Ok, so this week I had something happen to me that has happened many times to most real estate agents across the country. Someone I knew and had a good relationship with used another Realtor to buy a house. A Realtor they do not have a relationship with. My first reaction is anger. “How could they?” They know I’m a Realtor. They know I’m not new to the business and I’m knowledgeable about real estate. They KNOW. It made me mad! To top it off, I knew these friends had a house to sell as well, so I would have been party to both sides of that transaction had they used me.
And so I thought about it some more. They most likely saw a house they liked either online or they drove by. They probably called the agent who is listed on the sign or property data sheet. That agent showed the home to them, they liked it a lot and the listing agent asked them if they’d like to write an offer (maybe enticing them to write now with the threat of other pending offers). The listing agent could have also offered them a discounted commission fee on the sale of their current home if they wrote an offer with them now. So many variables, but I can see how it most likely went down.
I don’t blame the other Realtor. They were doing their job. I don’t blame the home buyers. I blame ignorance. Ignorance of the way real estate works. Most of the population only buy a few houses in their lifetime. They don’t all know that Realtors only make their money when a property closes. We don’t have a salary. We depend on referrals of people we know, hang out with and do business with. We hope for loyalty.
So on that note, I want to have a teaching moment.
First…if you use the agent listed on the sign, you are not being represented by a Buyer’s Agent. You are being represented by the Seller’s Agent. This means that the Seller’s Agent is looking out for the Sellers interest first, before yours. So they may be fair and helpful to you, but in reality, they are working for the Sellers, not you. Use a Buyer’s Agent to help you buy a house…someone other than the listing agent.
Second…Keep in mind the people in your sphere of influence who are Realtors. Understand that this (buying and selling of homes) is their livelihood. As someone who knows you, they will make sure your interests come first, and they will do everything possible to protect you in this transaction. Please ask them for help first before using a Realtor you don’t know.
It comes down to education. I guess we, as Realtors, need to do the educating.
Have a great day!