Having more than one buyer agent increases chance to get a better house faster?

Asked by Ken, Los Angeles, CA Tue Apr 30, 2013

I am a first time serious home buyer and having this question often lately. What about having more than one buyer agent? Isn't that help me find a house faster? Each agent may have more than one buyers and they may not (do not) have enough time for me. Any advice or your opinion? Thanks

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Mark Mintz’s answer
Mark Mintz, Agent, Pasadena, CA
Wed May 8, 2013
Not cool! Generally, you don't pay your buyer's agent when you purchase a home. The seller does. If you are going to work with multiple agents, I suggest that you be upfront with them and let them decide if they still want to work with you.

A buyer's agent may ask you to sign a Buyer/Broker agreement which binds you to that agent. I would recommend being upfront about that too, letting other agents know that you have signed such a document.

In a situation where a buyer is searching for homes in multiple areas, it may actually be prudent to consult with experts in each area and give multiple agents a clearly defined territory.

Bottom line, be candid about what you are doing.

Good luck.

Mark Mintz
1 vote
Ron Thomas, Agent, Fresno, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
How much time do you expect to occupy?
Does a Buyer require 70 or 80 hours a week for searches and questions?
Do you think an Agent should have only one client at a time?
Do you think that Agents have access to different inventories?
How can you possibly divide your time between two Agents?
3 votes
Laura Coffey, Agent, Santa Clarita, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
If I find out that a buyer I am working with is using more than one agent I fire them.
You need to find a good agent with great connections to inventory in your area.
Not all agents are created equal. 10% of the agents are doing 90% of the business.
I am well educated and well connected in my area. My time is valuable. I work very hard for my clients and if one wants to work me against someone else in a race to find them a home I cut them loose.
Like previously mentioned it is very unmotivating when a client isn't loyal, I have no time for that when I can focus on clients that appreciate my expertise and skill.
Web Reference:  http://www.LauraCoffey.com
2 votes
Kawain Payne, Agent, Seal Beach, CA
Thu May 2, 2013
Hello Ken,

If you find yourself a TRUE buyer's agent you will not need to work with anyone else!

Agents all have access to the SAME data base to locate properties for you. If your agent is too busy to tend to your home buying needs, then yes you should get another agent, but if you decide to work with another agent please inform your agent you are doing so. PLEASE do not work with multiple agents at the same time.

As real estate professionals we are trained and skilled enough to care for more than one client at a time, just like doctors can care for more than one patient at a time.

Bottom line, get a buyer's agent you can trust, and allow them to be of service to you. If they fall short and seem not to have time for you move on.

Too bad you are not searching in the greater Long Beach or Orange County area ( I could refer you to an awesome agent) :)

I wish you much success in your home buying quest!

Best Regards,
Kawain Payne, Realtor
Prudential California Realty
1 vote
James Sanchez, Agent, Burbank, CA
Wed May 1, 2013
Yeah.... Good luck. A smart/ good agent knows when their client is cheating and once that happens that client goes to the back of the list as far as devoting time to. Its kind of like beening in a realtionship and finding out the other person is cheating when you are putting your all into it. Now if you weren't putting your all into it, you probably wouldn't care. All I can say is I put my all into it, even if I have multiple clients an agent has to put there all into it. If I find out a client is seeing houses with an other agent, I drop them like a bad habit, no explanation needed why o don't return their calls or text messages.
1 vote
Lance King, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Wed May 1, 2013
No, it won't. Good agents/brokers look out for their clients and work hard for them. No agent/broker worth having will work with you if they know you are using multiple agents.

And the real skill is not finding properties (other than off market listings). It's what happens once a property is identified.

I would advise you to find a reputable, experience, agent/broker who has time to help you and/or has back up in the form of other associates to step in when he/she is unavailable. That's the way we work and it serves our clients best.
1 vote
Cindy Davis, Agent, San Diego, CA
Wed May 1, 2013
Having more than one buyer's agent is a bad idea. Not only will things get very confusing...it's not fair to those you work with.

I do endorse writing more than one offer in this market...but that can be done with one agent who tracks all your offers and knows what's going on in its entirety.
1 vote
Brian Byhower, Agent, Hermosa Beach, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
I can see what you mean. Maybe you should ask your wife if she wouldn't mind if you got another wife to "help out". See how that would work out.
1 vote
ha! Good one Brian!
Flag Wed May 1, 2013
Lee Fruchter, Agent, Glendale, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
Put yourself on the other side of the table. How would like to be treated this way? If another agent is in the picture, I will fire the buyer no matter how serious they are.
1 vote
Jeffrey White, Agent, Beverly HIlls, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
If you are asking an agent to commit their time and effort to helping you with this important and expensive decision in your life, it is only fair that this agent should also have your commitment to them as your real estate professional and sole representative.

As you can see by the responses, if you are calling every realtor in town, none of them will be willing to offer any sort of commitment to actually help you on the level that we are all capable of helping you. For this reason it substantially lowers your chances of getting the a better property.

I do the same thing. If a buyer shows me that they have no commitment to offer, I explain this to them and if they still don't get it then I tell them best of luck.
1 vote
Muriel Levin, Agent, Beverly Hills, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
Hi Ken,

Remember that the agent who writes the contract to purchase is the one getting paid. What will you do about the agent who spend countless hours to help you and did not get paid? Would you be ok with that approach of working for nothing?

