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Old 03-25-2011, 10:36 PM
 
2 posts, read 19,107 times
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Hello,

I am a California licensed real estate broker. I am wondering if it is possible for me to act as the buyer's agent for my client for properties outside of California. Is this legal, and will the listing agent oblige in splitting the commission? Would it be considered like any other listing agent/buyer agent agreement, or would it be considered just a "referral fee?" And can the listing agent only offer "referral fees" to licensed agents, regardless of which state?

Or to even put it another way, if I was a listing agent in California, and licensed in California as a broker, can I accept buyer's agents from other states bringing buyers to me, and splitting the commission?

I'm not sure how these out of state deals work in real estate sales as my background is mortgages, where I am definitely restricted to lend only in California.

Thank you for the replies!
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Old 03-25-2011, 10:46 PM
 
Location: Lakewood Ranch, FL
3,254 posts, read 3,269,571 times
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My understanding for Florida is that an out-of-state agent can refer a buyer to a Florida agent but that is all. In fact, the referring agent can't even be in the same office with the buyer, I've been told. If the agent isn't licensed in Florida, they can't perform any real estate services for compensation. If they do, it's a violation and Florida is cracking down on unlicensed activity. Also, it seems to me that by placing a listing on the MLS, a broker is offering a cobroke compensation only to other members of the MLS and would have no obligation to any other broker. Not sure of this but I think that's the way it works.
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Old 03-26-2011, 12:57 AM
 
2 posts, read 19,107 times
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Bbronston, thank you for your quick reply.

Yea, it seems like, from what I can gather, you can only get a referral fee, which can be negotiated to however much you can with the listing broker, but the actual work would have to be done by the Florida listing agent as a dual agent, reflected by all paperwork, with only the referral fee contract/paperwork showing the name of the out of state broker. So if you wanted say, half the listing commission, it would have to be in the form of a referral fee.

(btw, these deals would be made before going to mls)
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Old 03-26-2011, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Western NC
5,804 posts, read 5,716,289 times
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Referral fees are normally 15% to maybe 20% of the selling or listing agent's commission, and that is not written in stone. I've had referrals that resulted in more work than the entire commission was worth; also some that went fairly quickly, but not common. I remember one in particular that was in an estate, and there were a myriad of legal entanglements and it took over a year for a closing. I honored the commitment of the referral fee, but vowed never again. Normally they are not worth it; and especially in this economy you have to work 3 times the hours for the same income.
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Old 03-26-2011, 02:43 PM
 
Location: Huntington, NY
7,739 posts, read 10,854,424 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QuilterChick View Post
Referral fees are normally 15% to maybe 20% of the selling or listing agent's commission, and that is not written in stone. I've had referrals that resulted in more work than the entire commission was worth; also some that went fairly quickly, but not common. I remember one in particular that was in an estate, and there were a myriad of legal entanglements and it took over a year for a closing. I honored the commitment of the referral fee, but vowed never again. Normally they are not worth it; and especially in this economy you have to work 3 times the hours for the same income.
In our area, the average referral fee is 25%.

And then there is the Relo fee, which more often than not is 35%
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Old 03-26-2011, 03:20 PM
 
Location: Barrington
20,035 posts, read 14,400,856 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elke Mariotti View Post
In our area, the average referral fee is 25%.

And then there is the Relo fee, which more often than not is 35%
Referral fees range 25-35% in my area.

My broker now charges a 50% referral fee on all relos and the split after the fee is 50-50, regardless of all other arrangements.
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Old 03-28-2011, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Tempe, Arizona
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I think in every state where you are not licensed, you'd have to refer to a local buyers' agent and negotiate a referral fee.

And yes, listing agents can only offer referral fees to licensed agents, regardless of state.
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Old 03-28-2011, 02:49 PM
 
Location: Dana Point
140 posts, read 270,321 times
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Simplex, no you can't get a commission from another state. Take the referral fee and don't go through a relo company. They take a HUGE chunk of money out of the 25% you receive, plus a huge chunk out of the other agent's money. No guarantee that you will get any better agent than you can find yourself.

Other states have wildly differing laws and customary ways of doing things. You can't effectively represent your clients in another state because of this. If you want to "earn" your referral fee, interview some agents in that area by phone to make sure you get one that is knowledgeable and experienced. You can also act as a liaison if your clients don't understand something or get uncomfortable with the referred agent.
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Old 04-06-2011, 05:15 PM
 
Location: Nashville
125 posts, read 160,391 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LisainCali View Post
Simplex, no you can't get a commission from another state. Take the referral fee and don't go through a relo company. They take a HUGE chunk of money out of the 25% you receive, plus a huge chunk out of the other agent's money. No guarantee that you will get any better agent than you can find yourself.

Other states have wildly differing laws and customary ways of doing things. You can't effectively represent your clients in another state because of this. If you want to "earn" your referral fee, interview some agents in that area by phone to make sure you get one that is knowledgeable and experienced. You can also act as a liaison if your clients don't understand something or get uncomfortable with the referred agent.
I completely agree with this as a Realtor in TN..
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Old 04-06-2011, 06:50 PM
Status: "It's 5 o'clock somewhere." (set 23 days ago)
 
Location: Mountain Ranch, CA The heart of Calaveras County
6,175 posts, read 11,595,668 times
Reputation: 4950
Quote:
Originally Posted by LisainCali View Post
Simplex, no you can't get a commission from another state. Take the referral fee and don't go through a relo company. They take a HUGE chunk of money out of the 25% you receive, plus a huge chunk out of the other agent's money. No guarantee that you will get any better agent than you can find yourself.

Other states have wildly differing laws and customary ways of doing things. You can't effectively represent your clients in another state because of this. If you want to "earn" your referral fee, interview some agents in that area by phone to make sure you get one that is knowledgeable and experienced. You can also act as a liaison if your clients don't understand something or get uncomfortable with the referred agent.

Lisa studied well the real estate law in CA.

Ask for the 25% referral fee and as an added idea, make sure you get one from the agent in the state your buyers will be buying in and do not use the CAR form as my attorney says it's not enforceable (even though the other end might still pay the referral fee) in the other state.
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