What is the lowest commission that I can negotiate with my real estate agent in area 60634 to list my home?

Asked by Luke, Chicago, IL Fri Feb 3, 2012

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Kevin and Julie McLaughlin’s answer
Kevin and Ju…, Agent, Wildomar, CA
Sat Feb 11, 2012
Luke - The short answer is 0%, but in reality you will get what you pay for... I'd expect you will pay between 4-6% of the sales price which will be split between the buyer's broker and the listing broker.

Good luck!
3 votes
Ron Thomas, Agent, Fresno, CA
Fri Feb 3, 2012
What is the lowest price that you can buy a new BMW for?
Can you get a loaf of bread for 25 cents any more?
What is the least that you would work for an hour?
5 votes
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Fri Feb 3, 2012
0 would the lowest number, but I doubt any agent would accept it. You may have the cart before the horse. There will always be some agents willing to work for less than someone else, the question is always are they any good. Not all low fee agents are bad and not all high fee agents are good, but by focusing on the fees you will probably exclude some of the best agents who may not advertise or solicit business by advertising a low fee.
My suggestion is, and has been to find the best available agent to represent you first and focus on the fee later. If the best agent will also charge less than someone else, good for you. A good agent is worth more than their commission, but a bad agent will cost you way more than just a commission. Focus on quality and the any price will seem like a bargain.
4 votes
What makes a good agent good and a bad agent bad?
Flag Thu Jan 8, 2015
Dottie Camma…, Agent, Cherry Hill, NJ
Sat Feb 4, 2012
Dear Luke,

By law, all commissions for service provided by a real estate agent are negotiable. So the answer is - how good a negotiator are you?

BUT, beware - if the agent you are talking to is willing to reduce their commission just to "obtain" your listing - - how willing do you think they will be to reduce the sale price on your home so they can "collect" their commission?

SECONDLY, Agent are in this business to make a living - the MLS tells them how much commission is being paid to a Buyer's agent upon the completion of a sale - - Why should they spend their time showing properties with lower commission when they could be showing properties that pay more?

HERE's an original thought - price your property ACCURATELY from day one and give the Buyer's agent "no" reasons not to bring their buyer!!!

Dottie Cammarasana
Prudential Fox & Roach REALTORS
3 votes
You said, "why should they spend their time showing properties with lower commission whey they could be showing properties that pay more?"
Answer, Because you are suppose to represent the buyer and not yourself. Real estate 101. This is why Luke is asking the question.
Flag Mon Feb 27, 2017
Hi Dottie,
I'm a realtor as well and I have to disagree with some of your points here:
1) an agents willingness to reduce their commission has little to do with their willingness or ability to "reduce the sale price on your home". I see this argument often, but it doesn't make any sense. If anything, this Realtor will lack the conviction to advise sellers to make price reductions. After all, it is the sellers action that ultimately reduces the sale price and you know that.
2) It is illegal for agents to not show certain properties based on commissions. Whether or not this happens is not for me or you to say. I certainly would never put what you said in writing.

Flag Wed Feb 27, 2013
Roland Vinya…, Agent, Sprakers, NY
Sat Feb 4, 2012
You have been given good advice. All fees are always open to negotiation; it's a free market. And if it is not worth it to the agent, he or she will not take on your listing. Bear in mind that he will probably have to share what he gets with another agency (selling agency) and it has to be worth THEIR while as well. And of course the broker gets a cut for office expense and so forth. The pie gets cut many ways before its done. And if, at the end of the day, you can't make a living, you won't be in business. Remember, if he doesn't sell your place, they have invested money and time without recompense - and not all properties are sold by the first company that takes them on.

