You would be surprised how often I hear this comment. I represent a lot of out of state and foreign buyers. Many of them have visited open houses and met several agents prior to meeting me or theyâ€™ve purchased in the city before. Although the agent may not be required to disclose their agency relationship (see the paragraph below for info on disclosure), the buyers who ask this question obviously want representation. Sellers hire a listing agent who is contracted to represent that seller. I firmly believe that all buyers should in turn hire an agent to represent and protect them. Buyer brokerage is a hot topic in the city right now. Historically, buyer brokerage wasnâ€™t practiced in NYC. Even today, many agents feel they are to represent all sellers. I would encourage you to read my blog post here on Trulia about buyer brokerage, disclosure, etc. You may find it useful.
Other states require agency relationship disclosure and many have very strict governing bodies that monitor the actions of the agents in the state. The laws are very different in NYC than most anywhere else in the country. Specifically, the state of NY has an exception to disclosure requirements that I think is ridiculous. The law does not require disclosure if the buyer is purchasing anything that has more than 4 units. So, if youâ€™re buying in a building that has 300 apartments, the agent is not required to tell you for whom he or she is working. I donâ€™t think it should matter what youâ€™re buying. I think the agent should disclose; therefore, full agency disclosure is part of my business protocol. Disclosure and agency relationships are also two topics that Iâ€™m very passionate about and I have taught agency for many years. I honestly believe that this exception to disclosure will disappear very soon. The result of eliminating the distinction between a 1-4 unit property and that 300 unit apartment building would be a more informed public.
In regard to finding a buyerâ€™s agent, interview some agents. You may find an agent at an open house whom you like. You may not like the apartment; but do like the agent. Talk to him or her. Find out if they work with and represent buyers. Talk to them about their negotiating skills, their sales record, etc. Along with many of my colleagues here on Trulia, I would welcome the opportunity to work with you.
Further, if you would like more information on the forms of agency (Seller's agent, Buyer's agent, Dual agent, Dual agent with designated sales agents), please don't hesitate to contact me. Dual Agency is the most misunderstood form of agency. It can happen by walking into an open house... Sometimes the agent doesn't know it. Sometimes the buyer doesn't know it. That's when it's important to know about express agency and implied agency.
Best of luck to you.
John R. Wuertz
Vice President, Associate Broker
The Corcoran Group
Among other ways, dual agency can happen unknowingly when an unrepresented buyer walks into an open house. It really all comes down to what the belief and/or expectation of the buyer is in regard to the relationship. That's why I feel it's better to disclose. An implied agency is created by the words or actions of either party. If agency is not addressed, the buyer may believe that the agent is representing his best interests as well and the agent may not believe that to be the case. This can get tricky.
Again, Good Luck.
I'm sorry Robert, but I don't know how you ever found over 200 apartments in a period of 12 months that you thought you would purchase. When I work with serious, motivated buyers who have defined buying needs, I have difficult time finding them dozen apartments. Not because Iâ€™m lazy to put in time finding them, but because there arenâ€™t enough quality listings in any specific search to show.
Maybe I'm wrong when I make the following assumption. To me it doesn't seem like you qualified your needs by price, neighborhood, building type, needs vs. wants, etcâ€¦
Today, brokers work harder than they ever used. When I take up new clients, sellers or buyers I make sure that when I put in my time and effort to help them that we are both on the same page and working towards a mutual goal. Time is money and this is a serious business.
Everyone who replied to your question is probably wondering, out of over 200 apartments you previewed have you submitted any offers?
Good luck with your search. Remember that there is no such thing as a PERFECT apartment, even $10,000,000 go through renovations and upgrades. One of these dayâ€™s youâ€™ll have to pull the trigger
"...Seen over 200 apts... over the last year." That's a red flag to most agents/brokers. Everyone wants to find the "perfect" place. I'm just being honest with you when I say the amount of places you've seen will put off a lot of people. Mostly because it seems like you'd rather have a tour guide than a broker.
