Due to our economy What are your thoughts on charging buyers an upfront fee prior to showing listings and credit the fee once a transaction is close

Asked by Helene Moore, Henderson, NV Thu Jun 9, 2011

Help the community by answering this question:

+ web reference
Web reference:

Answers

47
Mark Fleysher, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Fri Jun 10, 2011
BEST ANSWER
Chris presented a great answer. He's 100% correct... charging that upfront fee likely stems from having multiple showings that lead nowhere.... one thing to remember, is that this is inevitable, but you can definitely minimize your losses by having a strong pre-qualification system yourself, kinda like your lender does.

Prepare a script, like Chris recommends, that asks specific questions... also, avoid showing properties to persons who will be getting a mortgage before they are pre-qualified. If they are willing to see if the qualify, they are more likely to be serious buyers.

I personally would not charge an upfront fee (except for short sale sellers), as this will turn away many, if not all, of your buyers.




Cheers.
0 votes
Steve Matthe…, Agent, North Las Vegas, NV
Fri Jun 10, 2011
Great question!

This is an issue that is gaining momentum and is starting to get legs. But, perhaps this is a question of perceived value more than anything. When I hear other agents compare themselves to used car salesman (and apologize to the used car salesman for the comparison), or hear that we may lose clients that we don't have, it makes me think that maybe we question our value from the start. Some time ago, I listened to a Real Estate agent from little St. George up the road who made somewhere between $500,000 and a million Dollars last year talk about how he built his business on the same model that a doctor uses. To illustrate his point, he put on a Doctor's jacket and a stethoscope and spoke to us about how we need to elevate our attitude about our services in order to elevate our results and therefore our income.

We tend to do things the way we do things, because that is the way we have always done things, and that is the way everyone else is doing things. But, is that sound business? So, lets put on different glasses for a moment and try to consider the way a "Professional" might approach the business. If for instance you were an Attorney, would you take every client who walked through your door (as we often do), and take every client on contingency (as we always do), and not bill them when they walk away (as we never do), and put hundreds of miles on your car and gas usage without charge (as we most often do)? If you were an Attorney and you did, you would be called a "Pro Bono" attorney. Substitute "Attorney" with "Doctor". If you did that, you would be a great asset to the community, but you would likely not be able to pay back your student loans that got you your degree. Substitute Doctor with CPA, or Dentist, or any other career you would refer to as a "Profession". They get paid up front (sometimes after a free first time consultation) for any work that they perform on the behalf of their new client. Think about this... Am I the only one who is surprised by all of the people who pay large sums of money up front to Attorneys and loan modification companies to help with their Real Estate problems without a guarantee of results? There are a lot of Attorneys in Las Vegas who are negotiating loan mods and short sales, and collecting retainer fees before they make their first call to the Bank.

Now, in Las Vegas, with property values down 50 to 70% from the peak, our income per unit has been cut by 50 to 70% as well. And with short sale negotiators routinely giving us commissionectomies for an additional (approximately) 20%, we have to work even harder to make what we used to prior to the collapse of the Real Estate market.

Perhaps it is time we started charging an up front "Retainer fee". I know top producers who do because they understand and communicate their worth to the client, who willingly pays, or walks away. But how many of those who walk away, end up not buying any way. You cannot lose what you did not have. On the other hand, if you are convinced of the worth of your effort, perhaps your client might be also. I have been in the Real Estate business for 32 years, and now many of my clients come to me by way of referral, or word of mouth. I have not been gutsy enough to seek a retainer fee, because i feel that if you don't see the value of my work, and we don't get along, I want to be able to fire you as a client.

But maybe, I need to raise my own opinion of my value and consider a entering into a contract with a retainer fee. If I did so, I bet my client would be more apt to listen to my advise. And maybe if we operated from an abundance mentality, instead of a scarcity mentality, we would approach our profession and clients a bit differently. I for one have a fairly full plate, so maybe it is tie for me to be a bit more choosy who I work with, and charge what my services are worth...from the moment we meet and I decide to take you on as a client.

