Help! They've taken our commission!

Real Estate Agent with EWM - Coconut Grove


A new question has emerged to protect our commission.  2 agents in my office were working with customers, each asked them if they were working with any other Realtors.  Each agent worked with them over several weeks and both ended up at the same high end rental complex that cooperated with Realtors.  Each agent worked several days to complete all paperwork and did the walk-thru's.  Each agent did not get paid.  Why you ask? because the new question to ask(or I should say the additional question to ask) is "Have you register on any website to search for properties?"  Both of the customers had been searching the web months before wisely deciding to work with a Realtor.  Both of the customer's names showed up on the rental complex's database and they do not have to pay us.  So beware and add another question when working with customers.

Comments (17)

Andrew Trevino
ADT Real Estate - Wilkes Barre, PA
Wilkes-Barre Homes For Sale're kidding me! That's not something I've considered before. Thanks for the heads-up.
Aug 16, 2007 02:34 AM
Joe Sampson
Exit Realty Experts - Saint Augustine, FL
Claudia, I think I need more details here...did they register with the builder online and check a box of terms and conditions that stated they were not working with a Realtor or what? I know I've lost out because a customer walked into a builders office and registered, even put my name down as their agent but because I wasn't there(even thought I coach my buyer not to do this!) I didn't get paid. I still helped them through the transaction but I won't show that builder's developments anymore.
Aug 16, 2007 02:38 AM
Chuck Marunde
Sequim & Port Angeles Real Estate - Sequim, WA
Sequim Real Estate Broker


What a grave disappointment.  Thanks for a good example of another thing we need to watch for.  I do these short radio spots about 1 min 20 seconds called "Traps for the Uwary," and it tells short stories of things buyers and sellers need to watch out for.  Yours is a Trap for the Unwary for us as Realtors.  There are so many out there.   

Aug 16, 2007 02:40 AM
Lynda Eisenmann
Preferred Home Brokers - Brea, CA
Broker-Owner,CRS,GRI,SRES, Brea,CA, Orange Co

Hi there,

Interesting, this one is a new one on me, yet I guess I'm not totally surprised. Did the agent ever see any documentation in "advance" on the compensation agreement? Claudia, I'm sorry to say, I think it's also incumbent of the Realtor to ask this of the person who's paying the commission. Consumers today, sign up for things all over the Internet and may not always remember themselves.

Sorry to hear this has happened.

Aug 16, 2007 02:41 AM
Sarah Eubanks
Hill Valley Financial Services - Oregon City, OR
Preferred Oregon Loan Consultant & Notary Public
Yuck, Claudia!  I am sorry to hear of your misfortune in this arena.  I do not think that a rental of any kind in Oregon will allow a Realtor to set the transaction up.  At least, not to my knowledge!  Great job in the tip and informational hint.  That is what this website and community are about..
Aug 16, 2007 02:49 AM
Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty
Bucci Realty, Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Eighteen Years Experience in Brevard County
Another question to ask, I guess. Let' see - no pay, no work? Not that way in real estate as we work and hope to get paid!
Aug 16, 2007 02:50 AM
Charlottesville, VA
So this is a lease agreement? Question in Virginia is who is percuring cause not just first to sign up....
Aug 16, 2007 03:14 AM
Claudia Riva
EWM - Coconut Grove - Coconut Grove, FL

CHARLES - This was an application to lease and they were told they would get commission -

GARY - So right 

Sarah - Thanks


Aug 16, 2007 05:30 AM
Monica Rich
Berkshire Hathaway Florida Realty - Coral Gables, FL
Coral Gables Real Estate
Claudia - I had a similar experience.  I presented my case to the "Marketing Director" who had a lot more at stake than the Leasing office.   And because I am with a reputable agency that could potentially bring an enormous amount of business, they saw my side and I got paid! 
Aug 16, 2007 05:34 AM
Claudia Riva
EWM - Coconut Grove - Coconut Grove, FL

Chuck - Trap it is 

Lynda - When the agent was in the leasing office they were registered as the agent of record and assured they would be paid.  They never asked or mentioned the database or web.  Since both customers did it months ago before working with my agents, they did not mention it either.

Joe - What they did was enter their names on a website called, in order to view more info about that complex.  No questions about realtors simply fill out your name and email.

Andrew - your welcome

Monica - I'm going to look into that.  Thanks

Aug 16, 2007 09:02 AM
JoAnn Hostutler
EWM Realtors - Weston, FL
Claudia, This also happened in Broward.  Not good, but thanks for the heads up.  JoAnn
Aug 16, 2007 01:38 PM
Beth Butler
Beth Butler - Big Mouth Consulting - Miami, FL
It just isn't right.
Aug 16, 2007 11:49 PM
Victor Mills
EWM Realtors, Inc. - Pinecrest, FL

Good to know that this is possible Claudia. Thanks for sharing this. 

Aug 16, 2007 11:58 PM
Caroline Carrara
EWM/Christie's-Las Olas, Real Estate - Fort Lauderdale, FL

Truly unfair, I guess there is no way to prevent this, and I presume if you ask the customers first, they are unaware if they were searching the web that they had even registered.

Aug 17, 2007 04:46 AM
Debra Spadafora
EWM - Pinecrest, FL
Claudia thanks for the heads up. This is just wrong.  Some will think of any way they can not to pay a commission.  Maybe Monica's suggestion can help the agents get their earned commission.
Aug 17, 2007 04:53 AM
Karen Ross
Esslinger Wooten Maxwell - Weston, FL
Claudia -- thanks for this.  I brought it up to the trainees as a warning to them when showing rentals which we discussed Friday.  It was an angle I had not even thought about!  I'm always telling them, "90% of training is learning from other people's stuff that need not be repeated!"
Aug 18, 2007 02:59 AM

GREAT ADVICE!!! I was able to pass this along to all my colleagues.

I will be sure to watch for more blogs from Mrs. Riva.

Aug 24, 2007 02:12 PM