Question about my Realtor

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Submitted by sobmaz on August 31, 2010 - 6:03am

I have a question for anyone willing to answer.

I have been working with an agent for about 12 months now. He has shown me a lot of properties over the months, however in the last 4 or 5 months I haven't seen much at all but have stayed in contact the entire time. Never found anything because of the low inventory and high prices for junk.

Now inventory has increased there is much more to look at. A house I really liked and from what I saw, a stellar price, came on the market. It was a short sale and I found out my agent was the listing agent. I made an appointment to see that house, about four days later. The day before I was to see it my Agent called and said it had been sold.

My question is.....have I been screwed? I feel as though my agent should have called and said, look, we have an offer so you need to come and see this house ASAP, since this was their short sale listing.

I feel as though my agent thinks that since I am their client they should save me for a regular sale so they can reap the entire commission whereas had they "wasted" me on the short sale listing he/she would only get the much smaller commission.

Am I off base here or was I screwed?

Submitted by deadzone on August 31, 2010 - 9:02am.

Why do you need an agent in the first place? Are you not capable of searching properties for yourself using sdlookup, redfin, etc?

Submitted by sobmaz on August 31, 2010 - 10:24am.

I can't get into the houses without an agent. I can't negotiate with the selling mls agent without either her or some other agent representing me.

I look everyday on sdlook up. I saw that house listed and contacted my agent to look at it. It happened to be his listing as I found out later on.

The only way I know of to see houses without agents is open houses or breaking in.

Submitted by sobmaz on August 31, 2010 - 10:26am.

Do you know how to buy from the MLS without agents? If so, please share.

Submitted by deadzone on August 31, 2010 - 11:33am.

Why don't you contact the selling agent directly?

Submitted by deadzone on August 31, 2010 - 11:34am.

You know you can represent yourself. THere is no law that says you need an agent. This isn't rocket science.

Submitted by Aecetia on August 31, 2010 - 11:35am.

Deadzone,

I like the way you think.

Submitted by DWCAP on August 31, 2010 - 12:12pm.

What I want to know is why you made an appointment for 4 days later? Were you out of town? Was the agent? If not, then why did you wait so long?

Also, Id talk to that agent, and ask WTF? depending upon his answer, you may need a new agent. Obviously there was appointment times ahead of yours.

Submitted by all on August 31, 2010 - 12:29pm.

sobmaz wrote:
Do you know how to buy from the MLS without agents? If so, please share.

If there is a sign just get the agent's number from it and call the listing agent directly.

Public part of the listing includes the listing agency. Look up the agency, get the phone number, call and tell them you are interested in the property.

Someone (sdr?) shared fairly inexpensive way to get limited (read only) access to MLS few years ago. IIRC, the trick is to sign up for a realtor class and CSUSM had it for $400 or so. With that you get access to private section, which includes the listing agent's phone number, private notes and more.

Submitted by sdrealtor on August 31, 2010 - 12:35pm.

It isnt rocket science and you dont need an agent. However, a good agent will protect you and help you make better decisions. If you go directly to the listing agent it is important to consider their primary allegiance is to the seller not you. The listing agent is also under no obligation to share any of the commission with you and many wont. With all that said feel free to go direct, it may work out for you better and it may not. You wont know for sure until you know for sure.

Submitted by sobmaz on August 31, 2010 - 2:45pm.

Jeeze!

The listing agent WAS MY AGENT! Please read original post.

The 4 day thing was when we were both available. Our standard relationship is, if there is a need to see the place ASAP we will drop what we are doing and go look at it. Since SHE WAS THE LISTING AGENT, past history indicates had she known of a pending offer she would have called to tell me. She did it many times before on other listing that were not hers so it was an unspoken given.

Let me ask again............THE SITUATION...... My agent had a short sale that I wanted to see. We made an appointment to see it 4 days after I called her. She said there were no offers as SHE WAS THE LISTING AGENT, she should know.

My question was basically, since SHE WAS THE LISTING AGENT, shouldn't she have called me and said, "we have a pending offer we better get you in there to look at it ASAP" IF SHE WAS A GOOD AGENT? Especially since she has called me in the past and said, "Sobmaz, I found out there is an offer so we probably want to see it right away".

Which then brings motive. Why would she treat this situation differently? What I am getting at is did she put her concern for commission in front of my desire for the best deal? Short sale commissions are much much smaller.

Now please, don't assume I am so stupid to know that an agent does not always put their interests ahead their clients but usually it is more subtle. This seems to be blatant. ( Or am I wrong?)