So, perhaps it is time we put on a Doctor's smock, performed an initial exam on our clients financial, emotional capability, and readiness, and collect a fee from those we decide to take on as clients. And maybe if you are afraid of a potential buyer walking away, you need to market more so you can move from scarcity to abundance in your mind, as well as Bank account.

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin', ya know...
4 votes
Rhonda Brink…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Tue Jun 14, 2011
All I can say is what ever works for you is what you should do , this is working for me and many more Agents are starting this . LIke I said if I lose a couple of people , thats so ok with me, but Im saving myself a lot of anguish which is more than what I will lose in the long run. How ever your business plan is , I wish you luck.
3 votes
Steve Matthe…, Agent, North Las Vegas, NV
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Somewhere this conversation went from charging a fee for services to finding a way to pay our bills including gas for our cars. If we have reached a point where we don't know how we are going to fill our tank, we are in the wrong business and need to find something where we don't worry about the price of gas. This isn't a knock on anyone who isn't doing sufficient business to where gas money is a consideration, in fact, I feel very badly for anyone who is not as successful as they need to be.

But I am saying this is the most remarkable market we have seen in years. There is no end to the supply of Buyers, as affordability is at the highest it has EVER been and interest rates are lower than I have seen in my 32 years in the business. If you were to literally stand out in front of Walmart holding a sign scribbled on cardboard that read "Buy... house... me sell you house", and you had dried spit on your chin, and wore a dirty T-shirt, torn pants, and flip-flops, someone would walk up and write a check.. and they would probably drive their car, so you wouldn't even have to worry about the GAS! And I'll bet that you could do that several times a month... which incidentally would put you in the top 5% of all agents in town. And nearly everyone in town is a potential Short Seller. And while we are bemoaning to cost of gas with our fellow "This market is crap" cool-aid drinkers in the office bull-pen, and playing cards, waiting for the phone to ring, some are making a killing and would compare this market to "Shooting fish in a rain barrel".

We just need to wear different eyeglasses - maybe rose colored for awhile - until we can see the abundant opportunities out there. As for the statement that this somehow has something to do with an oversupply of agents, lets drill down into the stats a bit deeper. At the peek of the feeding frenzy there were 17,400 Realtors in GLVAR. As of the end of May, 2011 there were 11,400 agents, down from a year end 2010 of 12,500.

Last year was the third highest unit sales of all time, but of the 12,500 agents, only 3,753 Realtors sold more than 6 units... TOTAL! And only 1927 sold 12 or more homes. In the last (running) 12 months we have closed 44,632 units, of which 20,042 have closed so far in 2011. This means SOMEONE is doing the business. As they say... "If not you, who? If not Now (in this market), when (and in what market)? " I will bet dollars to donuts that 2011 will top all records for unit sales. Granted, the prices are down, but as you can see, so are our fellow Realtors - literally - in numbers, as well as in down in the mouth - leaving many of us to enjoy this amazing market.

Back to the question of fee for services, we are professionals, and when the market, and perhaps more importantly, when we see that we are professionals, we will be able to charge a retainer fee for services. Did everyone catch Alan's comment about the client who was surprised that there was no charge for doing a CMA? That should tell us something.

David... again, we need to go from a scarcity mentality to an abundance mentality. There is more than enough oil (as it were) for those who are drilling, and who know where, and how to drill.

That is it for my daily rant... Can I get another AMEN?
3 votes
Christopher…, Agent, Henderson, NV
Fri Jun 10, 2011
I am thinking the economy has nothing to do with whether a Realtor's business model include charging an upfront fee. How one runs their business and the client's one attracts will probably have more to do with charging or not.
Seems that wasting your time with clients who are not truly motivated to buy or unable to is the root cause of this consideration. I have found that improving my conversion scripts (for sign callers) and improving my Buyer Consultation time remedied this problem. Still don't charge an upfront fee.
I would love to hear what works for you.
Good luck.
Chris Dowlen
Keller Williams Realty
702-806-1764
Web Reference:  http://www.teamdowlen.com
3 votes
Damon Bottic…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Thu Jun 9, 2011
@Michael,
I don't agree with your analogy. When someone buys a car, they check out several different makes and models, decide what they want and then price shop to get the best deal. The salesman in that scenario is just that...a salesman limited and required to push the product offered by the dealer they work for. They are trying to convince a buyer that their product is the "one to buy" and they are trying to sell it for the highest possible profit.
Macy's & Amazon sell products...again, salespeople working for the seller of the products.

