I'll Only Work With The Listings Agent

Real Estate Agent with Jon Gosche Real Estate

What is dual agency?  Why are all these agents freaking out?  Here is my answer:  don't understand the problem! Well actually I DO! If both the seller and buyer understand what dual agency is there is nothing wrong with it. When we list a home we thoroughly explain to them what would happen if we found a buyer. It is impossible to exclusively represent two parties on opposite ends of a deal. A buyer and a seller. Our role changes from being an advocate for the seller (or buyer) to a mediator. The buyer may ask "do you think they will accept an offer for $$$ less than the asking price?" Answer: As we discussed you know that I can't tell you what they will accept and actually don't even know for sure. So let's write an offer and I will present it to them." Seller asks: Do you think they will come up? Same answer. "As we discussed if I am acting as a dual agent I can't tell you. You can accept it or counter offer and I will bring it back to the buyer" etc.

Of course actually these questions are rarely asked because we have already thoroughly discussed this with them when we first gave them the agency brochure required by the state of Idaho at the first substantial meeting. There is no reason to stop dual agency. There is reason for agents to be ethical and honest and for brokers to hold them to it and for the Real Estate Commissions to aggressively prosecute violators.

In short sales where price isn't usually the issue it is BETTER to have a dual agent because the game is collaboration, not competition. Everything needs to be done with full knowledge and understanding of the involved parties. A dual agent knows what is going on with the short sale and if he or she is a competent short sale agent the deal is more likely to close in our experience. Honesty and ethics and EDUCATION. It is our duty to inform and educate our clients. And documenty EVERYTHING.

Original content by Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner BRE# 01494165


The Southern Californian "Buyer's Market" is over! We are moving inventory as fast as it shows up on the market (time to focus on listings again). When working with buyers, I have to shift my efforts more to developing a personal relationship with the listing agent.....demonstrate why they should want to work with me instead of someone else.

Trust me....although the seller makes the decision, that's only based on price. All things being equal, a listing agent is always going to push an agent they feel they can work with easily.

I've worked hard to develop online lead development as well as pipeline. What I'm noticing, however, is that more and more prospects are calling me thinking I'm the listing agent. I'm not claiming this...but there is a consumer misunderstanding about IDX search results.

The trend toward calling the listing agent is the belief that allowing an agent to "double end" is the only way these buyers can get the home. Anctidoctally, they seem to be right. In out area, listing agents are routinely beginning to represent the buyers as well.

It used to be the case where the buyers believed they would save something by doing this. That they can negotiate a lower price based on reducing the agent's commission. Now...it's just getting the home for themselves. With such a low inventory....this gives them a leg up on the competition.

Discussion? And remember....in California, dual agency is legal.



 Karen Fiddler
The Fiddler Realty Team/eVantage Real Estate
Lic # 01494165


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Comments (2)

Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner
Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395 - Mission Viejo, CA
Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395

Jon, you've done a great job of explaining how this works. I completely agree with you that in a short sale, it's often better for both parties to have the dual agency. With an equity seller...personally, I believe my worth is in advocating for them and pushing for the best deal. That includes telling them when I think the buyer might come up, I do not want to facilitate the transaction, I want to advocate for my client...on either side.

Oct 23, 2012 12:39 AM
Jon Gosche
Jon Gosche Real Estate - Boise, ID


Not only do I tell a client what I think the other client might do I fish for information from the seller agent if I am the buyer's agent and vise versa.  Realtors often disclose information that the SHOULDN'T.  Also it is easy to find things like last sale price.  You can often find out how much they owe by looking up the deeds of trust on the property.  I disclose all I can to my client because that is the responsibility of an exclusive agent.

I am still comfortable in a dual agent situation because we are very careful and complete in disclosing that information to both sides.  Sometime we can mediate and keep the counter offers going until they come to terms when another agent might quit.   So dual agency can actually still serve both sides.  But you need to be honest, ethical, and give FULL disclosure.  I do understand that being uncomfortable and if it is then an agent should refer to the appropriate agent.  But that can be wierd too.  Like sending to a friend.  In Idaho we have assigned agency so a buyer and seller agent can be in the same company and it is supposed to work like they have an exclusive agent.  In my office I do not allow that.  If I have two agents on the same transaction we treat them as dual agents.  I think the assigned agency can really be deceiving.   Too often agents just talk too much.  Buty this is all just me.  I want my agents to give great honest, ethical service to all.

What about when you list and a buyer doesn't want an agent and wants to be a client?  That is either a cocky person or one who doesn't fully understand agency.  Thanks for your comments.

Oct 23, 2012 03:11 AM