If you actually signed an agency agreement, you know that he has his duty and you have yours.

Think of your agent as the extension of yourself, he acts on your behalf, that is the definition of an agent. The agent is working for you, he is doing the job you would be doing yourself if you were as knowledgeable as he is in this field, he represents you in your search.
Now how many of you are you? That is how you figure out how any agent you need.

You wrote that 2 agents might work faster. Think about this: if you were to divide yourself in 2, you would have 2 of you and would work much faster. Do you want to divide yourself? Maybe not.....

You are going to find the right place, if you are serious, qualified and have a good agent, it will happen. Patience and persistence and you will get your dream home. Good luck!

Muriel Levin, Broker, Realtor in the Greater Los Angeles
HAFA Cert. by DRE, Short Sale and foreclosures resources specialist, Cert. Negotiator.
Agent Immobilier a Los Angeles et la region de la Californie.
Agence Immobiliere de confiance pour les francophones a Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Hollywood et Santa Monica.
Muriel Levin @ Gmail.com
Web Reference:  http://muriellevin.com
1 vote
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
If you had a larger antenna, would you get a brighter picture on your TV?

No, because this isn't a bandwidth issue. One agent can find properties as quickly as ten can; you don't need a bigger pipeline. However, it is important that your agent(s) see you as a priority. The way my clients ensure that they are a priority to me, besides taking my word for it, is they sign a brokerage agreement with me.

Just a thought . . .
1 vote
Cheryll Dudl…, Agent, Beverly Hills, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
Wouldn't it be great if congress could be as unanimous as this.
1 vote
Sona Gallatin, Agent, Santa Clarita, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
Find an agent that you feel comfortable working with and stick to that one. If I know a buyer is working with more than one agent, I step aside.
1 vote
Risa Liebster, Agent, Toluca Lake, CA
Wed May 1, 2013
Ken, Members of the National Association of Realtors® must follow a strict Code of Ethics. Any Realtor® who knowingly works with a client who already has representation is breaking that Code of Ethics. Certainly you would want someone on your side who is not only ethical but committed to your success. This commitment is a two-way street and successful, seasoned buyers know this. If you feel that your agent does not have time for you, express it, allow them to attempt to rectify the situation and if they don't, dismiss them and hire a new agent. It's that simple. Best of luck.

Risa Liebster, Realtor®
Ramsey-Shilling Associates
0 votes
I'm glad you mentioned that. I didn't know the NAR said that. do you have the wording or the reference.
Flag Wed May 1, 2013
Dorene Slavi…, Agent, Torrance, CA
Wed May 1, 2013
Dear Ken,

No not really, this is a good way to get no service at all. You need one really good "Buyer Agent" who is experienced and dedicated to your interests. Professional "Buyer Agents" will devote their time and efforts to your search, and will ask you for your commitment to them as well. A good "Buyer Agent" will set up a meeting with you and go over "Buyer Contracts" that outline your business relationship and their duties and responsibilities to you ,and you to them.

As you can see, it would not be possible to do this with more then one Realtor. See my blogs on this site for more information on Buyer Agents.

Most Realtors can handle many listings but they often cannot work with more then one or two buyers due to the time involved. There are quite a few Realtors who do not work with buyers at all so it pays to ask when you begin the interview process.
0 votes
allan erps,A…, Agent, Pearl River, NY
Wed May 1, 2013
If that is your wishes it can be done but some Agents may ask for Exclusive Buyer Agreement before taking you around. My suggestion is to find an Agent you are comfortable with that will service your wishes.
0 votes
William Moore, , Los Angeles, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
The answer to your question is no, it's not a good idea to have more than one agent whether you're in a contract with them or not because there's a possibility you may get sued. Instead, let the agent you're working with now know you're not happy with him/her and if more time isn't spent with you on trying to find a home you'll have to find another agent to work with.
0 votes
Cheryll Dudl…, Agent, Beverly Hills, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
since most agents have access to the same homes, if they're any good, they'll find you what you want. When you have more than one agent, it's very demotavting - we don't get paid unless we do the deal and if another agent is showing you the same house I can show you, it just turns into a stupid contest. Pick someone you like and trust - if they're not doing the job, figure out why and switch.
0 votes
Mona Cohen, Agent, Los angeles, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
You should interview your agent and find one that understand what you Are looking for. Take your time and don't use multiple ppl. Good luck
0 votes
Al Goldberg, Agent, Beverly Hills, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
Depends if you are dealing with a top agent or not.

If you have someone good they will get the job done.

Contact me.

Al Goldberg Broker
0 votes
SERGEY FEDNOV…, Agent, Beverly Hills, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013
My advice is to find a good agent and work with that agent. Having more than one agent increases you chances of being sued as you may owe agent or agents their comission for their time.

Just take your time and select a good agent who has time and willing to help you with your purchase.

Hope this info will help you!

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0 votes
Michael Nava, Agent, Beverly Hills, CA
Tue Apr 30, 2013

That's not a good idea.
Feel free to give me a call at your convenience to discuss further.

Michael Nava
Rodeo Realty
0 votes
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