Real estate agents (at least here in Nevada) represent the buyer. They act as consultant, advisor and advocate for the buyer's best interests. Once a property is identified, they negotiate the best possible deal for the buyer and provide advice and guidance to protect the buyer throughout the many steps and stages of the contract period. I would compare this relationship to that of an attorney, CPA, or health care provider.

If a buyer walks into an open house or model home, that would to me better fit the analogy of a car lot or Macy's. If they want to shop a real estate website for homes (like they shop on Amazon) they can do so all day long and no one will ask for a retainer.

My current policy does NOT require a retainer in most cases (I have a few exceptions in which I do require a retainer), but as the market changes and the overhead costs increase, I may reevaluate in the future. As agents continue to provide better service and representation and as foreclosure and short sale challenges in our markets demand a higher degree of knowledge and experience, I think more agents will prove themselves to be trusted advisers. It only makes sense that agents who see themselves as trusted advisers and advocates for their clients may require more of a commitment from the client than the agent who simply sees themselves as a salesman.
3 votes
Steve Matthe…, Agent, North Las Vegas, NV
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Hello Rhonda,

I agree with you, but I don't think I have it wrong. My point was that some who read and/or post here are focused on how bad the market is because they are not doing well, and they end up in one of two camps. In one camp we have those who say, we need to charge a fee so we can pay for gas in our tank. The other camp says, "If you charge a fee, you will scare away buyers". I say, you can't lose what you didn't have. If I may digress for a minute, it is like when we talk about prospecting, some argue that you shouldn't leave a message on the answering machine because "They might not call back". But the reality is, you can be 100% sure that they WON'T call back if you don't leave a message, because they don't have your number, OR a reason to call back. My point from the start has been that we should elevate our own opinion of own value and the service we provide (from our first meeting with a potential client) so that we can see ourselves charging a fee - because we are professionals.

And that we need to lift our heads up and see that this is a great time to be in the business, not bemoan the cost of gas or complain about how much competition there is....Or for that matter, take advise from someone who lost their license, or someone who talks like they have it all together, but who makes less money than you want to make. We talk about the blind leading the blind, but it occurs to me that the blind cannot lead the blind. And the only thing you learn from failures is how to (or how not to) fail. And maybe, we need to steel ourselves and ask for a retainer, as you, and many others do...with apparent success. I just need to up my testosterone dose, lean into the winds of change, be a man, and charge the fee I deserve.

I'm just sayin'
2 votes
Rhonda Brink…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Tue Jun 14, 2011
I think you took it all wrong Steve. It is not about gas , its about being a tour guide and working for nothing for the people around the world hearing about our cheap home prices, many of them have never been off the strip and now they are mixing looking around Vegas in with their vacation with no real intentions of purchasing a home here. Some of us are just saying if we are going to spend a whole day out with them, doing the research and spending our gas we should have a fee up front.

I am one of the fortunate agents that do have closings but I still come in contact with the people who just want to look. As Ive said before if Agents have time to play tour guide and work for nothing that is great, but I dont so I ask for the fee and I have been fortunate to get it. As it has already been said, Lawyers, Doctors etc get retainer fees, why should a Realtor be expected to just trust someone and spend their day with them working and it goes no where? There are things in this field of work that sets the pros and the minors apart. It takes Agents that are not afraid of losing a deal to come up with such good business plans to protect their interest and time and as I said before we should all stand united so we get the respect of a professional and not someone desperate to make a sale.
2 votes
Phyllis McAr…, Agent, San mateo, CA
Tue Jun 14, 2011
AMEN!!!

