how to calculate them, have relationship with affilate conpanys like lawyers title companys inspectors and repair people and mortgage companys, understand how a buyers mortgage type effects you the seller, and have time to contact all of these people every day you need a professional. Marketing is key to finding a buyer, but, it is never just about the internet or even the MLS and once that marketing works and a buyer is found then the hardest work really starts and anyone that thinks it is easy has clearly never done it.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
I don't know the value of your homes there in GA, here in CA where prices have gone up significantly and clients are near or under water, a value based business model not only makes good business sense for the consumer, it makes good ethical sense for the agent. Share the savings, earn the reward.

The caution, which many of the fine answers below stated, is experience, skill and trust. Do your homework. Make sure that the agent is able to facilitate your goals while saving you money. Interview and compare. An agent who offers a lower fee is not necessarily an unskilled agent, respectively a full fee agent is not necessarily a skilled agent.
Web Reference: http://www.terrivellios.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Many folks in my market do indeed use the same agent for both transactions. However, I encourage you to do this because you have chosen an agent you trust and like. Anyone can discount their fees ;but if they cannot negotiate their own paycheck, how will they negotiate on your behalf? You really want someone who is going to treat your equity as if its their own! I recommend you choose a listing agent based on the strength of their marketing plan and personal integrity.....and, frankly, someone you simply connect with; then discuss the buying end of the transaction with them. If you are moving to an area they know well, then it makes sense to utilize their skills. If they are not comfortable with the area, they can refer you to someone who is more knowledgeable.

Food for thought: It takes no training or skill to "get" business by discounting fees. In today's market, please choose someone who knows how to get the job done. Real professionals want 'clients for life' and are willing to go the extra mile for you.

Best of luck.
Web Reference: http://www.jerrifurniss.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 1, 2008
Commission is different with every agent. But what would motivate your agent to do everything passable to sell your home at the highest price in the shortest time but work for less then his regular fee?
Would you do your best, if your boss told you that this week, you'll get 3/4 of your wages?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Jul 25, 2009
I am probably one of the most qualified to answer your question. I used to work for a discount realty company that discounted its brokerage fees and gave rebates to buyers. The business model was a disaster. The company had to cut costs one of which was staffing the phones on the weekends. Due to the lack of revenue, the company was forced to hire sub par realtors and support staff .. As a result, the success rate was less than our competition that did not rebate or discount. The company could not pay its bills and it was forced to shut its doors. I was long gone by then as I could see it was doomed. That latest figures are that unrepresented have a 7% chance of success and sell for 29% less than realtor assisted sales. If you hire a qualified agent, you will sell your home faster, for more money and with the fewest complications. Remember, you get what you pay for.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jul 24, 2009
I agree that your agent is more motivated to get your present home sold if they are also working with you to find your new one. Although it is tempting to get a "deal" like you describe, one has to wonder why a successful Realtro would cut their commissions like that. It's not like they will be doing less work. Remember a workman is worthy of his hire.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 1, 2009
Hi Amy,
May you have a blessed New Year!
Let me help you with your question. Should you use the same agent to sell your home and be your buyer's agent for your new home. With the market being a buyer's market, I would recommend you to have representation on both sides. To try to sell your home by yourself in this market, will be difficult. First, your home really needs to stand out from the rest. Most buyer's in this days are already searching the internet, you can not afford not to have an agent to put your home on every possible site he or she has access to. The company I work with has been very successful in getting your home out there and we have the knowledge in working with someone relocating. As far, as having the same agent being your buyer's agent. It does not cost you anything to have a buyer's agent. Why wouldn't you want to use your agent for that as well, especially if you are looking in the same area. He or She should know the area and can be very helpful to you. It's NOT a good thing to have 2 different Realtors. You will only find frustration between the two and you in the middle.
Do yourself a favor and list your home first and see how much traffic you are getting. It can take time or you may be lucky like me and sell your home within 10 days. Yes, that did happen in 2008.
Well, hope this is helpful and Good Luck!
Sandra Hordos
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 2, 2009
Amy,

In any business the objective when hiring a professional is loyalty. I place my credibility on the fact that I give 100% to sellers in an effort to sell their homes. This means extensive marketing, open houses and numerous methods to market the property. Therefore, why wouldn't a seller, who sees how hard that you work, use the same realtor as their buyer's agent? It's not about one sale; it's about building your reputation in any given area so you continue to get referral business.

So if you placed your trust in an agent or broker to sell your home, it is only makes sense to use the same agent on the buy side. That is, is the agent is familiar with the area and the market. If not, I would rely on your seller’s agent to find you a reputable buyer’s agent if it is outside of his/her area.

Finally, what you are paying for in commission is for a service and an area of specialized expertise. Be careful if you are looking at a “low cost” service as you get what you pay for!

