The first couple of years I was a Realtor, I never asked anyone to sign a Buyer's Brokerage Agreement for fear of sending them running to the hills! However, the more I have educated myself on the document, the more I realize it is a dual sided benefit. The buyers who choose to become clients open themselves up to a whole level of service that without the Buyer's Brokerage Agreement cannot exist (at least in Georgia).
In Georgia, due to BRETTA (Brokerage Relationships in Real Estate Transactions Act) we aren't allowed to offer client-level services without a signed agreement hiring us to do so. That's not to say that 9 out of 10 agents don't offer these services anyway, going against what the Real Estate Commission specifically allows us to do. Many choose to roll merrily along, offering client services to customers, not realizing, or maybe not caring, that it is unlawful here to do so.
So anyway, I have found that once your buyers hear what information becomes available to them once they sign, there is seldom any hesitation on their part. For example, by asking them these questions, you can determine if they want client-level services.
- If I knew the seller was distressed and would take less, would you want me to tell you?
- If I knew someone committed suicide here, would you want me to tell you? (Some people don't want to know, believe it or not!)
- Would you want me to explain the documents you will be signing?
- Would you want to be the first person I called if a real bargain became available in your target neighborhood?
- Do you want my help in negotiating the sales price and for me to provide you with a CMA to help you determine what price to offer?
I could go on and on, but I'm sure you get the idea. In Georgia, we are not allowed to do these things for customers (at least not legally). We owe customers Fairness, Honesty, and Accuracy. We owe clients everything else including negotiating, our expertise in any other area needed, and loyalty! Loyalty is the tricky one when you are in a dual agency situation. This is not to say that it can't be done, but I haven't found a way yet!
How do you guys feel about representing both sides of a transaction as clients?