Can I Speak With The Listing Agent?

By
Real Estate Agent with Jeff Fritzson Real Estate, Ebby Halliday Realtors 0629874

As a professional Realtor® in Frisco Texas, I, like many others, always have work to do. When I work my broker's office phones, one of the last things I want to hear is, "Can I speak with the listing agent." This is not because I am missing out on a possible client but rather someone is most likely making a mistake. This is not always the case but more often than not it does not work out to their advantage.

Is This A Mistake

Think about this. You have made the decision to purchase a home. You drive around the  neighborhood where you want to live and see a sign. You call the number and ask for the listing agent or you direct dial the listing agent's number. If you are not familiar with agency in Texas then you may not be aware that you may be making a costly mistake.

Who Represents Whom?

The agent you are talking with already has a fiduciary relationship with the seller. This means they have a loyalty to their client. They must put the client's needs above their own and their broker's. As you speak with them everything you are saying can be used for the seller's benefit not for yours. In fact you will never usurp the seller as the agent's primary focus. The best you can hope for is that both the agent and the seller agree to let them represent both of you.

Representing Both Sides?

This is not truly representing both of you but rather not representing either of you. Yes they can still provide you with facts and still oversee the paperwork of the transaction but they can no longer give advice or recommendations to either party. That means you will be dealing with the seller one on one but using the agent to present your offer and other communications just as they will present the seller's counters and other communications.

Represent yourself?

Remember you may not know the background of the seller. Are you ready to go up against someone else who may have bought and sold many local homes or go up against a professional realtor on your own? The bottom line is that in any real estate transaction, unless you are an expert real estate buyer, you are much better off with representation. You want some one on your side, loyal to you and putting your needs above their own and their broker's. A buyer rarely pays for representation. The seller pays the buyer's agent out of their proceeds.

Buyer Representation

So the next time you think you want to speak with the listing agent, take a second and review. Once you weight the differences of being represented by someone who puts your needs above their own, who is dedicated to being your advocate, who does this every day for a living, who has the local expertise, and who will go to battle for everything and anything you request at no cost to you, I think you will make the right choice and say, "I would prefer not to speak with the listing agent." When you do you are really saying I want someone on my side.

By the way I let my sellers and buyers know up front that I do not work both sides of a transaction. When you pay me for my services, I want to provide them including my advice and recommendations, not just facts.When you are ready for someone on your side to fight for you and your needs in North Texas, call me and find out what my other clients found out.

When you work with me—Your Success is My Focus.

 

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Re-Blogged 3 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Lesley Wilson-VanGoethem 04/25/2014 08:43 AM
  2. JodiAnn Garone 04/26/2014 12:18 AM
  3. Susan Haughton 04/28/2014 11:47 AM
Topic:
Home Buying
Location:
Texas Collin County Frisco
Groups:
Realtors®
1st Time Buyers
Real Estate Rookie
Frisco Texas Real Estate Community
Bananatude
Tags:
listing agent
agency
buyer agent

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Ambassador
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Tammie White, Broker
Franklin Homes Realty LLC - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN Homes for Sale

Jeff, I've said this so many times, in so many different ways, I'm blue in the face. And yet, I see buyers making this mistake over and over again.

Apr 25, 2014 07:45 AM #24
Rainer
96,912
Jeff Fritzson: Frisco Real Estate Pro
Jeff Fritzson Real Estate, Ebby Halliday Realtors - Frisco, TX
Your Success is My Focus!

Hi Gerhard - thank you for your comment. If we want to be technical about it, the listing commission is between the seller and the listing agent but I understand your point. That is what makes this a great business, we can all market ourselves the best way we see fit.

Apr 25, 2014 07:48 AM #25
Rainer
96,912
Jeff Fritzson: Frisco Real Estate Pro
Jeff Fritzson Real Estate, Ebby Halliday Realtors - Frisco, TX
Your Success is My Focus!

Hi Tammie - I have even read your posts describing this in different ways. Unfortunately not all of our buyers are reading our posts. I guess it doesn't hurt to keep on trying to educate them. Thanks for your comments.

Apr 25, 2014 07:49 AM #26
Ambassador
1,876,637
Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth

Jeff, excellent overview of agency. The public naturally is confused, the sign says for sale, and there is a name and number on it. I made the same mistake before I was in real estate.

Apr 25, 2014 08:15 AM #27
Rainer
355,882
Tom White
Franklin Homes Realty LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.FranklinHomesRealty.com - Franklin, TN
Franklin Homes Realty LLC, Franklin TN

Jeff, educating the public on this important issue seems to be such an uphill battle it's frustrating! What's interesting is that in many cases we're hearing the listing agents say the very same thing! 

Apr 25, 2014 09:10 AM #28
Ambassador
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Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Calling the name on the sign is seldom the best resource for a buyer. They will always end up with second class service.

Apr 25, 2014 11:38 AM #29
Rainer
211,241
Jack O'Neal
Conway Real Estate - Gilbert, AZ

Jeff, I couldn't agree more!  You always want to be dealing with the person who is on your side, who will go to battle for you, who knows the area best, and who is the expert.  Not the listing agent!