Good Luck!
Frank
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 26, 2008
Hi Amy,

Our market is very different than that of other states and countries. This is in fact, an extremely tough market right now so you'll have to pull out all the stops.

To answer your question, it is VERY advantageous to use the same realtor to market your home and then assist you with your new purchase. The listing agent will be doubly motivated to see your current home close because the bulk of his/her paycheck will arrive when you purchase your new one. Much of the listing commission will go towards the marketing of your home. The commission is always negotiated up-front in this market and yes, it can be discounted. It is common practice for a realtor to discount the listing commission with a signed Buyer's Rep agreement on the purchase of your new home.

As far as rebating goes, it can be done, though a little tricky. It has to be disclosed on the HUD, which is the statement at closing that discloses all of the fees and costs affiliated with your transaction. Many lenders, especially nowadays with the lending scrutiny resulting from the recent expontential mortgage fraud, will frown upon rebating. Verify with your lender!

Much luck with your endeavor! If you're interviewing agents, I'd love to apply for the job! I live and sell in Cherokee County and I'd love to help you arrive at a solution to help you with your down payment issue.

Take Care,

Jana Bryant
404-409-1351
Coldwell Banker RMR
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 9, 2008
Hello Amy, I am a REALTOR in Canada, so my answer might not be correct in your region, but it works for my clients and me. My THREE RULES in the 2008/2009 REAL ESTATE MARKET.
#1 ....sell your home first. (you can select a late completion date, to suit you). Never Buy before Selling.
#2 make sure your agent gets a good deposit for your property and verifies the buyers ability to buy your home. That means checking their credit history and Identification. (This is a must)
#3 Commission is Negotiable... Negotiate commission only when there is a signed offer in front of you.
Note..these rules change, just like our Market.,
Andrew Paluch, Sutton Group Elite, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, 905 848 9800
Web Reference: http://AndrewPaluch.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 8, 2008
I already added my answer in detail. Perhaps what you should do is ask your attorney, home inspector, your title company, and your appraiser and your mortgage broker to cut their fees, and the loan officer to give you back half his fee, same thing for the attorney, and all the other professionals involved. After all, if you use the same title company twice, once for the sale of your home and once again to register title in the purchase of your new home, that's 2 transactions they are making money on, so they need to give you back half their fee from the first transaction. Same thing for your attorney. If he is representing you in both transactions, the sale transaction and the purchase transaction, have him give you back his fee for the first transcation, in order to get a fee for doing the other transaction. After all, you are giving the attorney work twice, so he should only charge you once? Right? In summary, the job is to sell the house. Another job is to help you buy a new house. You shouldn't have the listing agent give you back half his listing side of the commission i order to get the listing, so they can then represent you as a buyer's agent when you sell your home and buy a new one.

In summary, use the same agent twice. You've built a relationship and trust with this person. Use the same attorney twice. Use the same Title company twice. Each professional needs to be paid per-transaction. You are not asking any of the other professionals to give you half their fee from the first transaction to do the other transaction and your Real Estate Professional should be treated with same level of respect.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 4, 2008
Hi Amy,
I see no reason why not to use the same Realtor with whom you've built a relationship with. The thing to keep in mind is that a Realtor's first priority(or should be), is you the client. I have successfully represented many many clients over the years in both selling their properties, as well as assisting them in finding new properties for purchase. In each instance, the client's best interests were always my first priority. That has always served me well and guaranteed success for my clients.

Over the years, I have developed a network of experienced, seasoned Realtors all over the country with whom I "partner" with. At times my clients, or family and/or friends of my clients, have needed real estate assistance outside my area of expertise (Southern California). At those times, I have always referred those people to the abovementioned "network of agents" I trust and have personally worked with. I have even referred my own family members (who live on the east coast and in the south) to my "out of area partners".

At the end of the day, it's all about building strong relationships....between client and Realtor, and between Realtors themselves.

I hope I've put your mind at ease, best of luck and let me know if I can assist in any way.

