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Old 04-02-2012, 12:07 PM
 
249 posts, read 299,163 times
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We'll soon be buying a house in the East End and are considering our options for realtors. Many of the recommended realtors for the areas that we're looking also have many listings in that area. It seems like a conflict of interest and I'm wondering if there are realtors that exclusively act as buyer's agents.

I'm not totally against using an agent with a bunch of listings in the neighborhood because it's not in their best interest to abuse their clients. My concern is that they would prefer that all sales in that neighborhood remain high so they might be less eager to get us the best price.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:21 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wyoh View Post
We'll soon be buying a house in the East End and are considering our options for realtors. Many of the recommended realtors for the areas that we're looking also have many listings in that area. It seems like a conflict of interest and I'm wondering if there are realtors that exclusively act as buyer's agents.

I'm not totally against using an agent with a bunch of listings in the neighborhood because it's not in their best interest to abuse their clients. My concern is that they would prefer that all sales in that neighborhood remain high so they might be less eager to get us the best price.
They want you to get the best price because they want the deal to happen. If a sale doesn't happen, they don't get paid.

The way it worked for me so far is that I went to see a home with the seller's agent. Didn't like the home at all, but continued to use that agent as my buyer's agent. I wouldn't seek an agent specifically outside of the area you're looking for. You want an agent that is paying attention to the homes on the market where you're looking, so they can find things you might miss or might not have access to.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:25 PM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
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A buyer's agent will work for you and not the seller. A listing agent may act like he's helping you, but his main interest is getting the seller the highest price.

Not all agents/brokers are Realtors.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:37 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Copanut View Post
Not all agents/brokers are Realtors.
Good to know, I've been using the terms interchangeably.

I would think that seller's agents would consider volume to be more important than price, at least the price on an individual sale. Taken as a whole, however, if it were me I would want the housing prices in my area of expertise to go up. So it would be against my best interest to get a good deal for someone as a buyer's agent.

It's all a corruption due to the percentage based commission system.

And remember that, as a buyer, I don't really know the value of housing in a neighborhood. I'm relying on my agent to tell me that.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:41 PM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
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Originally Posted by wyoh View Post
It's all a corruption due to the percentage based commission system.

.
Disagree. Try being an agent, it ain't easy. No steady income, no retirement plan, the agent pays for everything out of pocket.

IMHO everyone should work on a commission basis, makes people work harder. But, I could be wrong.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:45 PM
 
249 posts, read 299,163 times
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Originally Posted by Copanut View Post
Disagree. Try being an agent, it ain't easy. No steady income, no retirement plan, the agent pays for everything out of pocket.

IMHO everyone should work on a commission basis, makes people work harder. But, I could be wrong.
I don't mind the commission system, I'd prefer that it weren't based on the selling price of the house though. At least for buyer's agents.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:56 PM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
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What would you base it on if not the selling price?
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Old 04-02-2012, 01:16 PM
 
249 posts, read 299,163 times
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Originally Posted by Copanut View Post
What would you base it on if not the selling price?
I guess I see how a flat fee would be problematic. It just seems like every incentive for agents is to increase the price of housing which is at odds with what is best for buyers.

I think ultimately the answer will be the internet, as it is with so many other things these days. Eventually enough information will be available on the internet that all buyers will need is someone to do the paperwork. We're already well on our way.
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Old 04-02-2012, 01:21 PM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
12,163 posts, read 15,685,726 times
Reputation: 10139
Quote:
Originally Posted by wyoh View Post
I guess I see how a flat fee would be problematic. It just seems like every incentive for agents is to increase the price of housing which is at odds with what is best for buyers.

I think ultimately the answer will be the internet, as it is with so many other things these days. Eventually enough information will be available on the internet that all buyers will need is someone to do the paperwork. We're already well on our way.

But then you'll have to trust everyone that walks through your door, most agents prequalify. Are you aware of all the inspections and paperwork that an agent handles? Can you take off work to meet all those people?

Just playing devil's advocate.
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Old 04-02-2012, 01:30 PM
 
249 posts, read 299,163 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Copanut View Post
But then you'll have to trust everyone that walks through your door, most agents prequalify. Are you aware of all the inspections and paperwork that an agent handles? Can you take off work to meet all those people?

Just playing devil's advocate.
Your input is great, I've never bought a house before so I'm thinking these things through for the first time. Usually that means a lot of my notions can easily be corrected

I think seller's agents will continue to be valuable. On the buyer's side I could see it going toward a more flat-fee based structure based on the paperwork they do. Currently an agent does the same amount of paperwork regardless of the sales price. I would guess that any difference in work done by a buyer's agent between a $100k home and a $300k home is in the legwork they do in showing you homes, doing research, etc. That's the extra work that might not be necessary with the internet.

It's a moot point though because the seller pays all the commissions so buyers don't care. It's an ingenious system.
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