Steve! I love your answer!! (especially the graphic discritives) This year I have done better than the last 4, why? Because I don't listen to the whinning masses telling me I should be worried.
2 votes
Rena Levy, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Sat Jun 11, 2011
I agree with Damon. Real estate agents who are representing the buyer do act as as consultant, advisor and advocate for the buyer's best interests. The Real Estate market has changed dramatically and the way of doing business has changed as well. Lengthy short sales deals that require a lot of time and work . Writing several offers on several properties for buyers that want to buy only one property . Dealing with REO , undelivered titles, banks selling properties before they take title, and the list goes on and on.

I remember when Real Estate brokers started charging " Transaction fee" a few years ago from buyers and sellers. Most agents did not think that the buyers will agree to pay the fee, and ended up paying the fee out of their commission. Today, most real estate agents charge a transaction fee.

I think that its all about how you you want to run your business and how you present it to your clients.
Good Luck
2 votes
Steve Matthe…, Agent, North Las Vegas, NV
Fri Jun 10, 2011
I want to go to Linda's Doctor who only charges after the consultation. When I go to the Doctor, they make me pay an upfront retainer fee (my insurance calls it a deductible), and agree to pay the balance either upon leaving or through my insurance. There is a schedule of fees that I can obtain from the doctor prior to the visit, but I have to agree to pay regardless or he won't see me. I want a Doctor who makes free house calls 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I want a Doctor who charges a contingency fee where he spends a lot of money and resources to fix my problem, and then he gets paid only if I am healed/cured/fixed. I want an Attorney who will take my calls (for free) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, drive to my location, take me shopping (as it were) in his car, and then when I do file a law suit or engage his services, he only gets paid if I follow through with the thing I hired him to start in the first place. (I do not work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but in a pinch I am always available... but you get my point).

Now, having said all that, I am either too nice a guy, or too chicken to do that, or too confident that if I get them in my car, it is a foregone conclusion that they will buy from me. But once in a while (thank goodness - just once in a great while) I miss it and find I have wasted a huge amount of my resources for someone who just wanted to write off their vacation to Las Vegas as an "Investment hunting trip". After 32 years in the business, I think I read people pretty well, and qualify their intention quite well, but I have, on occasion been snookered by those poker-faced time wasters that results in all outgo on my part and no income. My boss (read that - wife) does not appreciate when I do not "feed the pig" (piggy bank).

In the perfect world (that lives in my mind), Realtors are revered and respected for what they can accomplish on behalf of their clients, get paid up front for services to be rendered, and not compared to used car or insurance salesmen by either the public, or members of our profession.

In my defense and the defense of many of my colleagues, I feel my clients and colleagues would say I am a professional. And for many of my colleagues I would say they are Professionals as well. So, we need to do 2 things: first elevate the level of professionalism among our ranks, and second, elevate our own opinion of the value of the great services we provide.

Can I get an Amen! (and a thumbs up?)
2 votes
Annette Law…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Fri Jun 10, 2011
Helene,
Without a doubt we have all been in situations where we realize we've wasted our time. Isn't that what you are trying to compensate for through a fee, to compensate agents for wasted time?

In my opinion, this 'recovery action' would be a misdirected activity. HOWEVER, creating loyalty plans is a different story. Value based, results driven. Accomplishes your primary objective plus is clearly perceived as a value added component for the consumer.