Where I see a problem is where commissions are cut to the just barely acceptable. Then they are really not worth doing the work or investing in ... but they may be if you can find a buyer quickly, so, hope springing eternal, someone takes on the obligation, only to find it will be a harder job than anticipated. So, do you cut your losses and effectively stop work on it or do you remain "professional" and continue to work even though you know you are losing?
3 votes
Anna M Brocco, Agent, Williston Park, NY
Sat Feb 4, 2012
Commissions are negotiable between you and your agent, there are no set standards; choose your agent with care, and not by commission alone.
2 votes
Phil Rotondo, Agent, Melbourne, FL
Sat Feb 4, 2012
I'll bet you'd just rather see a number than hear us rationalize why it should be higher. Right??
Web Reference:  http://www.321property.com
2 votes
Jeri Patrick, Agent, Pooler, GA
Fri Feb 3, 2012
Keep a couple things in mind. The lower you reduce the listing agent's commission the lower the Buyers agent's commission will be...just saying. Agents are not suppose to eliminate properties by commissions, but if you have 100 houses to narrow to 10-15 to show your buyer. I would not want my largest investment to be listed at a discount rate. Also, if an agent cannot negotiate their own real estate commission, the money that feeds their children, pays their house payment....Are you going to trust them to negotiate on your behalf?
2 votes
Dorene Slavi…, Agent, Torrance, CA
Sat Feb 11, 2012
Dear Luke,
The lowest commission rate will be the lowest you can work out with each agent you interview. There is no set rate, although there might be one that is common for the area. If it's only price you are concerned about, there might be some discount brokers that will do the work for very low prices but you might sacrifice service with them.
1 vote
Michael Vrie…, Agent, Chicago, IL
Sat Feb 11, 2012
Luke -- If you already have an agent, it depends upon your negotiation ability and possibly the flexibility your agent has with his service offerings.

If you don't have an agent yet, your best bet is to directly interview and compare the value of services offered by a few realtors who specialize in what you need.

Good luck with the home sale!
1 vote
Carol Roeske, Agent, Oak Forest, IL
Mon Sep 18, 2017
I work for a 100% commission brokerage. Advertising a lower commission rate works well for me. I would rather have more listings at a lower commission than less at a higher rate. I keep busy and I work with many different people which has turned into many referrals. Although, when I work for a lower commission, I take the lesser part of the cut. I know it should not happen, but I do not want to take a chance that a buyer's agent will skip my listing because of the commission. I may give a discount commission but I am very clear, that is where the discount ends. My service, professionalism or marketing strategy is not discount quality. I am trying to benefit both myself and my client. Face it, we all have to make a living and save where we can. Real estate is not hopping 12 months out of the year, we have our slow season and this helps me through.
0 votes
UpNest Top R…, Agent, Burlingame, CA
Tue Mar 10, 2015
Hi Luke,

I noticed this conversation has slowed down over the past year, but as it's very relevant to our service, we wanted to chime in for anyone else that comes across this thread.

Commission is always negotiable, and the Department of Justice even condones it as good competitive behavior among agents.

So 6% commission is almost always the normal "realty fee" but that can really vary depending on the location and price of the home you're wanting to sell. Many agents are willing to be flexible on commission rates, but it's not something they like to advertise. And most clients are not very capable or comfortable negotiating rates.

At UpNest (http://www.upnest.com), we created an online marketplace where home sellers can confidentially submit their homes, and multiple top local agents will compete to obtain your listing. Some agents lower their commission rates to stand out, and every agent that submits a proposal is an experienced agent, so it's not the same as working with a low grade discount brokerage.
0 votes
Gary Geer, Agent, Antioch, IL
Mon Dec 1, 2014
Talk to agents in your area. Track record of the agent / brokerage is more important in most cases than the lowest commission. Commissions are generally negotiable. Good agents seldom lower their commission rates.
0 votes
lisamontini, Both Buyer And Seller, Johnston, RI
Mon Dec 1, 2014
what is the lowest commission that i can negotiate with a real estate agent in 02919 area to list my home?
0 votes
Nikos Tsichl…, Agent, Park Ridge, IL
Mon May 19, 2014
In short, you could offer your agent nothing if they agree.

However, the point is not to negotiate a percentage point or two off the commission. In all hindsight, the difference in commission will be minimal compared to the service you can get from an agent that truly knows and cares about the work they do. You must think big picture when making huge decisions like selling your home, and in the end the commission differential will seem like peanuts.
0 votes
wardsmith840…, Home Seller, Park City, UT
Mon Mar 24, 2014
I never pay more then 4% commission when selling. If an agent brings both sides they get only 2%. Believe me, they line up for business. You won't hear agents admit the truth here. All commission based jobs understand, would you rather have zero of something or a piece of something. Don't roll over.
0 votes
Ward, Ever hear the old saying you get what you pay for? Pay crappy commissions get crappy agents. Good luck
Flag Tue Aug 5, 2014
So, Christine, what you are saying is you would rather take care of yourself then your clients. Your job is to serve the client first, then your needs. If you demand 6% or above you are serving your needs and not helping the client. Your job is to sell the property at the best price and for the least expense to help the client, not to get yourself the highest fee. 100% truth.
Flag Mon Mar 24, 2014
Ward, I beg to differ. If the piece is too small for it to make sense business-wise, then I'll thank the Seller and walk on to find other sales to represent. Also, by decreasing the commission if the broker brings both sides ~ wow, how fast can you say disincentive to work hard to find you a buyer? But there is something out there for everyone and I'm sure this seller will find brokers on all ends of the spectrum.
Flag Mon Mar 24, 2014
Brendan Ross, Agent, Chicago, IL
Tue Dec 31, 2013
If you want a good Realtor, you should pay a fair standard which is 5-6%. Would you want your employer to pay you the least amount they could? How hard would you work, and how would you feel, if they shortchanged you?
0 votes
Larry Cirnig…, Agent, FOUNTAIN VALLEY, CA
Sat Dec 28, 2013
Real Estate Brokers are prohibited from mandating price fixing, therefore the commission rate is negotiable between Broker/Agent and Seller.