Warmest Regards & Holiday Wishes,
Michael-Shawn O'Leary
Coldwell Banker Previews International
310-889-4546 / 949-280-2190
Please Visit My Website At:
HTTP://WWW.THEOLEARYTEAM.COM
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Amy,
WOW!! Yes you should use the same Realtor to sell and buy building a relationship with your real estate professional is very important...but..... make it a quality one I never met anyone that was good at what they do say to thier boss "I think you pay me to much for what I do so let me work this week for free" that is what this Realor is offering you. I do not know this person so I do not mean to make a judgment against them but a professional that knows that they are good at what they do do not have to discount. I wish getting the buying side would be motivation but I worry the Realtor will grow resentment that they are having to provide full service and not get full pay. Wouldn't you? Even worse they might not provide full service and you could suffer for that in length of time on the market. If you were on trial there are lots of lawyers you could choose. would you want the overworked legal aid one or the $1000.00 an hour one....I would want the best I could get and doesn't the best cost more. For to long the public and Realtors alike have not fostered an air of professionalism but it really can make a difference.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Before I became a RE/MAX agent, I was the broker in charge of a realty company that offered almost the same program that you described. I left the company one year before they went out of business. The old adage that "you get what you pay for" applies and here's why. When a realtor on the listing end discounts his or her brokerage fee, something has to be cut on their end. This may come in the form of less marketing, the quality of the agent, or the service the company provides. All three are extremely important, especially in today's market. For example, phones weren't answered on weekends when agents or buyers wanted to schedule showings. So, as a result, the properties took longer to sell and sold for less with more complications. On the buying end, if a listing agent, decides to work for less than his or her "competition", imagine the quality of what he or she brings to your transaction. Ask yourself, if your employer told you that you are now earning one third less than you were yesterday. How hard will you work today?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Great question, Amy. Most agents and Realtors PREFER clients like you (someone who is selling and buying). Both you and your Realtor will be working closely together toward a common goal of helping you move. With one agent versus two, you potentially eliminate duplication of some tasks (i.e. communication) as well as having to coordinate transaction activities with more than one person.

With respect to fees, it is between you and the agent. I suggest that you interview at least three (3) full-time professional Realtors for the job of selling your home and helping you to locate your next one. As a business owner, I must closely look at each prospective client and what they & their home bring to the table in the business arrangement. Is the home sellable (good condition with no repairs needed, desireable location/neighborhood/schools, active competition, sold comparables, etc.)? Are the prospective clients' expectations realistic (both in selling and buying)? Do I believe that there is good chemistry or a personality match between the prospective client and myself? Is there a mutually feeling of trust, dedication and commitment for the parties to work together and openly communicate throughout the selling and buying process?

You are correct in assuming that there is a "motivating factor" for your agent to sell your home since you will be unable to buy your next home until you do. However, for my seller clients who are moving out-of-town or out-of-state, I still must perform in order to be compensated or paid by successfully geting their home closed and sold. Therefore, in your case, the only real incentive (if you will) is that I can earn more by selling another home to an existing client.

As far as possible draw-backs to using the same agent or Realtor to sell & buy a home, the location of your next home will play a factor. If you are leaving the general area of your existing home and moving more than 30 minutes away, perhaps you will want to select a buyer's agent who lives in & knows the market well and most likely better than your listing agent.

In my business, I rely heavily on past client referrals to neighbors, family and friends. Whether selling, buying or both, my team and I strive to provide all of our clients with the personal service they want with the professional skills they need to get the job done. Best wishes - Ted
Web Reference: http://MyGeorgiaHomes.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
TED SHOOP, Real Estate Pro in Buford, GA
MVP'08
Contact
I think you really need to look at both of the transactions differently. You should not try to package both of them with related commission structures... You should use the same agent if you feel comfortable doing so. Interview the agent who is selling your home on their skills as a selling agent... Ask questions about past sales, marketing methods, and so on.... The commission in my opinion should be the last thing you discuss.... Stay away from discount brokers who offer low commissions.. They will not be able to attract the most qualified buyers if they do not pay a decent wage to the other agents in the area.... If they do not offer a decent commission split, less agents will show your home... That will hurt you in the long run.... Now as far as using your selling agent as a buyers agent, that would be okay... However you should interview your agent in respects to their buyer representation skill. Ask them if they have a buyers designation, such as ABR or CBR. These two designations require comprehensive courses in becoming a Buyers agent.... Additionally a good buyers agent will be able to find you the best possible house for the money you have to spend... and the best part... most of the time they get their commission from the sale not from your pocket...
Web Reference: http://www.avidrealtor.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Amy,
When using the same agent for BOTH transactions...I'm assuming that you've chosen the BEST agent in your area to sell your home & purchase another in the same area. A VETERAN agent will end up saving you in the long run because of their experience & negotiating skills. You may not see the savings in writing / set in stone.....but you will see an INCREASE in the amount of money that you net on your current home - which will offset the amount of cash that you end up having to put down on the NEW purchase.

ANY agent that will "give away" THEIR money (reduce their commission) upon request - will DEFINITELY be willing to "give away" your money if requested. You'd be better off going with a STRONG negotiator from the "git go".

