asap help-- listing situation unfolding tonight--decision needed!

suz1023March 21, 2012

i have some angst about this and i don't know if it's justified.

an agent i met a month or so ago ran some numbers and we discussed placing my home on the market in a couple of months.

i like him well enuf i guess and may well have listed it with him.

yesterday he calls and says he has a wealthy buyer coming in from far away to look at a larger parcel of land right across the street from me. mine is much smaller but has some fabulous natural features which the larger parcels they are seeing do not have.

he wants me to sign a listing contract before he brings the buyer tomorrow. says he cannot bring the buyer if i don't sign.

should i sign?

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cmarlin20

Sign a three day listing. You needn't sign long term yet.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 10:31PM
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marie_ndcal

There might be a way to have you sign just to show your property to one person/ Could it be a big commission for him? Also I have read that even if the agent shows it and the buyer does not buy it, you still have to pay a commission.
Personally, I would not sign anything or commit verbally to anything. If the buyer is really interested, he/she will come back and contact your directly.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 10:33PM
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azzalea

Yes, it's true, he cannot show your property without a listing. I like the suggestion above, abut I'd add a second limitation--that it's a listing JUST TO SHOW TO THIS ONE potential buyer. If he's truly interested in showing your property to this buyer, he'll be okay with it. If he isn't (and insists upon a longer listing), then it would seem he's trying to bamboozle you into signing a listing, and I'd say his ethics are questionable at best. If that ends up being the case, RUN to an honest agent!

    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 10:35PM
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suz1023

the contract is for fifteen days with a clause that if this particular buyer buys within six monhts then i owe him the commission. which seems fair but he will also be the agent for buyer which has me uncomfortable.

but he says if i sign the listing contract first his loyalty will be to me not the buyer.

this really has me confused for some reason, guess i'm not seeing the forest for the dollar signs, lol.

thanks so much, please keep the info coming!

    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 10:38PM
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ncrealestateguy

Falling,
Yes, he will be acting as a dual agent in this case. Marie, above, is incorrect in saying that you will owe him a commission even if the buyer does not purchase your home. Boy, if it only worked that way...
Don't make more of it than it is.... you are a seller, he has a potential buyer, you now have a short term listing agreement. You are sitting in the catbird seat. Most sellers would be envious of you.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2012 at 6:55AM
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Billl

If he's only asking for a 15 day contract, this is legit. He's got an actual buyer and wants to show the property.

Just make sure you read the contract carefully and set a price you would be happy to get.

Honestly, this is the best of all worlds. Either you are going to get a quick offer or you get to test drive a potential agent for a future sale.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2012 at 9:00AM
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marie_ndcal

You might run it by a RE attorney before you sign. Sounds like he/she is pushing and who knows if there is really a wealthy buyer.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2012 at 12:01PM
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phoggie

Do as I did....give him a one day listing on the day he brings you a qualified buyer....it worked for me~~

    Bookmark   March 22, 2012 at 2:54PM
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ncrealestateguy

Marie,
Why in the world would she have to get a RE attorney involved to interpret a listing agreement. I am sure the poster can read and understand it.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2012 at 5:47PM
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azzalea

Well, no disrespect to you, NCrealestateguy--but those of us NOT in the business often have a hard time with all the fancy language (used to confuse) in contracts. Mind you, I have a genius IQ, and when we signed our first listing agreement, we were told (and I read the thing) to say one thing, when, in reality, it said something very, very different when you actually dissected the involved language. Could have been very detrimental to us, in the long run. But I found a way around it, thank goodness. And this was from a real estate agent who is KNOWN far and wide for being honest.

No, those things aren't always so easy to read and understand.
Whenever there's a contract question, or you want to be sure your interests are protected, it's NEVER WRONG to give your attorney a call.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 9:02AM
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ncrealestateguy

Maybe you're right...

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 9:32AM
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suz1023

well i left the note for him as requested pinned to the side of my barn because he didn't want the buyer to see me hand him the envelope.
the buyers did walk the land across the street from mine and then stood gazing at my brook and chatting.
they drove away before the agent came for the note.
he mentioned to my husband that they would come back when they had better shoes.
he then left and presumably read the note in which said i did not sign the contract because i did not fully understand it.
in the note i said to please consider the house fsbo (for yesterday only) and if his buyer bought my place i would honor a commission to him. and please let's get together asap to discuss.
he left and i haven't heard back.
so...?

