Is it a good idea to represent friends and family?

Asked by Trulia Dallas, Dallas, TX Wed Nov 7, 2012

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T.E. & Naima Sumner’s answer
T.E. & Naima…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Thu Nov 8, 2012
I have to agree with the assessment that there are pros and cons.
It can cause a rift between you if they "trusted" you and you did something that did not meet their expectations, even if it was the best thing for them or totally customary.

Many people don't get how real estate agents get paid and figure you should not collect any commission at all, and are upset if you "charge" them for the office/broker fees.

Many people also don't understand the additional costs involved in purchasing or selling, and will blame you being "gouged" with completely customary charges.

They'll also hold you responsible for lender issues, such as delays or the hassle of supplying documentation for the loan.

You'll have to take your kudos from the mirror and sleep well even though your long-time friend may feel betrayed by you. Most times, however, all is good - especially if you disclose as much to them as you do to normal clients.
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0 votes
Carla Pennin…, Agent, Georgetown, TX
Wed Nov 7, 2012
It's a gamble either way. If all goes well with your representation, you're the hero. If it doesn't, you're the bad guy. But if it doesn't go well with another Realtor, then you're in trouble because you should have taken care of family. Kind of a no-win situation in my opinion! You know your relationships better than I do. My guess would be that if they can stand the frank conversation about whatever guidelines you establish, and they still want you to represent them, then go for it. As with other clients, good communication all along the way is your best tool!
1 vote
Abu Musa, Agent, New York, NY
Thu Nov 8, 2012
I think this is good as long as family, friends and you are happy.
0 votes
Dixon Wong, Agent, Dallas, TX
Thu Nov 8, 2012
I have done it many times and there are ups and downs. So it can go either ways. Just need to make sure when things happened, I will do my best to communicate that is not under my control.

0 votes
Kim Nwachukwu, Agent, Irving, TX
Wed Nov 7, 2012
I have done so with no problems, but the reality is that there are a TON of things that can happen, and then guess who will get the blame? Bingo. Like some of the others have said - it goes both ways.
0 votes
Akil Walker, Agent, Upper Marlboro, MD
Wed Nov 7, 2012
It depends, if they can seperate personal relations & business.
0 votes
Pacita Dimac…, Agent, Oakland, CA
Wed Nov 7, 2012
Works both ways.

I like knowing that my friends and family believe I will always have their best interests at heart and that I will do my best (which is what I do for clients, regardless of who they are anyway).

But if something should go awry, feelings may be hurt when they place their blame on me even if I don't or didn't cause the problem. One example was when there was a sewer back up in the house, before my cousin's son and his family even moved in. His wife thought they bought a lemon and that someone should have known. Even though this is an unexpected problem, and I even contributed some money towards the repairs, she continued to harbor ill feelings towards me as if it was my fault.
0 votes
Michael Brow…, Agent, Allen, TX
Wed Nov 7, 2012
To some, there are pros and cons of representing family and friends during a real estate transaction and in my opinion, there are NO cons, yes, I said, NO cons if the family member does their due diligence in selection the family or friend agent based on their merit instead of because they know the agent or are related to them.

Problems can also arise when the agent is not selected by their friend or family member. I have had people from time to time tell me that they planned on using an agent whom they met at church. Once again, the key is the select the agent based on merit versus relationship.
0 votes
Brent Rice, Agent, Plano, TX
Wed Nov 7, 2012
I think so but my brother doesn't.

Brent Rice, Top Recommended Broker
The Rice Group, Inc.
0 votes
Kenneth "Ken…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Wed Nov 7, 2012
That is up to you and your family and friends.

Turtle Creek Realty
0 votes
this question is posted by Trulia who seems to be trying to drum up activity - this isn't a real question posted by a consumer
Flag Wed Nov 7, 2012
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