Best of luck & Happy House Hunting!
Web Reference: http://www.GolfHomePros.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Amy,
If I were in need of a major medical operation, after receiving more than one opinion of the necessity and possible complications that may take place, I would choose someone who was proficient, professional, and had certain characteristics (personality is one!) that I would consider important in a working relationship with me. If by chance the medical tests came back that I would also have to have a follow up procedure that was directly related to the first, it would only be a logical conclusion that I would employ the same professional to do both! Unfortunately, many do not think of a real estate agent in this same manner yet they are usually talking about one of the biggest investments of their life!
I have no qualms about handling the marketing of my client's home and also finding them a new one. We have established not only a business relationship of trust, but also have established a personal commitment to each other. You do not want someone representing you who feels they can "discount" their worth! This situation would really concern me if they are willing to negotiate both sides of selling your initial home (representing both you and the new buyer).
If you have truly found a professional in the field of real estate, you will not want anyone else to look out for your best interests! Just like the medical professional in the above example, you should be able to continue to count on them in the future for any advice and information long after your deals have closed. This type of relationship can only exist if you take your time and interview, check credentials, and references!
Good Luck!

Sheri Smith, ABR,CRS,GRI
Sales Associate/Relocation
Prudential Fox & Roach REALTORS
Haddonfield, NJ 08033
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
I think it's a great idea....your agent can navigate both sides of the transaction...they know your needs...it makes sense.
Web Reference: http://www.cindihagley.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 30, 2008
Cindi Hagley,…, Real Estate Pro in San Ramon, CA
MVP'08
Contact
SURE, it is a GREAT idea agents dont get paid till you sell your current home, and purchase your next
Web Reference: http://www.lynn911.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 30, 2008
I would strongly recommend that you find an agent you like and trust to help you sell your current home and buy your next home, provided you are staying in the same area. If you are moving to a new area, I would ask your selling agent to recommend someone in the area you are relocating to.

As to the practice of discounting the commission if the same agent handles both transactions, I see nothing wrong with that. That is an individual choice each agent, along with their broker should make.

Some have said that because an agent will negotiate on their own commission, that they would not work as hard for their client as someone who would not. Speaking only for myself, I would respectfully disagree because my work ethic is not determined by my commission, it is determined by my character. If I agree to accept a lower commission because my client has agreed to work with me to buy and sell their next home, I will do my best to look out for my clients best interest regardless of that agreement. Accepting that agreement binds me to do the very best I can in all that I do! I know that if I serve my client well and they make a successful transition to their new home, I get the satisfaction of knowing I did a great job for them. I also hope they would be able to recommend me to their family, friends and neighbors as an agent who is committed the highest quality work ethic and that I did my best for them every step of the way!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 14, 2014
Dear Amy, when an agent negotiates on his commission, he shows he is not a very strong agent. I advise you to get the toughest agent you can in order to sell your house for the most money. However, keep in mind that a very busy agent, will want to list it at a lower price so it gets sold very quickly. In that case, you will get less money for it. So, try to interview agents and see who you are most comfortable with, remember this is a new short/long term relationship for you! I advise you to get a different agent to buy your new house, and then as soon as you find it, try to negotiate a long closing. Then put your house on the market at the right price, with the same agent. Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 12, 2014
Amy: If you have a good relationship with your agent, it is a good idea to use that agent for both transactions. There would be no conflict of interest because your agent represents you as the seller on the sale of your home and represents you as the buyer on the purchase of the new one. My team and I offer listing discounts if the home seller lists their home with us and also buys a home from us. The additional transaction helps us cover the expenses involved with selling the old home. My broker is not a discount broker, so we offer full service. Please let me know if I can be of assistance and see my website for listings in Woodstock and the surrounding area. Thanks!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 10, 2010
Hi Amy:

i would highly recommend using the same realtor especially if you have a favorable relationship with this person. Saying on the commission well basically its is from the net of the sale. Asking your broker to cut their commission may work however its highly unlikely. Some brokers may consider offering you a break on their side of the transaction. All depends on the firms positions on the transactions. I would recommend asking your broker about this.

If you recall once there was a company that listed all properties on MLS for 1%. Brokers would not show the properties due to them receiving 1/4 of 1/2%. So, think about who you want to market your home and to represent you for the buy as well..
Good Luck in your search..
Betty Stroll 203-682-4327
email: strollb@raveisre.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 10, 2010
Amy,

Wow, all kind of answers.. hopefully you aren't too confused. You'll discover that agents will have all types of spin on why we should or should not reduce a commission. My take on it is this: I'd rather develop a long term relationship with you and make it affordable for you to be able to sell your home so that you can become a buyer in this market. If I help you sell your home so you can buy, I receive two transactions. I am predominantly a listing agent whom the buyers I work with are the seller's of homes I've sold. I do offer a "multiple transaction" discount. I also reward clients for referrals within legal limits. It's just makes business sense to be willing to do whatever it takes to help you accomplish your goal. Now, to answer the argument that if an agent is willing to give away his/her commission to you, how are they going to not negotiate your sales price and not give away your money? That's an easy one... I don't negotiate my commission on single transaction sales. I do reward the customer for multiple transactions. Look at it as purchasing at BJ's wholesale club as opposed to 7 Eleven. You are rewarded for buying more items with better pricing. If I can help you sell your home and if it would be of value to see my extensive marketing plan and commission structure that is designed to suit your needs that I actually let you choose, then please give me a call. I'd love to be your agent if you haven't already hired one.

