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Old 03-24-2016, 09:59 AM
zdg zdg started this thread
 
Location: Sonoma County
841 posts, read 1,656,403 times
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We're going to be in LA next weekend to look at a school for our daughter and rental houses in West LA and are having an oddly difficult time figuring out the best way to find a single agent to set up rental visits for us.

We've rented before in Austin, Houston, and NYC -- each time was the same process...we'd find a listing agent online at any major real estate broker and a single person was assigned to us to set up showings and help us find a house to rent. But when I look for rental agents in LA, I seem to find nothing but buy-sell agents (meaning no one appears to be just rentals).

How do most people set up multiple showings at multiple rental houses in LA? Does anyone have an agent that specializes in western LA rental properties?

Or is it just a different game in LA where we have to schedule showings thru each listing agent for that property?

Much appreciated.
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Old 03-24-2016, 10:14 AM
 
Location: South Bay
7,091 posts, read 18,432,519 times
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I've known real estate agents who would do rentals as well, but it wasn't at all common. Everyone I've ever know who has rented has done the searching and visiting on their own time. On a positive note, it keeps rentals costs down as there are no agency/broker fees. At the super high end of the market I'm sure this is a different story, but for us plebs, we have to do the work ourselves.
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Old 03-24-2016, 11:12 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles (Native)
24,204 posts, read 13,710,461 times
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Yeah I'm guessing that in general agents don't want to focus as much on residential rentals and would rather focus on selling properties.
Except maybe at the higher end as BRinSM mentioned.

In NYC it seems to be the default to go to a broker or agent from what i've heard.

In my opinion, nowadays with the internet it seems easier to just find rentals through craigslist or other sites.
I guess i'd rather just go direct.
Either through the listing agent or landlord.
Usually when there is a middle man involved you pay more as BRinSM also mentioned.
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Old 03-24-2016, 12:44 PM
 
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Here's the difference...in other markets, landlords are willing to pay a broker fee to a leasing agent who brings them tenants, so real estate agents do leasing on the side and earn commissions from landlords.

Landlords in LA don't need to do that. Rental demand is so high they can get always good tenants without paying a broker. (NYC is its own insane market where RENTERS pay the broker fee, that's not the case in LA yet).

You might try calling realty offices and see if someone will help you for a fee...say, here are my requirements, I'll pay $X if you find me a place to rent. I'd guess you would need to pay at least $1500-2K to get someone to do it.
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Old 03-24-2016, 12:57 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles (Native)
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Yeah but then if you are going to spend time calling around to find an agent that is willing to help you for $1500-2000 might as well do it yourself right?
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Old 03-24-2016, 01:01 PM
 
106 posts, read 73,718 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jm1982 View Post
Yeah but then if you are going to spend time calling around to find an agent that is willing to help you for $1500-2000 might as well do it yourself right?
Depends...if I had only 2 days in town to find a place and didn't know the area, it might be worth it. Really it depends what your time is worth. This person has enough cash to rent his/her daughter a house in West LA, which is probably $5k+ per month, so I'd guess this person is willing to pay $2k for more convenience.
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Old 03-24-2016, 01:10 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
2,921 posts, read 1,784,479 times
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There just plain isn't much money in rentals for real estate agents. The only reason they might handle a rental is to get their name out there and hopefully you'll use them when you buy a house.

Just look on Zillow.com and pick a house yourself. I just leased my home on my own to a renter who also used no agent.
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Old 03-24-2016, 01:22 PM
 
Location: Santa Monica, CA
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I would agree that it depends on the budget. The higher end of the market probably works like other cities. But the more typical rental situation will be calling the listing agent and setting up a time to see the place. On the plus side, the weekend is a popular time to see places so you should be able to get in pretty easily. On the down side, two days really isn't much time to find a place in LA.
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Old 03-24-2016, 01:57 PM
 
Location: La La Land
1,514 posts, read 1,896,789 times
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Going through the process now. During our previous visits we befriended a real estate agent who explained that agents do not handle rentals like they do in NYC. Rentals are done through websites or by driving around and looking for rental signs.

Best thing to do is focus on your desired neighborhoods, scour the websites before you arrive and also do some driving around.
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Old 03-24-2016, 02:42 PM
 
808 posts, read 659,816 times
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Not sure what online resources you've been using to identify potential rentals, but I would spend a few bucks and sign up for Westside Rentals. They are one of the more comprehensive resources with lots of rental apartments/homes/etc.
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