I am asking nothing else. I know on any house I can call the listing agent directly, I have done it many times but MY AGENT WAS THE LISTING AGENT. I know I could represent my self but an Agent still has to let me into the house. An agent still has to be dealt with.......BUT....I am not asking those questions.

Forgive me if I sound a little perturbed but I was basically asking a simple question about the ethics of my Realtor and the answers I get were more like how stupid I am for not representing myself and only dealing with the listing agent and blah blah.

Submitted by briansd1 on August 31, 2010 - 2:47pm.

sobmaz, it sounds to me like the agent liked someone else better than you.

Or perhaps she felt that the other buyer would be more likely to close on the deal than you.

It doesn't mean that your agent is a bad agent... But from some reason, the other buyer rated higher than you did.

Submitted by XBoxBoy on August 31, 2010 - 2:53pm.

Enough waffling around. Sobmaz... you got screwed. Plain and simple.

Okay, maybe there's an explanation. Maybe there's something you don't know. If I were you, this is what I'd do. Call my realtor and tell him/her I want a meeting. At the meeting, I wouldn't pull punches. I'd lay it on the line. "It was your listing, I'm your client, how come I wasn't the first person in that house taking a look and writing an offer?" If there isn't a damned good explanation, I'd be getting another realtor.

It's interesting that this thread turned into, "why do you need a realtor?" Well the answer to that is the realtor is "supposed" to be connected and plugged into the market. The realtor is "supposed" to be there to help you find good properties and be one of the first to get a look at them. And the realtor is "supposed" to be looking out for your interests. Sounds to me your realtor doesn't see it that way. Fair enough, but sounds to me it's time for you to get a new realtor.

XBoxBoy

Submitted by sobmaz on August 31, 2010 - 2:56pm.

Thanks

Are you an agent?

I am a solid buyer and would be paying mostly cash, if not all.

That is why I have got to wonder if that is the reason. I am such a solid buyer in fact that she knows someday she will get 3% (or 5 or 6%) from a sale so why waste me on a deal that brings 1%? It is my understanding that short sales only bring 1%.

I have been really loyal to this agent and intend to remain so but not if I feel like she is doing me wrong and that is what I am trying to get to the bottom of.

Thanks

Submitted by DWCAP on August 31, 2010 - 2:56pm.

I dont know about all that. That is why I asked about why the appt was 4 days in the future. Her first priority on that house was to represent the seller, not you. Now it would have been nice to do both, but she had a contract with them, and an understanding with you. Which one do you think she should represent first?

Say a day later some guy calls, says he wants to see it on the spot, and then writes an offer then and there. WHat is she suppose to do? Say, "Sorry, I have other people coming in the next couple of days and I want them to get the house, so I am gonna hold your offer?"

Sucks for you. I understand your frustration. Nice houses at good prices are rare gems right now.

Submitted by sobmaz on August 31, 2010 - 3:02pm.

XBoxBoy wrote:
Enough waffling around. Sobmaz... you got screwed. Plain and simple.

Okay, maybe there's an explanation. Maybe there's something you don't know. If I were you, this is what I'd do. Call my realtor and tell him/her I want a meeting. At the meeting, I wouldn't pull punches. I'd lay it on the line. "It was your listing, I'm your client, how come I wasn't the first person in that house taking a look and writing an offer?" If there isn't a damned good explanation, I'd be getting another realtor.

It's interesting that this thread turned into, "why do you need a realtor?" Well the answer to that is the realtor is "supposed" to be connected and plugged into the market. The realtor is "supposed" to be there to help you find good properties and be one of the first to get a look at them. And the realtor is "supposed" to be looking out for your interests. Sounds to me your realtor doesn't see it that way. Fair enough, but sounds to me it's time for you to get a new realtor.

XBoxBoy

Yep, that is what I am thinking and that is why I posted. I have pretty much decided to dump the agent but thought I would post here and see if someone could tell me why I was wrong.

This Agent has spent a lot of time on me so that is why I feel loyal but I am not a pushover.

Submitted by briansd1 on August 31, 2010 - 3:09pm.

DWCAP wrote:

Sucks for you. I understand your frustration. Nice houses at good prices are rare gems right now.

I think that sobmaz was wondering why the agent didn't call her to see if she wanted to put in an offer. That's the least the agent could have done for a loyal customer. Then the ball would have been in sobmaz's court.

Getting sobmaz involved in the offer would also have better represented the interests of the seller who might have gotten a better price, had sobmaz' bid been higher.

I'm thinking that, for some reason, the agent (who was also the listing agent) wanted to sell the house to the other party. Why? we don't know.