David Brower
Crye-Leike Realtors, Assistant Manager/Realtor
678-982-9600
Web Reference: http://www.davidwbrower.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 22, 2009
Amy,

I believe it is a good idea to work with one Realtor because that Realtor wil get to know you very well during the course of your relationship. It also will eliminate any "procuring causes" incidents between Realtors. Most Realtors work very hard to get clients, and to have repeat clients. Your time is very valuable and working with one Realtor would be a greater benefit then trying to adjust between two of them. As far as buying your next home, you can always write an offer with a contingency of selling your own home. Your Realtor should be able to explain this more in depth to you. As far as discount prices, I see this as an incentive that some Realtors do have because it is a competitive market. I, for one, use a discounted fee on some of my listings. I do this in order to get the listing over any competitors, to help the client if they are in a financial hardship, and I also look at it as a means of me being able to obtain leads from phone calls and getting another sale if the particular home that I have listed is not what they are looking for. Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 10, 2008
Hire your Realtor based on their skills and the level of trust you feel you can place in them. I do caution listing with someone who discounts their fee coming through the door especially when they're willing to give more than half of it away. You definitely want a Realtor who knows the value of their own worth. Hire someone with a strong marketing plan based on accurate comps. with sharp negotiation skills and you're guaranteed to get the most bang for your buck. The question you need to ask yourself is how can I get from point A to point B and stay within my budget, find a Realtor who can help you with that and you win all the way around.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
Hi Amy,

You need to be a little cautious of an agent and their ability to wear two hats at once and still represent you without conflict. If that does not bother you than It cannot hurt to try to work a deal.
If not go with your original idea and self market. You can definitely do exactly what an agent will do-use the Internet- to market your property. So go for it.
Go to my site and get my free ebook to help you.

All the best,
James Joseph
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 4, 2008
Amy, I totally agree with gregory moe, Realtor. Work with a Realtor. Interview and find someone you trust - someone who knows the area and will tell you negatives along with positives of areas, subdivisions, individual homes.
NOT someone who is looking to sell you something just to make the sale!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 4, 2008
Hi Amy,

You've elicited a lot af answers to your question. You have been given some good advice and some not-so good.

That said, in the various answers, the words 'Realtor' and 'realtor' are used casually by the respondents. In the State of Washington, all licensed real estate agents are referred to as 'licensees'. However, not all licensees are REALTORS. REALTORS are members of the National Association of REALTORS, a trade organization. REALTORS are, professionally, held to a higher standard, that being the REALTOR Code of Ethics.

Whether you decide to use the same agent for your sale and purchase is, obviously, up to you. I would like to suggest, however, that you seriously consider using a REALTOR.

Respectfully,

Gregory Moe
Windermere Real Estate/Olympia
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 4, 2008
Great Question!
Please remember, if other answers suggest that you use the same agent it is because then they do not have to share the commission with an agent representing you, the buyer.
An agent has specialties which is very detailed and demanding. Each area of expertise can be accomplished as an expert in only one field. Transactional agents in Florida try to do both. Many not very well.
Remember your primary goal. 1. Sell the home. 2. Get top dollar. 3. Sell it in your lifetime.
To accomplish these goals you must choose wisely. Experienced listing agent to sell, experienced buyers agent to buy. Not transactional. Go to http://www.sunnyspotrealty.net/BuyersagentFlorida to read about agency relationships.
Getting a discount on the commission is asking for trouble. You get what you pay for. Selling and buying the biggest investment of your life is not the place to skimp.
I had one that never even showed up at closing and never told the out of state buyer that it actually closed. Never checked the paperwork. That is only the tip of the Real Estate iceburg.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 4, 2008
Great Question!
An agent has specialties which is very detailed and demanding. Each area of expertise can be accomplished as an expert in only one field. Transactional agents in Florida try to do both. Many not very well.
Remember your primary goal. 1. Sell the home. 2. Get top dollar. 3. Sell it in your lifetime.
To accomplish these goals you must choose wisely. Experienced listing agent to sell, experienced buyers agent to buy. Not transactional. Go to http://www.sunnyspotrealty.net/BuyersagentFlorida to read about agency relationships.
Getting a discount on the commission is asking for trouble. You get what you pay for. Selling and buying the biggest investment of your life is not the place to skimp.
I had one that never even showed up at closing and never told the out of state buyer that it actually closed. Never checked the paperwork. That is only the tip of the Real Estate iceburg.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 4, 2008
If you are moving into another home in the same general area, I would definitely use the same agent for both the sale of your present home and purchase of your new home.