Bottom line, when someone views that much property and doesn't buy, they seem insincere as a buyer. In Manhattan there are plenty of buyers. Most don't take a year to make a decision.
Some of you sound ok but your still saying things the others dont. Whos right? three of you sound like you might know your stuff.
I am getting ready to buy a condo. I was told by an agent at an open house that she could take me to other apartmnets but when i asked she said she works for the sellers. I had trouble finding an agent who would work for me. i also ahve bought houses in two other states and i had someone working for me. one was good. one was not great but ok. I thnk that one was new at it. Dianne one house was in CA and that was the good agent.
i finally found a broker here to work for me. i signed a contract with him saying he would represent me when we started looking at places. I just signed a contract last week for my new home. im very excited and had a great broker. but it was like finding a needle in a hay stack. keep looking Robert and you will find someone to work with. just be careful
This is a very good question and you have some very good answers below. Just to make it concise and simple, when you go to an open house, that agent represents the seller. But if that property is not what you are looking for, and that agent offers to work with you to find a property that is suitable, then they would be working with you as a buyer's agent. You have already ruled out the open house property, therefore if they take you on as a buyer (offer to work with you) they are your buyer's agent. In NYC, we do not have formalizaed buyer brokerage in the sense that we do not have buyers sign a buyer brokerage agreement the way many other states and even other parts of NY State do.
I would strongly suggest you work with an experienced agent rather than go the open house route on your own. Just as sellers have an agent, it is much to your advantage to have a professional in your corner. I would suggest you click the "Find a Pro" tab above and search for someone who seems knowledgeable and then call and see if you "click."
Halstead Property, LLC
An agent at an open house does have an agency relationship with the seller. However, a buyer can ask the listing agent to represent him also as a buyer's broker...at that property and/or others. Provided that both the buyer and seller agree in writing to dual agency, the same agent CAN represent both sides in a transaction. Be sure that you are comfortable with the risks that accompany dual agency and that the agent knows the dividing line of what is and isn't appropriate.
In any situation, you should have a conversation with the agent you ask to take you to see properties. Without agreeing on buyer's agency, they may treat you as a customer (instead of a client) and only be assisting you but not working for you. It's always best to be certain.
John R. Wuertz
Vice President, Associate Broker
The Corcoran Group
Although I am in Long Island, I will be happy to make a referral for you to a buyer's broker.
That having been said, I see you are also selling. I assume you are already listed with someone, as putting your current property on the market first would be the most intelligent way to go. That Realtor should be representing YOU in your purchase. It also makes the deal go easier to have your sale and purchase coordinated by the same person.
Let me know if you would like a referral...Gail@GailGladstone.com
I think you did a good think starting to "feel out the market' by going to open houses and seeing what was out there and getting a good sense of what really mattered to you...neighborhood, size, views, amenities, closeness to a subway/park/grocery store..... BEFORE starting to work with a buyers broker.
The more informed you are as a buyer, the easier it is for your broker to help you.
Many times, it takes time for a buyer to understand the Manhattan market as it is quite different from the rest of the US. Doing your own research is always a good thing!
As for who is representing you, I think it is pretty clear from the answers below. In NYS we have something called an Agency Disclosure Form that will help to clarify who is working for who.
A buyer's agent negotiates the purchase of a home at a price and terms acceptable to the buyer. A buyer's agent also has fiduciary duties to the buyer, among others undivided loyalty, confidentiality and full disclosure.
To find the latest updated New York State Disclosure Form you can go to http://www.dos.state.ny.us
Of cause your broker should be able to provide this to you.
The Department of State has released the new Agency Disclosure Forms, which all brokers will be required to use in connection with all residential real estate transactions (including co-ops and condominiums) beginning on January 1, 2011.
Congratulations on finding your new place.
