When Winnetka and North Shore real estate agents have listings we sometimes get calls from potential buyers who would like to view a property. The first thing we ask is are they already working with an agent. Often, they reply
that yes they are, but they don't want to bother them.
Say what? I wonder where people get the idea that it's okay to bother a total stranger but not the trusted advisor that they are working with to buy a home? Trust me: Bother your agent!
There can be a Pandora's Box worth of troubles for you if you call listing agents (or whoever answers the phone) when you have your own broker.
- the listing agent could consider you their client
- you may say something to compromise your bargaining position
- the listing agent is working for the seller, not you
- if you somehow end up buying the house with the listing agent, you will be in a dual agency situation. This is legal in Illinois, but many agents don't practice it because of the issues associated with it.
- you won't have your own agent present to advise and consult with
- you might deprive your agent of the opportunity to help you buy a home
When you are working with a real estate agent to purchase a home, you have entered into an agreement with them. You have probably discussed, in varying degrees, how much you can spend, your desires and needs in a home, and many other personal and highly confidential details that are private knowledge between you and your agent.
Skimming the interenet looking for homes in Winnetka and the North Shore is a great way to acquaint yourself with price vs value. It is also easy to see another agent's name. Usually the listing agent is named, but it can also be an agent who has paid for advertising. In many cases, that paying agent is from out of the area. Either way, you call them because you don't want to "bother" your agent.
Most of the general public does not understand how real estate agents get paid. They believe, wrongly, that we are paid by the hour, per showing, per client, etc. We are not. We do not get paid until we are sitting at the closing table with you and the home you bought actually closes. That's why asking an agent other than your own to show you a property is wasting their time. That's why if you already have an agent, call and bother them. They want to be bothered. It's their job. They will thank you for it!