Establishing a trusting relationship between yourself and your Realtor is an important part of any transaction.
It is in your mutual best interest to get the best price and terms on the sale of your present home and that relationship just naturally flows into the finding and purchase of your new home.

It is also very beneficial to have the same Title/Escrow Company for both transactions.
Web Reference: http://Janetlanz.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
You are absolutely right! Using the same broker to sell your home and buy the next home is a real advantage to you. Your broker knows your requirements, has your motivation first and foremost as he/she markets your home. The professional broker will help with both transactions, counsel you along the way and work with attorneys, other borkers and become a great resource.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
I'll answer this question as a consumer, not an agent. I've been a consumer for 45 years, buying and selling, and taken advantage of by people on both ends. I'v been a Realtor for 3 1/2 years. So, I've seen both sides. Here is the answer. What is your goal? Keep this in the forfront of all you do with these transactions.
Is it to save a few dollars? Or is it to move up to your new home? I tell my clients that as a consumer I felt that I always paid more than I should have when buying. But here is the point. I GOT THE HOUSE I WANTED.
Time and inflation will take care of paying a few dollars more. A SMART buyer who bids too low on a house winds up not getting the house. How smart is that? Now, you need a GREAT agent to guide you. And how would feel if your boss tells you, this week you work for half pay. You get what you pay for. When selling your home, be more conserned with the commission you pay then lowering the price. You get more agents to work for you, and you really don't set the selling price anyway, the buyer does. If you get more offers with more agents working for you, you may wind up with more than if you paid a low commission. Now don't get me wrong, you must price it right, not high, even a little lower than you competition. A few good offers will take care of the lower price. Good luck. Kenneth Cole, Staten Island
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Well Amy, it depends. How good is the agent? Agents who negotiate on their fee, are not the best agents to use to sell your home. When it comes to presenting an offer on your home, and negotiating, you want the best possible, don't you? Shop around, interview agents, get a feel for them, make sure you like them, since you will be communicating with them often, and ask them for references, houses they've sold before. As to using them to buy your new house, if they are very busy agents, they won't have a lot of time to show houses. Find an agent you like, go to open houses and get a feel for the agent. New agents are usually willing to show you more properties and they have more time to do so. You can ask agents to discount their fees and give you rebated, but it will discourage the best agents from working with you. It is not a common practice in my area. hope this was helpful. Diana Saiz, coldwell Banker Coral Gables Fl.
Web Reference: http://DianaSaiz.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Hi, i am Diana Burton, a real estate agent with IsaBell K. Horsley R.E. Ltd., in Mathews VA. I have been in the business for 32 years, of which 28 in The Netherlands, and 4 here in America. To answer your question. The most important part of a real estate transaction is, that you have a trusted agent, who will take your interests at heart and understands you. If you have one, there is no reason you cannot use him/her to buy and sell a house. And yes, you could ask him/her for a small reduction if you are doing both transactions with them. To me that is completely logical.

I agree that trying to sell your house on your own, usually does not work. The agents have many more tools to disseminate information regarding the house on the multiple listing systems, via their websites etc.

Hope this helps,
regards,
Diana Burton, Realtor,
IsaBell K. Horsley R.E. Ltd,
Mathews, VA
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
You asked two questions. Possibly Selling FSBO,question-1
and question-2 was how to reduce the commission to the
listing agent, to then work with you when he represents you
in buying a home.

I don't know the values of homes in Georgia,
but here in New Jersey, prices have remained steady
in some areas, and have gone down in other areas.
The majority of prices are not the major factor
in today's market, but the ability of a buyer, to get
financing, or get a mortgage, is a very big factor in
the ability to sell a home.

You mentioned that you thought about being a FSBO. Let me
address that concern or issue firstly. A good listing agent
is not only a good negotiator, but also someone that can have
an aggressive marketing strategy in marketing your home.
Your home should be advertised not just locally, but nationally.
It should be listed in several MLS systems, if that is the case
in your area. For example, in NJ, we have the Hudson County MLS,
the Garden State MLS, and the NJMLS. That way, any buyer, from any
part of the state, not just the local county, can see the property
via their buyer's agent. A listing agent doesn't just advertise
the property to buyer's, but also to buyer's agents, and thus,
gives it an amplified effect in terms of the marketing strategy.

If you sell on your own, your advertising budget limits you to
the newspapers in your local area. A listing agent takes upon
the advertising costs upon themselves.