The economy is not what drives this initiative, but adding tangible value to the services you deliver to your home buyer or seller keeps them on topic AND on schedule.
Annette Lawrence
ReMax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, Fl
727. 420. 4041
Web Reference:  http://www.MyDunedin.com
2 votes
Abbie Taylor, , Las Vegas, NV
Fri Jun 10, 2011
Probably not a good idea. There is too much competition on the market right now. If you do this you will probably just chase your potential buyers away and to your competition. My professional opinion is not to try this option.
Please let me know if there is anything else that I can help you with!
Thanks,
Abbie Taylor
Realty Executives
702-353-0547
2 votes
Phil Rotondo, Agent, Melbourne, FL
Fri Jun 10, 2011
If the system ain't broke, don't fix it.
Oh,
and
By the way,
I don't think that charging an upfront fee to go to a listing appointment will work either.
Web Reference:  http://www.321property.com
2 votes
Michael Emery, , Minneapolis, MN
Thu Jun 9, 2011
Good idea.

Maybe car dealerships could take a deposit at the door from prospective buyers, then if they bought they would get a credit on their new car.

Maybe Macys could require you to buy a Macys Gift Card before helping you.

Maybe Amazon.com could charge you an up front fee to browse their website, then refund on purchase.

Not so good an idea.
2 votes
Jim Bandy Gr…, Agent, Henderson, NV
Thu Jun 9, 2011
Goodluck trying to get a Buyer to do this. Sounds good in theory, but I think you will lose clientel!
2 votes
David Cooper, Agent, Los Angeles, CA
Fri Sep 2, 2011
When you working with investors buying houses in the $70,000 to $90,000, the normal commission will NOT compensate for the expertise of a seasoned real estate professional. There should be minimum standards and if a fee needs to be added, so be it

DAVID COOPER Foreclosure Specialsit with 35 Years Investing Experience. Receive a FREE List Daily of Low Priced, Bargain Homes in Good Areas with Great Cash Flow. GO TO website or Call +1-702-499-7039
1 vote
Stephanie Le…, Agent, Miami Lakes, FL
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Good question... I don't think it is a wise choice in this market..

You can have them sign a buyers agreement and prove yourself as a professional and expert in real estate and should have no problem..

I my-self screen the buyers I work with and if I think they won't work out with me I pass them along as a lead to other agents and collect a referral fee...

You can tell if you are working with a buyer who works well with you or not. If not pass them on to someone who may be able to assist them different from your style and instead of losing your buyer and make zero, you can at least collect a referral fee. Plus I find buyers really like my honesty and don't mind the change.
1 vote
Linda S. Cef…, Agent, Franklin, WI
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Phyllis,

How refreshing that was to read your response. Someone in an earlier thread asked for a BIG AMEN. Well, you got it!
Web Reference:  http://www.lindacefalu.com
1 vote
Rhonda Brink…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Tue Jun 14, 2011
I disagree with you Gerald. I have been getting it for almost 2 years now. I basically educate the buyer on why he or she should pay it . I am a full time 100% agent who is very professional. I dont want to be treated like a part time agent or an agent who is desperate for a sale that she will work for free one day or 3months. I will never offer back part of my paycheck just to get a person to hire me for my services. However I do charge the 150.00 fee up front to work with them for the whole day, do all the research before hand and pay for my gas to show them around the city, and I put it in my buyers brokerage agreement that once we get to close of escrow, I will pay 300.00 towards a closing cost . This keeps them loyal to me and if they are serious buyers they do not seem to have a problem with paying me. If I should lose a few that would of been serious buyers to begin with , that is ok too because look how many I saved myself from working for nothing. A true professional knows when to say "no thank you , I will pass" But I do know desperation , I was there in my beginning years, I have just learned a lot since then and Im always looking for ways to protect my time and interest.
1 vote
David Cooper, Agent, Los Angeles, CA
Tue Jun 14, 2011
If the prices of houses get any lower, the 3% commission won't cover the $4.00 gasoline you need to drive clients around. But the oversupply of agents make it impossible to suggest a fee.

DAVID COOPER Foreclosure and Bank REO's Specialist-Las Vegas.35 years experience For freee list
Call +1-7024997037 or check website
1 vote
Penny O'Brien, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Mon Jun 13, 2011
Hello Helene,
Actually, I've been considering it..

Penny O'Brien
Simply Vegas
Las Vegas, NV
Penny@Pennysproperties.com
702.321.9383
1 vote
Rhonda Brink…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Sat Jun 11, 2011
LOOK At THIS THREAD !!!

