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Old 11-13-2017, 09:10 PM
 
106 posts, read 84,941 times
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I'm doing some research into the ins and outs of buying in Washington. It appears that the RE agent for the buyer has fiduciary duty to the seller unless a specific contract is signed designating the agent as a buyer's agent. These contracts seem to bind the buyer to that agent in any and all real estate searches. I understand the agents' wanting to make a commission, but the arrangement seems onerous.

Anyone have experience with sorting out this relationship?
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:50 AM
 
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We've bought houses in several different states and always ask for and sign a buyer's agent agreement with our realtor. I want the agent's fiduciary duty to run straight to me and not the seller so that he/she is truly representing my interests in negotiations and for any issues that arise. We have not found anything onerous about it.
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Old 11-14-2017, 09:26 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,395 posts, read 39,713,740 times
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very simple solution... Do your own thing...(professionally!)
of 30+ WA property transactions I have used a realtor 2x (those transactions were miserable, slow, late, lots of trouble). Buyer unhappy, seller unhappy, bank unhappy... only the realtor was gleaming, until I walked away from closing...(I never allow a realtor to be present at closing, since they cannot offer any legal advice or guidance and they are often drooling over the documents.)

There are excellent title companies (who do all the work anyway).
Real Estate Lawyers cost about 1/10 as much as realtors and they waste FAR less of your time.
All the info you need to dig up your own deals is fresh at your fingertips through GIS sites.

Good luck

Mentioning something like 'fiduciary duty' will send most realtors running for cover.
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Old 11-14-2017, 10:36 AM
 
106 posts, read 84,941 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Farmer15 View Post
.............We have not found anything onerous about it.

Here is what I'd find onerous:

Quote:
Buyer will work exclusively with Broker during the Period of this Agreement and not with any other broker, salesperson or owner with respect to viewing properties.
I can see limiting this to a single offer, but I don't want to get married to the agent for my entire search.

Quote:
The fee Buyer shall pay Broker at the time of closing the transaction is a fee equal to ________% of the purchase price or $__________________.
This puts the buyer on the hook for the fee, who in turn has to try to get the seller to reimburse them.



A typical buyers agreement: http://www.realtyplus-gadsden.com/fi...Rev._04_05.pdf
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Old 11-14-2017, 10:38 AM
 
106 posts, read 84,941 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
very simple solution... Do your own thing...(professionally!)
of 30+ WA property transactions I have used a realtor 2x (those transactions were miserable, slow, late, lots of trouble). Buyer unhappy, seller unhappy, bank unhappy... only the realtor was gleaming, until I walked away from closing...(I never allow a realtor to be present at closing, since they cannot offer any legal advice or guidance and they are often drooling over the documents.)

There are excellent title companies (who do all the work anyway).
Real Estate Lawyers cost about 1/10 as much as realtors and they waste FAR less of your time.
All the info you need to dig up your own deals is fresh at your fingertips through GIS sites.

Good luck

Mentioning something like 'fiduciary duty' will send most realtors running for cover.
I agree. I guess the question is whether I can find a suitable property outside the "system". My experience with real estate agents has not been good in the past.
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Old 11-14-2017, 11:11 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,395 posts, read 39,713,740 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Redbelly View Post
I agree. I guess the question is whether I can find a suitable property outside the "system". My experience with real estate agents has not been good in the past.
I only buy view / special interest / ez to resell props... and I do commercial (industrial to apartments), Land investment, and SFH by digging them up myself.

but the arrangement seems onerous. This is the case, and not unique to WA.

WA is a full disclosure state which has made property transactions in WA much ezr than states who are not. (But I still avoid realtors in ALL states. (USA). Foreign countries often have a more reasonable value for the service of realtors (commissions around 0.5% to 1.0%)
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Old 11-14-2017, 11:48 AM
 
Location: WA
2,838 posts, read 3,945,537 times
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None of this is unique to Vancouver or WA. It is very similar in most other states.

The reason that the contracts are binding is that the only way the agent gets paid is if you close on the house. It is not fair to the agent to have them spend a month finding houses for you and then have you turn around and buy through another agent or through a FSBO.

If you don't like it you are free to negotiate different contract terms with your agent of choice or, alternatively, just go the traditional route of using sellers agents and doing your own due dilligence.

For what it's worth. I've bought and sold 4 houses over the past decade or so. We never used a buyers agent, just an ordinary agent each time that we found and liked working with. But each time I did an extraordinary amount of my own research on each market and (I think) ended up knowing more than the agents about some things. With the amount of information out there online on city, county, and real estate web sites that is pretty easy to do.

NOTE: I've found that you don't really want the same kind of agent for buying and selling. When we sold we found a very aggressive high performing agent who seemed to have everyone in the business on her cell phone speed dial and was able to find lots of buyers quickly through her contacts. She ended up generating a mini bidding war and this was in Central Texas, an only lukewarm market at the time. She had a great photographer and everything to do with the listing was done super professionally and fast. She also had all the best contacts for repairs and such to get the house ready quickly and cheaply. And gave us prime advice on staging for that market. But she would have been way too busy to work with if we were buying. We'd be needing to fit into her busy schedule to see houses rather than vice versa. Better to work with someone a bit less busy who has the time to show you houses at YOUR schedule when you are buying.
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:12 PM
 
106 posts, read 84,941 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by texasdiver View Post
None of this is unique to Vancouver or WA. It is very similar in most other states.

The reason that the contracts are binding is that the only way the agent gets paid is if you close on the house. It is not fair to the agent to have them spend a month finding houses for you and then have you turn around and buy through another agent or through a FSBO.
In Michigan, where I'm from, a real estate agent chosen by a buyer has fiduciary duty to the buyer unless they are also the listing agent.

I get that they want to be paid for their work, but if I find a house myself and ask an agent to represent me for that negotiation only, I don't see why I should have to deal through them for any other viewings or inquiries.

Quote:
If you don't like it you are free to negotiate different contract terms with your agent of choice or, alternatively, just go the traditional route of using sellers agents and doing your own due diligence.
This is what I was really getting at in my original post - how are alternate terms commonly structured and what constitutes due diligence.

<snip>

............

Last edited by Redbelly; 11-14-2017 at 01:13 PM..
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:14 PM
 
106 posts, read 84,941 times
Reputation: 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
......... (But I still avoid realtors in ALL states. (USA). Foreign countries often have a more reasonable value for the service of realtors (commissions around 0.5% to 1.0%)
Agree - real estate agents are like travel agents of yore - the internet has mostly pried off their grip on the monopoly of information, but they still want to get 6% off the top for often minimal actual work.
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Old 11-14-2017, 09:44 PM
 
Location: WA
2,838 posts, read 3,945,537 times
Reputation: 3431
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redbelly View Post
In Michigan, where I'm from, a real estate agent chosen by a buyer has fiduciary duty to the buyer unless they are also the listing agent.

I get that they want to be paid for their work, but if I find a house myself and ask an agent to represent me for that negotiation only, I don't see why I should have to deal through them for any other viewings or inquiries.

This is what I was really getting at in my original post - how are alternate terms commonly structured and what constitutes due diligence.

<snip>

............
If all you want is someone to help with negotiation then sure...go for it. Cut whatever deal you want with an agent.

But I think you'll have a very hard time actually looking at any houses you find through say Zillow that aren't FSBO listings because the normal way to arrange a viewing is through agent to agent contacts.
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