National Statics show, that home owners that listed their
home with an agent, rather than marketing it themselves, usually
got a higher price at the negotiation table compared to a seller
that was not represented by an agent. In addition, by being
presented by an agent, you eliminate the "tire-kickers" that
are just looking at houses and instead of only working with
qualified buyers whose credit has been checked via a mortgage
pre-qualification letter and some sense of seriousness about
the purchase process. If you put a FSBO sign by the front door,
the only reason the buyers want to work with the owner, is that
they too want to also save the commission and at that point, you
are usually working with buyers that will give you low-ball offers.

Also, most sellers have sold only one home in their lives, their-own.
They are not emotionally detached enough from the sale process to
act as a good negotiator. Agents, on the other hand, do this for
a living, and have negotiated hundreds of transactions cooly and calmly,
and this puts them in a detached, and cool handed approach to the
selling/buying negotiation process and puts a cool, calm "middle-man"
between you and the buyer, or between you and the buyer's agent.


In terms of how you want to structure the commission structure.
My advise is to use the same agent, firstly as a listing agent,
in selling your home and secondly, as a buyer's agent in helping you
buy a new home. I would not tie the commission of the sale of your
home in any fashion to the purchase of the new home. Selling your home
should have nothing to do with you buying a new one. Your listing
agent still has to perform a good job in selling, and should not be
so desperate to sell, to earn a living to earn the other half of the commission
from the listing side of the agreement in helping you buy. You are putting
your agent in a weak negotation position. He is desperate to sell, at all
cost, just because he can't earn his portion of the listing commission,
becuase he only gets it when he helps you buy your new home.

As yourself this question: Is anybody that can't fight for their own money and their own living going to
help you fight for your money?

Any agent that puts the consumer first, above their own interest or that of the brokerage is the agent you want. That agent has your best interests at heart. This is the very meaning behind feduciary responsibility. In reality, some agents are better at working with sellers and some agents are better at working with buyers. The agent that typically works with buyers knows more about how to get the buyer qualified and get financing. The listing agent that works with sellers often knows more about an effective marketing
campaing of web and newspaper advertising. These are justgeneralizations I am making, and in my area, I typically work with both, buyers and sellers. A good agent knows how to work equally well in representing you as a seller, when selling your home, and equally well in getting you a good deal as a buyer's agent, in
helping you buy a home. Do not structure the listing side of the commission that the agent gives you back half of it when he works with you in actingas a buyer's agent representing you in the purchase of your new home.

You wouldn't want to be paid half the money for a job fully done, and neigther does your agent. The job is selling the house. Period. Buying a different house is a different job.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
I am not familiar with GA. In Missouri in my MLS we work as lsiting/buyers agents all the time. We do not lower the commission rate. In working with our client as both we are able to speak to a seller as your buying agent knowing where you are as a seller. If I was working as a buying agent I would not know what your status is as a seller. It would be like having one car salesman working your trade in and and another trying to sell you a new car. Does the new car sale know if you are actually going to trade your car in. It seems to me a lot of extra communication for someone. The old saying "you get what you pay for" I feel is still true today. Find a good agent and put them to work for you..
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Hi Amy,
All the answers you have received thus far are completely valid. As a consumer of services I want to know who has my interests at the forefront of their value system. This is where representation comes in so by all means, get the best. A Realtor is a real estate professional and is required to put your interests above theirs and the Brokerage. An agent who immediately reduces their commission just to get the business may not understand their value to you, but may be new to the world of real estate and still be an awesome negotiator. Test the waters and see what your ability is to get out of the listing agreement and/or buyer representation agreement. If you want to read about how to hire a real estate professional and other news about real estate please visit my website at the referenced web address.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Amy, you are on the right track. My advice is to find a good Realtor to do both transactions. Ask for a discount on the listing commission to help you lower the sales price. A good agent is one that will help you get through tough economic times with more of your hard-earned equity. It is more economically feasible to request the discount if an agent is doing two transactions and not at all unreasonable. If the agent cannot do that, it is probably because of high franchise fees of his/her broker. Some of the more well-know companies just can't be as flexible as the smaller companies and they have convinced their agents that sellers really need that big company name. The big company name does have the advantage of attracting more listings, but not necessarily more buyers and those listings all end up in the MLS's and are advertised accordingly. Notice I said "Realtor." A Realtor is one who has joined a Board of Realtors and has taken additional ethics training. The listings of Realtors are all shown on Realtor.com whether they work for a well-known company or a smaller, more independent firm. I have had good success selling homes even in this "down" market and can help you with this if you need my services. Good luck!
Web Reference: http://atlantadeb.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 3, 2008
Amy,

Weaker agents will routinely discount fees. Typically these agents are poor negotiators and could hurt you in the long run.