Apr 25, 2014 11:55 AM #30
Ambassador
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Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Jeff, like the idea of NOT WORKING FOR BOTH SIDES - I am yet to practice that.

Apr 25, 2014 12:31 PM #31
Rainmaker
1,317,476
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

"The agent you are talking with already has a fiduciary relationship with the seller. This means they have a loyalty to their client. They must put the client's needs above their own and their broker's. As you speak with them everything you are saying can be used for the seller's benefit not for yours."  I am amazed how many folks just don't get this even when I explain and give examples.

Apr 25, 2014 12:46 PM #32
Ambassador
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Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams Fox Cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Well explained Jeff.

Apr 25, 2014 12:52 PM #33
Rainmaker
2,655,894
Debbie Gartner
The Flooring Girl - White Plains, NY
The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers

Super post, Jeff.  Yes, many don't realize they are making a big mistake going directly to the listing agent.  It can only hurt them and it will never help them.

Apr 25, 2014 07:43 PM #34
Rainer
96,912
Jeff Fritzson: Frisco Real Estate Pro
Jeff Fritzson Real Estate, Ebby Halliday Realtors - Frisco, TX
Your Success is My Focus!

Hi Gary - thank you for your kind words. WHen making the biggest investment of your life, professional guidance can save you from a big mistake.

Hi Tom - I had that happen on my last listing. I had two unrepresented buyers look at the home and I had to explain I did not want to help them make an offer. I convinced them to let me introduce them to qualified agents in my office to represent them. They really appreciated the professionalism.

Hello Ed - your first class call to the listing agent got you second class service. I think I like that.

Hey Jack - you got that right.

Hi Praful - I certainl;y don't want to work for both sides, one is quite enough.

Hello Joan - I think thoe four statements you wuote should be explained to new home buyers.

Thank you Bob.

Hi Debbie - thank you for your kind words. Great to hear from you.

Apr 25, 2014 10:22 PM #35
Rainmaker
2,426,419
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

This business teaches and I remind myself to be a good student so that I can keep learning. There are many ways to skin the cat...If one is open and has the tools

Apr 26, 2014 12:07 AM #36
Rainer
182,493
JodiAnn Garone
Century 21 Action Plus Realty - Freehold, NJ
Bringing you Home!


Apr 26, 2014 12:15 AM #37
Rainmaker
2,765,619
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

Jeff, So many people make the mistake of feeling they have an advantage working with the listing agent. 99.999% of the time that is just not the case.  Another great post by Jeff Fritzson.  Congrats on the Feature.

Apr 26, 2014 12:42 AM #38
Rainmaker
2,189,295
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

I cringe when I hear a buyer say she is talking to me because she wants to work only with the listing agent. I think to myself, oh, you stupid $#*% moron. But then I realize she just doesn't know any better. Ignorance you can fix. Stupidity, you can't.

Apr 26, 2014 02:49 AM #39
Rainmaker
303,859
Liz Lockhart
Riverbend Realty, Cape Girardeau, MO - Cape Girardeau, MO
GRI, Cape Girardeau Real Estate

The false assumption made by would-be buyers is that the listing agent KNOWS more and, therefore, will TELL more to a buyer. Not so, amigo. In fact, your best bet at getting more information will be to work with a persistent buyer's agent.

Apr 26, 2014 11:47 AM #40
Rainmaker
1,014,221
Rob Arnold
Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc. - Altamonte Springs, FL
Metro Orlando Full Service - Investor Friendly & F

I think some people believe if they deal directly with the listing agent, they will get special preferred treatment because the listing agent will be getting both sides of the commission.

Apr 27, 2014 12:15 AM #41
Rainer
96,912
Jeff Fritzson: Frisco Real Estate Pro
Jeff Fritzson Real Estate, Ebby Halliday Realtors - Frisco, TX
Your Success is My Focus!

Hey Richie - good qualifier - if one is open and has the tools. Thank you.

Hey JodiAnn - Thanks for dropping by but I cannot read your post.

Hello Kathleen - you are very kind and  apprecaite your time to read and comment.

Hi Elizabeth - i have had conversations with unrepresetned buyers at my listings and I tell them I cannot helkp you with an offer and before you represent your self let me refer you to a professional realtor for you to work.

Hello Liz - this is a well said - your best bet at getting more information will be to work with a persistent buyer's agent. Thank you

Hi Rob - I don't know if listing agents ever give up part of their commisions because they are working both sides but for me it doesn't have to do with the money as getting a slightly lesser price may not make up for buying the wrong house because you did'nt have a professional uncovering things for their buyers.

Apr 27, 2014 01:57 AM #42
Rainmaker
797,359
Troy Erickson AZ Realtor (602) 295-6807
Good Company Real Estate www.ChandlerRealEstate.weebly.com - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

Jeff - It's amazing that so many people still do not understand agency. I have lost a couple of deals where buyers I had been working with contacted a listing agent directly and purchased the home through them. After I explained what they had done, they apologized and realized what a mistake they had made, but it was too late.

It also taught me to get a signed buyer/broker agreement, no matter if you are working with friends or not.

Apr 27, 2014 04:51 PM #43
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