BOND NEW YORK
I prefer to be a Buyer's agent. it involves far mor interaction with the client, searching for the "perfect" propetry is very rewarding, and when you find the right house, in the selected location, for the price your client can afford, win win situation. Much more work is involved, but in the end when the client takes possesion of their home, you know your job was well done.
Prudential California Realty
La Jolla, California 92037
Most agents in NYC are seller's agents whose legal fiduciary responsibility is to the seller. We are buyer's brokers who represent buyers. We have no conflicts of interest and are not given incentive in any way to drive buyers to specific properties.
I am an expert deal finder and a trained negotiator. If you are seeking assistance (at no charge to you), please give me a call at 212-545-0729 or email me at email@example.com.
There are many Realtors who are representing the buyer and that is exactly who you should be working with.
If you need a referral to someone in your area who will look out for your interests, let me...glad to do it. firstname.lastname@example.org
Gettin a listing is a win win situation,The agent spends money advertising and most of the time, waits for buyer's agent to bring a potential buyer, no matter who brings the buyer, he collects his commission. Wth buyers, you could spend many month , and hours of searching until you find, or not, the right property, and in the end they may opt not to purchase, or go with another agent. There is less certainty there.
I have to say that some of the advice on here is really good. Some of it was real crap. But i'm happy because I hired a great broker and i'm buying a pretty nice place in Tribeca. A three bedroom place with a lot of windows, all new appliances, and great floorplan. The building has a gym and pool!
Since prices are lower now and look like they stopped dropping alot and I know more about what I can get, I'm ready to buy. Last week, I chose a broker and I told tell him exactly what I like and don't like. He said I'm one of his most informed buyers. I guess I did the right thing and learned about the market first. How many people did you let make a purchase at the high point in the market or did you tell them to wait because you knew what the market would do?
I'll post when I buy an apartment because I got alot of direct messages from other buyers on here.
Lastly, I also agree with you Alen, regarding the amount of available property based on specific criteria such as location, price, size, amenities, pets, etc. No matter what inventory is out there, the number of true options dwindle quickly when specific criteria is applied.
Every agent in NY State is under the same license law, but in different areas the business is practiced differently.
You should be able to find a buyer broker to work with you.
The Multiple Listing Service is not as strong in Manhattan as it is in most of the country, so a lot of the agents may be just showing you in-house or their own listings, If it is their own listing, they already ahve an agreement with the seller. If it is an in-house listing all the agents are under one broker, so it would also be an agreement or it would become a dual agency situation.
Good luck in your search.
Licensed Real Estate Broker
Let me break this down to you in more Technical terms as in Clarification of Agency Agreement, which some agents may o rmay not be familiar with (but will be very soon). Also please keep in mind that I am talking about REBNY- Real Estate Board of New York, I have no idea what practices NAR keeps.
(1) You are a Sellerâ€™s (Landlordâ€™s) Agent when:
â€¢ You show a buyer a PDE listing whether you are the listing agent, the selling agent or both.
(2) You are a Buyerâ€™s (Tenantâ€™s) Agent when:
â€¢ You show a buyer another firmâ€™s listing.
(3) You need to be a Dual Agent when:
â€¢ You show a buyer a PDE listing and the buyer requests that you represent them as well.
â€¢ You show a buyer a PDE listing, then show the buyer another firmâ€™s listing and then show the buyer a PDE listing and the buyer requests to be represented by you.
(4) You need to be a Dual Agent with Designated Agents when:
â€¢ You show a buyer a PDE listing and the buyer requests to be represented by another (designated) sales agent from PDE.
(1) You must verbally disclose your agency relationship when:
â€¢ You are acting as an agent for the seller, buyer, landlord or tenant.
(2) You must disclose your agency relationship in writing using the New York Disclosure Form and obtain consent from the buyer and seller when:
â€¢ You are a dual agent.
â€¢ You are dual agents with designated agents.
â€¢ You are the agent of a buyer, seller, landlord or tenant in a building containing four (4) or less units.