I'm for using the listing agent of your home for your purchase if you are staying in the same general area. Should you decide to move an hour or more away, then have your listing agent refer you to a buyer's agent that specializes in the area you wish to move to.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 1, 2008
Joshua Jarvis, Real Estate Pro in Duluth, GA
MVP'08
Contact
Amy,

Alot of people use the same Realtor to sell and then buy a home. The key is for you to make sure that your Realtor is working for you and with you. Communication is very important. Your Realtor should get to know you and what you want. You should feel comfortable and be able to trust your Realtor. You should also be able to work together as a team. In this market it will take a team effort and as long as both parties are giving a 100% you should have a successful business relationship. As long as you price your home right and have an agent that knows how to work the market. In this market Realtors have to be creative and hard working. Ask your Realtor what they will do for you to assist you in selling your home. If putting up a sign and listing it on the MLS is all they offer you should look for other Realtors in your area. You may want to ask several Realtors so you have an idea of what others are doing to sell in your area. If your Realtor is willing to give their all in selling your home then they are worthy of helping you purchase your new home as well. I grew up in the Woodstock/Acworth area, Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 1, 2008
Amy -

It's a common event to use an agent to cover both sides - but understand that the key to success is a thorough vetting of any agent. You should conduct interviews of several agents and agents from different companies. The initial challenge will be getting your home sold in this market - that will come from a comprehensive and multi-leveled marketing plan lead by and agent skilled in the SELLING process; many agents jumped in during the big rush and have no idea how to work a "real" market.

Two last points - if you don't price your home correctly it will not sell regardless of how much marketing you do. Have at least three agents prepare THOROUGH market analysis for you - not the standard nonsense. There might be a difference between what you want and what you're told - be careful of agents telling you what you want to hear as opposed to what you should hear - remember that this home will have to be appraised if it goes under contract and appraisers/underwriters are not playing fast and loose these days.

Second, you will likely be given recommendations by your agent to put your home in the best light - consider what you are told. I'm cutting homes for my buyer clients right off the desktop; I pull comps, pull the history of the listing, review Google satellite photos and pull appraisal data on homes that work for my clients - we do not go out to the field until prospective homes clear many hurdles. You don't want your home to die on the desk - the three critical legs for a successful sale are PRICE - EXPOSURE - APPEAL; if even one is out of whack you will sit.

Obviously I'd like an opportunity to compete for your business; you can see the broad strokes of what we do by hitting this link http://www.hrmiller.com/selling-your-home.asp

If we can give you a hand please let us know -

Hank Miller, SRA, ABR
Associate Broker & Certified Appraiser
Prudential Georgia Realty
678-428-8276
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 1, 2008
Amy,

If you are selling and buying simultaneously, it would serve you well to do so by exercising great caution. On the other hand, it you are taking these measures one step at a time, by selling first and then buying, you will be able to enjoy a certain level of comfort.

There are a couple of very important factors that enter the picture when dealing with this process. First, it is important to identify an agent that has a commanding understanding of your local market, and embraces a well tooled comprehensive marketing plan that meets both buying and selling needs.

Secondly, it is absolutely imperative that you as the customer have trust in the agent and are comfortable working with the individual. A positive working relationship will go a long way to help you work together toward a successful and rewarding experience.

If you are taking the two step approach, you will be able to enjoy the benefit of getting to know the agent and how they work with you during the first leg of your journey. If it didn't feel good.......we recommend, moving on to other options.

Good luck,
The Eckler Team
Michael Saunders & Company
billeckler@michaelsaunders.com
941-408-5363

2008 Five Star Award for Outstanding Customer service
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 1, 2008
Yes, assuming you are moving within the same general area you are selling. Many agents offer discounts as you mentioned.
Web Reference: http://maxsell.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 1, 2008
Mrs. Hickman,

You'll want to give some thought to your destination. How familiar is your listing agent with your destination area? If the agent offers little experience there, it may present a challenge for you all. However, that agent can also refer you to an agent that offers more familiarity with the area for a referral fee.

Yes, fee discounts are common in the scenario that you described, but I personally don't support commission rebates.

Separately, some new construction communities are willing to buy your home in exchange for your buying one of theirs with certain conditions. So it may not even be necessary to sell yours before you buy.

Finally, at least one well-known regional lender offers 100% financing for those who have owned a home, but does not currently own one. So don't get too hung up on how much you'll need to bring to closing to buy your next home.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 1, 2008
Dear Amy,
This is not an uncommon practice and many agents offer similar arrangements.
But start with your goal in mind and hire the most aggressive and competent Realtor you can find.
Experience counts, and an experienced Realtor can often help you sell your home faster (time is money) and at a higher price (and money is, of course, money). Their skill can more than offset discounted services and you will come out well ahead.
If you would like to learn more about our skill and experience, please call or email us anytime.
Sincerely,
Karen and Warren Owen
RE/MAX Communities
770-722-0099
WarrenOwen@remax.net
KarenOwen@remax.net
Honing our skills since 1980
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 30, 2008
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