We are looking to buy property in Las Vegas.The agent we initially contacted charges a retainer fee. Is this typical?


There are places in NY that this is typically how an agent works. I am a Realtor of 15 years and I am very successful and I would never put someone in my car ever again like I did when I was new in the business without them having a real pre approval. If some of you dont mind volunteering your time thats great but Im busy enough I dont have to do that. People are hearing the news all over the world about how cheap our houses are and they come here not really serious about buying something but just checking it out . I would say without knowing for sure with proof, how serious this buyer is you are just going to be there free tour guide. And for all of you who dont come up with a professional plan to protect your time and interest, I feel bad for you. Because if they are serious they wont mind paying it , I dont have a problem getting it.

Besides if they are really serious , why would they complain about paying this when they will get double the money back at closing ????

And if ALL Realtors would stand together and make it a common thing, we would get the respect of a professional and not someone desperate to try to make sale.

Tue Jun 7 2011, 00:00 - Delete this answer
6Link to this answer Report
1 vote
Joan Congilo…, Agent, Freehold, NJ
Fri Jun 10, 2011
If the buyer agent pool was limited & it was a sellers market it might work. However, these days everyone & their uncle has a real estate license and they are all hungry for business so why would any buyer pay upfront to work exclusively with one agent? They just don't have to, they have too much access to the information and too many agents to choose from
Web Reference:  http://www.joancongilose.com
1 vote
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Thu Jun 9, 2011
I think the "free market" works best on a relatively personal level, and real estate brokerage is a relatively personal level. So if your time is in great demand, then, you certainly can require a retainer or an upfront fee. But if you're hanging around playing Angry Birds all day . . .
1 vote
Suzie Marqua…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Thu Jun 9, 2011
Great Question. I have never thought of charging a upfront fee. I always do a Buyer Broker Agreement with my clients. In over 11 years I have not had a client refuse to sign it. It creates the loyalty and lays out the road map of how we are going to procede. We write down how I do business and what I expect from them. I educate the buyer on what their responsibilities are. I do not want them out there going into open houses and new housing tracks with out me. The buyer Broker Agreement is a must as far as I am concerned. I believe agents that do not use it are missing out. I think most agents do not use it because they are afraid to ask their client to sign it. It is a wonderful tool and I think by using it you really help your client understand more about what we do and how we do it.
Thank You
Suzie Marquardt
Realty One Group
702-234-7653
fahrnyteam@yahoo.com
http://www.Facebook.com/Fahrnyteam
1 vote
Jeffery Sklar, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Sat Sep 17, 2011
I think I am in the minority here but I think charging an upfront fee is a horrible idea. We sell real estate...and we are compensated for it quite nicely. I have to think that if someone were to charge an upfront fee, here in Vegas, they would lose clients. There are 13,000 +/- members of the GLVAR....I think most would be happy to take those clients for free. I never charge an upfront fee, never make anyone sign an Exclusive Buyers Agency agreement...I let my work speak for itself.

I also have to say I think real estate is great right now. More homes were sold last month than any other time, with the exception of 1 month. Approximately 4000 sales last month. The economy might be bad but real estate is moving quick.

Just my humble opinion...

Jeffrey Sklar
Broker
Property Manager
Southern Nevada Property Management
8871 West Flamingo Road Suite 202
Las Vegas, NV 89147
702-522-6764
jeff@snevpm.com
0 votes
Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Fri Sep 2, 2011
All for it HOWEVER most buyers don't have money for escrow, inspection, appraisal and etc. we are another fee upfront... We qualify our clients usually say more NO's than Yes during the day

Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Credit Repair Advisor
The Michael Group - Dallas Business Journal Top Ranked Realtors
972-699-9111
http://www.lynn911.com
0 votes
Akil Walker, Agent, Upper Marlboro, MD
Fri Sep 2, 2011
Good idea, distinguishes the serious buyers from those browsing.
0 votes
FSBOsuccess, Home Seller, 28590
Fri Sep 2, 2011
I am all for anything to level the commissions "playing field" between the seller and the buyer. The fact that the seller ends up footing the entire bill to sell a home and the buyer brings nothing to the table in regards to compensating an agent for their time and work is absolutely ridiculous.
0 votes
NonRealtor, , 23456
Fri Sep 2, 2011
Hi Helene,
Simply tell your clients to wait another year to buy, prices are declining. Then you don't have to waste their time and your time. Good Luck
0 votes
Rhonda Brink…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Fri Sep 2, 2011
Sorry about the typos, this site seriously needs an edit button.
0 votes
Rhonda Brink…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Fri Sep 2, 2011
I respectfully disagree with you Stephanie , I believe in this market its even more important with commissions lower, prices of homes lower, gas higher, and then spending your whole day out with someone who at the end of the day i does not write a contract.

Buyer brokerage agreements do not mean anything, if they decide not to buy, you still did not get a thing from those clients and you just spent so many hours researching for them and then a whole day showing them what you found. We all Make sure our buyers are qualified before taking them out "at least I really hope so" that is real estate 101. Also if you do not work with a lot of relocation clients, you would not know what it means to be treated like a tour guide . Even those people come with a pre qual letter, but we all know those are as good as the piece of paper they were typed on.

Just a FYI about the buyer broker contracts, another reason they do not mean anything. I have heard so many stories over the years about people just not telling their agent about them or they might tell them and the agent works with them anyway, the chances of you finding out are slim. You would have to check tax star every day and then hope they didn't put it someone else's name or their trust etc.

I'm not sure why we all do not come together and value ourselves as highly respected professionals such as car mechanics, attorneys, even wedding planners and the list goes on and on of the many businesses that take retainer fees.
0 votes
Rhonda Brink…, Agent, Las Vegas, NV
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Thank you , Im in it to make money and my business soar , not to let people run all over me because they think they can. I do have a plan and I never wing it . I feel like something is working since after 16 years I am a producer and I get what I expect to succeed.
0 votes
David Cooper, Agent, Los Angeles, CA
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Rhonda. 2 Thumbs UP. Successful businesses figure out their expenses and then work on a business plan that charges enough to create a profit. I wonder if most agents actually know if they are making money after all the expenses are deducted.


DAVID COOPER Foreclosure and Bank REO's Specialist-Las Vegas.35 years experience For freee list
Call +1-7024997037 or check website
0 votes
Linda S. Cef…, Agent, Franklin, WI
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Great thought provoking points and a very humble answer I might add.
Web Reference:  http://www.lindacefalu.com
0 votes
Linda S. Cef…, Agent, Franklin, WI
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Rhonda,

What you describe is an interesting concept and possibly one that we may all enjoy some day. If it works for you, GREAT! I am old enough to remember a time when there was no such thing as a buyer's agent - at least not in the sense of the word as it means today. So..........you just never know.
Web Reference:  http://www.lindacefalu.com
0 votes
Gerard Carney, Agent, Spring Hill, FL
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Up Front fees are like slitting your own throat! Do it and you competition will get your business. Budget yourself and you never feel the economy! As to Driving Clients around, I don't they meet me and this way they keep the number of houses to see down, I drive a hybrid and get 45 MPG I'll ride all over the place they are less likely to!
0 votes
Carmen Brode…, Agent, Scottsdale, AZ
Sun Jun 12, 2011
That is a very difficult hurdle for most buyers.
0 votes
Phyllis McAr…, Agent, San mateo, CA
Sat Jun 11, 2011
I don't think so. There's never been a time that I felt I needed gas money or monetary validation for my time in this industry. If I don't think it's worth showing a home, I won't.

If I'm busy with my family, I say so, I actually tell the potential buyer I don't want drive today because it's storming out. If they like my attitude they'll eventually purchase with me, if they don't, that's ok too.