(3) If a buyer or seller refuses to sign the New York Disclosure Form:
â€¢ You must prepare an affidavit stating that the New York Disclosure Form was presented and the buyer or seller acknowledge in writing that they refused to sign the document.
(4) If the sellerâ€™s agent is conducting an open house in a building containing four (4) or less units:
â€¢ The New York Disclosure Form is not required to be signed by a potential buyer until substantive dialog ensues between the sellerâ€™s agent and the buyer.
PDE is the firm I'm associated with, thats why you I'm sure that as an example.
I hope this helps you and everyone else understand these policies.
If you want to have a buyer broker represent you exclusively there is usually no charge or cost to the buyer in NY (though there may be some who work differently?) as the the buyer's broker/agent is paid from the buyer's side of the commission that was agreed to by the seller at the time of listing. What Joseph may be referring to is an agreement signed between the buyer and the broker/agent where there is a commitment to working exclusively with this agent/broker for an agreed upon length of time and if the buyer were then to buy a property that was shown to them and not use that broker/agent that they would still owe them that same commission.That type of agreement is always used when there is a rebate involved..
For more details Please take a look at the blog I just posted here: Everything you want to know (and more) about using a buyer's broker. Jolie's 27 answers to questions about Buyer Brokerage! http://www.trulia.com/blog/jolie_muss/2010/02/everything_you
Licensed Real Estate Broker & Brokerage
Office: 212 721-3301
Agency agreements can be signed multiple times and for various properties. Bottom line here. If a customer truly wants a buyers broker with no other agency, they should be prepared to discuss paying the agent/broker so there is no misunderstandind as to whom the broker represents. In Manhattan agency is usually pretty clear and straightforward. Make sure you understand before you sign on the line which is dotted.
For coops and condos, agents need only disclose their agency orally. For other properties the disclosure must be in writing.
Below is a handy link to the form published by New York State Division of Licensing Services.
If you want a buyer's agent, have the agent provide and sign this form. The form describes several different types of real estate agents and many agents play different roles with different clients.
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson
Charles Rutenberg Realty, LLC
127 East 56th Street, 4th Floor
New York, NY 10022
(212) 688-1000 ext. 383
(917) 365-0876 cell and text messages
(212) 688-1919 fax
It sounds like they may be only showing you their own listings. For full buyer representation your can work with an exclusive buyer's broker or agent. I am a NYS licensed independent broker and work exclusively Manhattan buyers and there is no extra cost to you and can actually help you realize a savings if we work together exclusively. Are you also selling a Manhattan home?
Licensed Real Estate Broker & Brokerage
331 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10023
Office: 212 721-3301
While I cannot speak for the brokers who won't show you other properties, I know many good brokers who will.
I am a buyer's broker and would be happy to work with you, showing you my properties and any others you may wish to see.
Feel free to contact me if I can be of any assistance.
Licensed Real Estate Agent
Halstead Property, LLC
770 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10065
You may also find a buyer's broker to negotiate on your behalf, and represent you in the transaction.
It is also recommended cause the buyer's broker knows the market, and other technicalities that the seller's broker will bring to the table.
I have transacted deals where I was the buyer's broker, and since in 99% of cases my services do not cost a thing to my clients, they find it extremely useful and helpful to use a buyer's broker.
For more info, please contact me directly and I will be happy to assist you in your search.
Joseph Minian. President / Broker
Luxury Dwelling, Inc
Licensed Real Estate Brokerage firm
Charles Rutebernberg Realty
We wear two hats here. When you represent the seller you represent the seller. If an agent takes you to see other properties for which they are not the selling agent they will be representing you. Some agents here do not like to work with buyers. I prefer to work for both buyers and sellers and would be happy to help you out as your representative if you are a serious buyer. Reading that you've been going to open houses for almost a year sounds like you are not. Would be happy to discuss.
The Corcoran Group
I would be happy to help!
I specialize in buyer education and NYC is different from ANYWHERE else in the NATION!