I agree with xbox. The agent screwed both the seller and sobmaz at the same time.

Submitted by sdrealtor on August 31, 2010 - 3:14pm.

Sounds a bit funky to me too. The commission on short sale should be at least 5%. Sometimes the lender will lower it if same agent represents both sides but all she needed to do was to have a colleague represent you to ensure full commission paid. Then she could throw the colleague a small bone for their time and each aprty would have separate representation which is better any way.

I think you should probably have that talk with your agent. I wouldnt be accusitory but I would want to know what happened. There could be a perfectly good reason. For her sake there better be...

Submitted by briansd1 on August 31, 2010 - 3:16pm.

Maybe the buyer was a good friend or relative of the agent?

Submitted by all on August 31, 2010 - 3:54pm.

briansd1 wrote:
Maybe the buyer was a good friend or relative of the agent?

Maybe the buyer is a good friend or relative of the seller?

Submitted by briansd1 on August 31, 2010 - 4:08pm.

captcha wrote:
briansd1 wrote:
Maybe the buyer was a good friend or relative of the agent?

Maybe the buyer is a good friend or relative of the seller?

That too.

Submitted by sreeb on August 31, 2010 - 5:38pm.

Do you know if the she represented the other buyer as well? If she did, she ends up in a pretty awkward situation getting you involved.

If someone else walked in, looked at it, and wanted to make an offer, through her on the spot, what is she going to do?

Submitted by SD Realtor on August 31, 2010 - 6:48pm.

Reading your original post I would say you were not well represented. I am going to assume that when you made the original appt there was not an offer. While you ASSUMED the agent would call you if an offer came in (which is valid) it does not sound like you told the agent to do so. However I agree that the representation was lacking and the performance of the agent was deficient. It may be a good idea for you to call the broker and present the situation to see what happened. At the very least confronting the agent and asking why the heck the agent did not call you immediately upon receiving an offer on a home you were CLEARLY interested in.

Poor performance based on your description of events.

Submitted by briansd1 on August 31, 2010 - 7:48pm.

sreeb wrote:

If someone else walked in, looked at it, and wanted to make an offer, through her on the spot, what is she going to do?

The agent would take the offer. She would also immediately call all her other potential buyers to see if they want to submit offers. Then she would submit all the offers to the seller.

In this case, the OP's agent is the listing agent on the house in question. The listing agent's duty is the find the best price for the seller.

Had the OP (sobmaz) been given the opportunity, she might have offered more money for the property.

Seems to me like the agent did not get the best price for house; and at the same time, she did a disservice a client buyer who really wanted that house, but was never given the opportunity to submit an offer.

The transaction really happened quickly on a great deal, so it's more likely than not that there was some undisclosed related-party deal making.

Submitted by CA renter on September 1, 2010 - 12:28am.

Agreed.

Sounds like the agent didn't represent Sombaz's (or the seller's) best interests, and for that, I'd seriously considering using someone else, or going directly through the listing agents, as mentioned above.

Submitted by ArmoRealtor on September 1, 2010 - 12:26pm.

There are all types of agents and all kinds of reasons they would act one way or another.

If I were you...I would ask your agent why they did not express the urgency to you to have a look at the home in less than 4 days or call you when they received an offer. They most likely have some sort of reason and if they don't or if their answer does not live up to your expectations you may want to find another one.

There are plenty of good agents and plenty that are not as good...just like any profession.

Submitted by drboom on September 1, 2010 - 1:22pm.

sdrealtor wrote:
It isnt rocket science and you dont need an agent. However, a good agent will protect you and help you make better decisions. If you go directly to the listing agent it is important to consider their primary allegiance is to the seller not you. The listing agent is also under no obligation to share any of the commission with you and many wont. With all that said feel free to go direct, it may work out for you better and it may not. You wont know for sure until you know for sure.

sdr speaks wisdom as usual.

I don't think it's realistic for Joe Consumer to operate without professional help (I tried for a while), but that doesn't mean you have to go the "full service" route. When I bought my house last year, I negotiated a commission split with my agent and did all my own research.

It worked out well for both of us: he showed me exactly one house rather than driving me all over creation, and I got the benefit of his experience and--above all--persistence throughout the annoying long short sale process ... along with a check for about 1% of the house's value.

Prior to engaging my agent, seller's agents had flatly refused to discuss commission splits with me.

Submitted by sdrealtor on September 1, 2010 - 1:47pm.

Absolutely and many cant split commissions with you. When I used to work for one of the Big Boys I could not have but now that i have my own gig, I can do whatever I think makes good business sense.

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