You typically get what you pay for skill wise and can expect a range between 4-6%.
0 votes
ldaviswms, Home Owner, Baltimore, MD
Sat Dec 28, 2013
What is the lowest commission that I can negotiate with my real estate agent in area 21220 to list my home?
0 votes
Sunal Patel, Agent, chicago, IL
Tue Jun 4, 2013
Of course you can negotiate the commission you pay, but the best realtor is paid the full commission because they are going to do the right job for you. In my experience with other realtors, some don't work as hard for you if they are not getting paid properly for the job. The right realtor with tell you step by step what they will do for you to get your home sold and that's the one you should idealy go with. Because you want to sell your property not sit on it, which in the end will cost you more money. Sunal Patel, Remax Vision, spat04@yahoo.com, 312-286-1286.
0 votes
Alonzo Abron, , Chicago, IL
Tue Jun 4, 2013
Of course you want to pay the lowest commission possible. That's natural. What else is natural is you will get what you pay for. Your best bet is to interview a hand full of Realtor that works that specific area. Asked them question that makes them prove their worth.
0 votes
Annette Law…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Mon Jun 3, 2013
As Keven so clearly stated, a smart agent will look you straight in the eye and say, "I'll do it FREE!"
Now, the reality of your question is there for you to address.
What is your purpose?
To have a home for sale?
To sell your home?
That is what is so exceptional about real estate. The home buyer and home seller has an extrodinary array of options. EVERYTHING is negotiable. With each option comes a bit more complexity and a higher requirement the home buyer or seller to understand the reality of acheiving their real goal.
The illusion of saving money is tempting...and will prove to be excessively expensive.
If you choose the "home for sale' option and are ready to sign up an agent who will do it FREE, say so, provide your telephone and see what happens.
If you choose the 'sold' option, you will need to rely on the seven questions you didn't know you have.
You have many options and I wish...

Best of success to you,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Assocaite
Remax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, FL
0 votes
Might want to spell check your signature line
Flag Thu Jun 6, 2013
Dottie Camma…, Agent, Cherry Hill, NJ
Mon Jun 3, 2013
It depends on YOU!

First, consider the agents that will be bringing prospective buyers to your home...Ask yourself - why should they bring buyers to your property? They work for commission and just as you do, they want the highest possible return on their efforts..
Second, let’s consider what your commission pays for - marketing, advertising, servicing and reputation. That costs money!
Third, if an agent will negotiate away their "own" income with you - how quick do you think they will be to negotiate away your sale price?

The highest return on your investment is captured by spending little time on the market as possible; thereby reducing the amount of money you spend on mortgage, utilities, etc. while waiting for that "offer".
My advice - don't focus on the commission dollar - focus on what you get for your dollar and choose an experience, pro-active agent who will price your property right from day 1 and provide the type of marketing, advertising and service that informs you and exposes your property EVERY day to the buying market!
Make sure you are giving the Buyer's Agents a reason to visit your home over your competitions - that is how you SELL your property in the shortest time possible and obtain the highest return for your investment.
0 votes
John Meyers, Agent, Park Ridge, IL
Wed Jun 13, 2012
Hello Luke. Don't be penny smart and pound foolish.

I've seen homeowners who negotiate a low commission rate and then get substandard service and have a home that sits unsold for months.

With my neighbor, his 2nd home sat unsold for years. He bragged about how he didn't have to pay a lot of commission, but lost thousands by having to pay property taxes that the home's rental income couldn't cover.

With normal commission rates, an agent will work harder with open houses, marketing, etc. An agent would rather spend precious weekend hours working on a home that pays more commission at closing. It's human nature and agents have bills to pay too.
0 votes
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