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 10:02AM
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covingtoncat

Sounds like his potential buyer is a no go and therefore he is, too. I think it was putting too much pressure on you to make a decision in too short amount of time to really understand the ins and outs. I like the suggestion for one day or short term (a few days) listing.

Maybe you can have the details of an agreement worked out in case there is a next time?

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 11:22AM
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Billl

15 days is a short term agreement. It is probably his agencies standard short term window. You don't want a 1 day contract in case the buyer has to delay the showing etc. It isn't like he was asking for 90 days or trying to rope you into something long term.

Anyway, sounds like the agent was 100% above board.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 11:37AM
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sylviatexas1

so he was expecting to pick up a short-term listing when he brought the potential buyer, & you surprised him with a "please consider this a fsbo" note?

& you were worried that he might not treat you right?

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 6:08PM
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suz1023

not really sylvia.
i told him on the telephone that i wasn't sure i understood the document he wanted me to sign. he asked me to trust him and sign anyway.
in my note i did say that i would honor his commission
(the 3% i offered since he is also the buyer's agent).
he told me he could not legally show the land unless it was under contract with him, and i learned that is not accurate. if it is fsbo he can show it.
he asked me to trust him about the contract but he doesn't trust me to honor his commission?
i did speak with my attorney this morning and he says the contract was overly complicated and he wasn't thrilled about the high pressure.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 6:49PM
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ncrealestateguy

Mistake #1... the agent showed a property before he got a written Fee Agreement signed by both parties.
Mistake #2... you allowing an agent to show your property with him not knowing if you are FSBO or if he has a short term listing.

It has been my experience that when you present an attorney with ANY legal form, they are going to find items that are "overly complicated" even if the form is a standard state commission approved form.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 9:57PM
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suz1023

the agent emailed me yesterday. he apologised for rushing me and said the buyers are afraid of the brook because of their small kids, which i assumed they would be given the snow melt and how fierce it looks right now.
in my experience people who are used to living on the water are thrilled with the brook, but lots of people are really scared of waterfalls, especially with little ones.

anyway the agent and my husband and i are going to meet and see if we can work it out a listing to all of our satisfaction.

i really don't mind giving him a commission, after all he brings the buyers and will rep me in the sale i hope.
otoh if he reps the buyer as well i don't really want to pay more than my fair share of his commission.
we shall see-thank you all for your help!!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 1:33PM
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brickeyee

"those of us NOT in the business often have a hard time with all the fancy language (used to confuse) in contracts."

It is not "used to confuse" but to very specifically define the duties of each party with no ambiguity.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 1:55PM
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ncrealestateguy

Good to hear you feel comfortable trying to use this guy as your agent. Remember though, that if he brings you a buyer and you go to contract, then more than likely he will be acting as a dual agent and he will expect his full commission. Unless I am misundestanding your last post, it sounds as though you think you will not owe him the full commission if he brings you a buyer.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 9:07PM
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suz1023

thanks for weighing in still. i think the bottom line is that i just don't fully understand the process.
i thought each agent got 3%.
but an agent who lists and sells the same property gets the full 6%--half from the seller and half from the buyer.
so no matter what i only pay 3%?
and could one agent collect 6% from both seller and buyer for a 12% commission?

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 9:17PM
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terriks

The listing contract spells out what commission the seller will pay. The full amount is owed to the listing agent regardless of whether the listing agent brings the buyer or another member of the MLS brings the buyer. Part of belonging to the MLS is a reciprocal contract with all of the other member agents that the listing agents will split their commissions with the buyer's agents. In most cases the buyer does not pay a separate commission to their agent.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 11:01PM
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ncrealestateguy

Falling,
Assuming 6% is the standard commission in your area, then it is standard for the listing agent to receive 3% and any buyers agent to receive 3%. If your listing agent brings the buyer, he would receive the entire 6%. Like Terriks said, the listing agreement will spell out the details of the split percentages... they are almost usually split 50/50, but legally do not have to be.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 7:12AM
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sylviatexas1

Think of it this way:
you pay 3% for an agent to represent you, & you pay 3% to an agent for bringing you a buyer.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 4:04PM
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wanj

You can sign a commission only contract with the name of a buyer, the commission contract will say if he sells the property to that buyer, he gets the commission, other than that, he is not representing you in any other capacity.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2012 at 10:56AM
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