Today I showed a home and we wrote an offer on the hood of my car. Buyer had to rush to work.
0 votes
allan erps,A…, Agent, Pearl River, NY
Sat Jun 11, 2011
Not on board with the paying aspect as we are basically self contracted. The loyalty factor and comfort level of a Buyer is something that needs to be nurtured. Conversely, I recently had 2 phone calls looking for a CMA. Both asked me how much this would cost. Told them there was no charge and they were amazed!
0 votes
Linda S. Cef…, Agent, Franklin, WI
Fri Jun 10, 2011
Steve,

Glad I don't live in NV. Yes, of course I have to agree to pay for services rendered, but I don't have to pay for them up front. When I do a buyer agency, my client is agreeing to pay for services rendered, but I'm not requiring them to pay up front. If you really want to use my doctor, come to Wisconsin. I know of a really great, dedicated REALTOR® who would only be too happy to assist.

And I agree that most of us provide much more than a car salesman, but I still would not put myself on the same level as a doctor. There are many professions that do the job and get paid afterward, ours just happens to be one of them. And I agree with your last couple statements regarding our own worth. If we provide great service eventually the word will get out and the customers will become our clients without much effort.

Just my thoughts.
0 votes
Linda S. Cef…, Agent, Franklin, WI
Fri Jun 10, 2011
Lots of great opinions here as varied as they are. We can always count on Mack to give his laid back, free spirited thoughts and Phil is almost always straight, short and to the point. Myself? I stand by my first answer. And Suzie brought up a great point. Buyer agency contract is still the way I do it. I used to be a little stricter in that I would not leave the office until it was signed. But I have learned that since the housing crash people are very distrusting of anyone connected with the business of real estate. I am finding that it is taking a little longer to help buyers understand the important of being represented.

What I do find is this: I spend a lot of time getting to know my buyers and allowing them to get to know me and how I work. I still do this before leaving the office. I also provide them with a booklet and other miscellaneous information including a sheet that divides the left and right with a detailed explanation of customer versus client. Once they truly understand it, they WANT to sign the buyer agency.

I also understand where Steve is trying to come from, however, I do not put myself on the same scale as a doctor (lawyer maybe, but only because I am only a few credits short of being one myself). And........when I go to a doctor, I have to agree to pay after the service, not before. If I did, I'd find a new doctor.
Web Reference:  http://www.lindacefalu.com
0 votes
Dp2, , Virginia
Fri Jun 10, 2011
I agree in spirit with Mack and Michael. Jim is correct: I'd walk.
0 votes
Lynn Burke, , Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV
Thu Jun 9, 2011
I understand the question as the gas prices go up it gets more difficult to fund the buying pricess only to have your buyers, not buy. As Realtors the public puts us on the same level as a used car salesman ( no offense to used car salesmen) but the perception is what I am referring to. I think if our customers and clients saw how hard a really good agent works for them they might feel differently. The hours of research, document prep, driving all over town etc. It takes months to make a paycheck at times. Meanwhile you are funding the process. Sounds good in theory, (for the Realtor) but in practice, I don't think it would fly because the public doesn't place much value on our services since they do not understand what we do, the level of education and vast knowledge of researching, and laws and ethics and contracts, that a good Realtor brings to the table.
0 votes
Darrell Cype…, Agent, LAS VEGAS, NV
Thu Jun 9, 2011
Hi Helene,

I agree with Linda. We a Realtor Professionals have to put our selves out there and prove our dedication, loyalty, and net worth to our clients and most of the transactions will happen.

Good Luck

Darrell Cypert SRS, SFR, RDS
Realty One Group
10750 W Charleston Blvd. Ste. 180
Las Vegas Nv,

http://www.DarrellsellsLV.com
0 votes
Linda S. Cef…, Agent, Franklin, WI
Thu Jun 9, 2011
We need to give time to buyers to get to know us and whether or not we are trustworthy. Expecting them to pay for something upfront is not a good option in my opinion.
0 votes
Search Advice
Search
Ask our community a question

Email me when…

Learn more