seller's REagent is showing us the house

choochnbobAugust 22, 2009

So we were interested in seeing a property for sale. We are acquantences of the owners and they seem nice and honest. Anyway, I called them to ask if they had an open listing with their agent and they said no and said to work with their agent to see the house since that is the contract they have with him. So we did and he took us out to see it and we like it and are going back tomorrow to see how the kids like it- their realtor is showing it to us again. If all goes well we plan to make an offer- 1% lower than asking price with the contingency that we sell our current home. So my question is---do we really need a buyer's agent on our end? We figure that we'll hire the same realtor to be our selling agent and therefore he'll make some decent $$$ if he sells our house b/c then he's making the whole kitten caboodle commission on the house we want to buy plus at least his seller's % when we sell ours. Around here that's about 7.5% total. So we think that he'll have a pretty huge incentive to get a deal done and sell our house so that the 2 deals go through and he gets a fat check. If, on the other hand, we go with a buyer's agent to write up an offer on their house then their selling realtor won't make as much on the 2 deals and will have less incentive to get it done. We wboth want to make this happen as quickly as possible in this market. I know this is unconventional and I wonder if it's even illegal for him to show us the property without any written disclosure that he represents them. I mentioned that I know full well that he is representing the sellers 100 % here and not us so maybe that counts asdisclosure.

Is there some major flaw in our thought process? Do we really need a buyer's agent????

Thanks for any insight anyone might be able to provide.


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If that agent has already shown you the house, stay with him, if you want your own representation, hire an attorney to review the contract and offer advice.
I would only list my house with him if I thought he was the best agent for the job. Yes, he has a lot of incentive to sell your house, but some are just incompetent, is he, I don't know. Interview him carefully before committing to list with him, interview other agents first.
What state are you in?

    Bookmark   August 23, 2009 at 11:13AM
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"if you want your own representation, hire an attorney to review the contract and offer advice. "

GREAT advice. Hire him/her before you sign anything.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2009 at 12:12PM
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Why are you so sure that he represents the sellers 100%? These days, at least in some states, it is common for the agent to become a transaction agent when he is the listing agent and also "brings" the buyer. when a transcation agent, they don't represent one party or the other, and area handing it as a transaction.

Also - realize that when it is time for you to be the seller -that this is a separate deal and he will then be your seller's agent. You will need to find out if he stays your sellers agent if/when a buyer comes directly through him. Your contract would state this.

I think your idea of using him for buying this house makes sense - I would do the same thing. I am not sure, though, that the sellers will agree to a home sale contingency. I wouldn't if I was the seller.

Also, you need to really be sure if you hire him as your listing agent. Is he familiar with your area? If not, don't hire him. Also realize, what if your don't come to terms with buying this home? you still want to hire him to list your home?

    Bookmark   August 24, 2009 at 1:05PM
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I bet you would not hire the prosecuting attorney to represent you if you were walking into a courtroom, right? Then why would you even be speaking with the other sides representative. I guarantee you that you already have told this agent things that they can and will use against you during negotiations. Even the smallest details can reveal a lot about your motivations.
The days of driving around the town and calling the listing agent for a showing or, for heavens sake, having them help you write up the offer is crazy when you can have an experienced Buyer's agent at no cost.
You say that this agent will have a big incentive to get this deal done because then you will use him for your transaction. Guess what? He has a huge incentive to sell his CLIENT'S property to you no matter if you use him as the agent or not!
If the agent did not disclose to you who he represents and explain to you the three types of agency relationship, as soon as he met you, then he is already taking advantage of you.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2009 at 5:37PM
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Be careful, I am an agent and had to represent the buyer and seller once. I will not do it again. The money is nice, but I felt that I could not fairly represent either side. I could not reveal any info. about the buyers to the sellers - and vice versus - like I normally could. I also could not reccomend a price to either side because I would then be leaning to one side over the other. Just my experience. I would rather give the money away, so that I could represent my seller and get glowing reviews on the great job I did for future referrals, than to do half the job I could do for double the money. But that is just me. My clients are very important to me and I would not want to compromise that for anything. Some other agents will try to make you feel they can do both but it is not possible to do honestly.

Here is a link that might be useful: My Website

    Bookmark   August 24, 2009 at 6:29PM
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I disagree, I've used the listing agent successfully and have glowing things to say about some of the dual agents I've used. Just got off the phone with one I used several years ago, I'd use him again in a heartbeat. That agent
Some will try to dissuade you, but I'm wondering about the fact that you've already been shown the house by the LA, apparently you let that agent know he will rep you.
I don't see anything dishonest about dual agency, sure your agent will not give you a much info, but I don't expect that anyway.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2009 at 7:47PM
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Guess what? I did have a buyer's agent last time around in home buying. Did he represent me in any way, shape or form -- absolutely not. He represented himself in wanting to get the house to close. I don't have any huge complaints about this situation, but the idea that there is an advocate for the buyer is pretty much a fairy tale. The buyer must look out for own interests -- having an attorney is good advice.

Last time I sold -- my realtor also represented the buyer. I think it turned out as well as any other situation.

Good luck

    Bookmark   August 24, 2009 at 9:05PM
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You guys are way naive if you think a Seller's agent will represent your best interests more than a Buyer's agent.
A Seller's agent is legally responsible to keep the fiduciary responsibility to the Seller.
Sure, you might do one or two deals with the Seller's agent and come out clean, but in general, it is a practice that is risky and is disappering.
Susana says that her Buyer's agent did not represent her and that she advises to hire an attorney. Where do you think his interests lie?
I'm with cher1610... I stopped doing dual agency after three times. I beleive it is my responsibility to represent one side or the other, and to protect their interests.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2009 at 8:38AM
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You guys are way naive if you think a Seller's agent will represent your best interests more than a Buyer's agent.

Strawman argument..
Where did I state a sellers agent will represent my best interest more than a buyer's agent?

Dual agency works for me, if it doesn't work for you, don't do it.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2009 at 11:10AM
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I'm with Susanna on this. In selling my house even with a sellers agent I can see this happening.

Agents are loyal to the deal in play. They may seem to be on your side, but really are going the way of least resistance.

Do I feel betrayed in my agency relationship? no.

Do I feel that the advertised intensity of the promise of "i'm on your side and will fight for your best interests" was delivered, not really.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2009 at 12:11PM
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you are right... you did not.
But, most buyers are not a savvy as you are in the dealings of RE.
Chrisk, just because an agent tries to make the deal work, does not mean that he is not keeping the best interests of his client top priority. It is a fine balancing act with some deals, but agents that have been doing this for a long time do so by keeping their clients best interests above all else.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2009 at 1:00PM
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I previously bought a home, going directly through the listing agent. There were no problems at all.

I think the original poster is correct - the listing agent will really work hard to get this deal done, since the agent will be earning more because the buyer does not have a separate agent.

I personally think that the buyer is more likely to have the home sale contingency OK'd by the seller just because the buyer is also using the seller's agent. Why? Because the seller's agent is going to do his best to talk the seller into going with the home sales contingency and the agent will reassure the seller that this will work out.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2009 at 2:24PM
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