Exclusivity Fee

Asked by Mrjosereyes, Silver Spring, MD Tue Jan 31, 2012

Should I pay a $500 fee at closing to llewellyn? I bought a shortsale through the seller's agent. They say I never signed an exclusivity contact and that the fee is normal.

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13
Akil Walker, Agent, Upper Marlboro, MD
Sat Aug 4, 2012
Mrjosereyes,

This should have been discussed with you and provided in writting prior to closing. Fees vary from each brokerage.

I hope it was resolved favorably.
0 votes
Miekeba Jones, Agent, Silver Spring, MD
Sun Mar 4, 2012
Most brokers charge a fee. My brokers fee is $295. Of course this fee should have been presented to you in writing before hand and you would have signed the agreement.
0 votes
Andrea Bedard, Agent, Silver Spring, MD
Fri Feb 10, 2012
Mr. Reyes, I hope you were able to resolve your situation. In my opinion "normal" does not make it right. Most Real Estate Companies do ask their clients to pay a "transaction processing fee" - the amount varies between $200 and $500 - but some do not! If you were required to pay it then there should have been a disclosure at the beginning of your relationship with the agent/transaction. If that wasn't the case you hopefully disputed it via the office manager or broker of record.
0 votes
Steve Withrow, Agent, Bethesda, MD
Tue Jan 31, 2012
It is true that most companies anymore do charge some sort of an "admin fee" or a "flat fee" to the buyer at closing. Ours is $345 and its payable by whatever client our firm represents. The kicker is, if you are an unrepresented seller and you buy one of our listings...their policy is also to show you the fee. Believe me, we as agents HATE this fee as much as you do, we hate asking people to pay it, and we don't receive any benefit from it. Unfortunately though its a reality in our marketplace.

It likely would not show up on your GFE because the lender won't have any knowledge about what the fee is, etc since it isn't their fee.

That being said, the fee has to be agreed upon at some point prior to the closing table. We have a form that we present to buyers who buy our listings without the representation of an agent that includes a disclosure of the flat fee. If you never signed anything like that...you should not be liable for the fee...bottom line.
0 votes
Greg Myers, Agent, Gaitherburg, MD
Tue Jan 31, 2012
Mr. josereyes,

If you did not sign a disclosure form on the Admin Fee...the RE broker should not have charged you for it....PERIOD. As I thought since the Admin fee could not be paid by the bank since your home purchase was a short sale they found a way to have you pay for it.

Now there is a reason buyers have their own buyers agents.
0 votes
Piero Marinu…, Agent, Silver Spring, MD
Tue Jan 31, 2012
Explain your situation to the settlement attorney. I'm pretty sure they will remove the fee if there is documentation to support it. If not, refuse to sign anything until it is gone.

If that agent didn't have the integrity to tell you about the fee up front, then he/she does NOT deserve it.
0 votes
Mrjosereyes, Home Buyer, Silver Spring, MD
Tue Jan 31, 2012
The official term on my HUD-1 is "commission paid at settlement." In addition to $15,600 they received, they are sticking me with $495. I have read several articles on the internet which disparage this practice. Additionally, several states have found the practice of charging an "admin fee" illegal, hence the term "commission paid at settlement." The realtor asked me if I thought he didn't do a good job and didn't deserve the fee. I couldn't believe it! I never signed any paperwork acknowledging I would pay the fee. Most of all, I am upset that they tried to sneak it in at settlement. It was not on the last GFE I received from my loan officer before settlement!
0 votes
Maria S., Home Buyer, Washington, DC
Tue Jan 31, 2012
Was wondering about this sort of thing myself:

http://blog.franklyrealty.com/2007/02/395.html
0 votes
Dream Team1, Agent, 20745, MD
Tue Jan 31, 2012
I'm not clear on what type of fee you are referring to, you didn't state admin. fee but everyone is assuming so could this be a buyer's broker fee? did you have a buyer broker agreement? just what fee?
Web Reference:  http://pghousesforsale.com
0 votes
Greg Myers, Agent, Gaitherburg, MD
Tue Jan 31, 2012
Most banks will not allow a Real Estate Brokers "Admin Fee" on the HUD-1 or settlement form on short sales. If you did sign a "Admin Fee" disclosure form and feel its un-fair call the real estate broker. Also has your lender "Approved" the $500.00 admin fee on your buyers side of the settlement sheet as part of your closing costs?

Greg Myers
Re/Max Realty Group
0 votes
Jeff Escher, Agent, Rockville, MD
Tue Jan 31, 2012
While most brokerages do charge an "admin fee", it must be diclosed to the buyer - either in the BuyerAgencyAgreement or as a separate addendum. If it was never in any paperwork that you signed, I think you have a good arguement for not paying it. My company's policy is that if the buyer doesn't pay it, it is taken out of the agents commission.

Also, if there is no buyer's agent, and you are working with the listing agent, I would think that the seller would be paying the brokers admin fee. You are technically unrepresented, so not sure why you would need to pay them a fee to represent yourself!
0 votes
Piero Marinu…, Agent, Silver Spring, MD
Tue Jan 31, 2012
No! Unless you agreed to that upfront, refuse to pay it. They are already getting a commission for your side of the deal.
0 votes
Laura Feghali, Agent, Stamford, CT
Tue Jan 31, 2012
Hello Mr Reyes,
There are some real estate firms that charge an extra fee or commission for using that firm's services. If you were not told about this extra fee upfront then I certainly would dispute it.

I suggest that you speak with the Broker or Office Manager of the listing firm to resolve the issue.

Good luck!

Laura Feghali
Prudential Connecticut Realty
0 votes
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