Agents Who Represent Themselves May Have a Fool for a Client

By
Managing Real Estate Broker with eXp Realty RB-19250

I have noticed a pattern of behavior among several real estate agents that makes me think representing yourself can be a bad idea.  I know attorneys and doctors use other professionals to represent themselves and maybe we should consider that in our industry as well.

It seems that all logic goes out the window when some agents handle the sale of purchase of their own property. 

I have seen listing agent owners who:

  • Overprice their homes.
  • Under advertise it.
  • Do not clean them.
  • Restrict showing appointments.
  • Do not answer their phones.
  • Don't put pictures in the MLS.
  • Misrepresent the properties.
  • Have unpermitted work done.
  • Are generally difficult to deal with if in escrow.

Agent buyers who:

  • Shoot low ball offers.
  • Make offers that are mortgage fraud.
  • Are unreasonable at the time of the inspections.
  • Don't return phone calls or messages.
  • Don't follow the time line.

It is amazing at times to see an agent who is generally considered to be a top professional, do things they would never allow a client to do.  When their own money is on the line they turn from Dr. Jeckle to Mr. Hyde.

Just something to think about.

Posted by

 

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Randy L. Prothero, REALTOR®

Broker-in-Charge, ABR, AHWD, CRB, CRS, e-PRO, GRI, MRP, SFR

eXp Realty

Team Leader - "The Prothero Group"

Randy Prothero is well established as an expert in working with military / VA clients and first time home buyers.  His home seller's (listing) campaign is one of the most aggressive marketing programs in the area.  His luxury home listings sell faster and for more money.

Based out of Mililani, Hawaii. Randy services the island of Oahu (Honolulu County) Performs mediations and ombudsman services for the Board of Realtors.  To improve overall professionalism in his area Randy also offers classes for real estate agents. 

www.HawaiiRandy.comOahu (Honolulu County) Property Search  Hawaii Military Relocations

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Rainmaker
103,165
Cat Zwicker, CRS
Desert Sky Real Estate, LLC - Redmond, OR
Down to Earth Service; Out of this World Results!

Our E&O policy actually has a clause that gives the insurer an out if the agent represents themselves and there is a problem. I'd think that alone would make most people stop and think, but in my office agents still do self representation. 

Sep 29, 2008 02:55 AM #80
Rainer
24,235
Richard Halpern
Coldwell Banker Commercial NRT - Ellicott City, MD

A lot of what your stating is not only true in residential but also commercial realty.

Sep 29, 2008 03:02 AM #81
Rainer
79,894
Nelya Calev
John L Scott - Bellevue, WA

I could not have agreed with you more!! I have worked with an agent that represented her own home, that was not fun.

Sep 29, 2008 03:51 AM #82
Rainer
8,070
Louis Agudo
Home Sweet Home Inspection Services - Roswell, GA
Roswell Home Inspector

I'll give you a perspective from a home inspectors point of view.

If I happen to be inspecting a home and the seller is at home but not an agent, I will ask questions about the home and get information that can be useful. The seller is usually forthright and willing to disclose and at times even add more information then I asked for.

If the seller is at home and is also the listing agent, it is like pulling teeth when I ask a question. I have inspected homes where the listing agent is the homeowner. I would say that in 75% of those inspections  I was treated as a district attorney trying to get to the bottom of a crime. The three answers to any question I ask is usually, yes, no, I don't know.

Sep 29, 2008 12:21 PM #83
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Laurie C. - She was wise to bring you in.

Tom B. - Agents can't go FSBO here, but I agree in the areas they can it is hypocritical.

David M. - I sounds like a consist condition from the comments.

Sep 29, 2008 12:52 PM #84
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Lane B. - So true.

Sharon P. - The best of luck.

Roland W. - Some days it is amazing.

Sep 29, 2008 12:59 PM #85
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Jeff B. - I have seen several go smoothly, but have seen a even more good sideways.

Myrl J. - It is easy to not be rational.  No different than many of our clients who are feeling the stress.

Diane B. - It is quite an interesting phenomena.

Sep 29, 2008 01:03 PM #86
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Gary W. - It happens all too often.

Brady - The bad agents will be bad on their own.  It is amazing to see the good ones lose it when it is their home.

Joan W. - There does seem to be a pattern of bad pricing.

Sep 29, 2008 01:10 PM #87
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Cat - Our broker is pulling our E&O policy to check for that.

Richard - I don't deal in commercial, so I didn't have any experience in that area.  I am glad you gave your input.  I might have guessed that to be true.

Nelya - The one I just did was challenging to say the least.

Sep 29, 2008 01:14 PM #88
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Louis - Great point.  I just saw that with the home inspector and the termite inspector.  The seller/ agent wanted to challenge both reports.

Sep 29, 2008 01:15 PM #89
Rainer
205,587
Sylvie Conde
Sutton Group-Associates Realty Inc., Brokerage - Toronto, ON
Broker, Toronto Real Estate

Agents here are getting more and more into the habit of not representing themselves.
I certainly would not put my own house on the market. 
I would like to have a Professional Realtor :) represent me, negotiate on my behalf and deal with the other agent and buyers, if necessary.  It's like having a 'shield' between me and the buyer.  I think it will be less stressful and less emotional (or at minimum, it will help me keep my cool, because I know, without a doubt, I will behave as a typical seller.  It is my house, after all.)
I think the E&O Insurance likes it better that way too.

Sep 29, 2008 04:27 PM #90
Rainmaker
337,635
Thesa Chambers
Fred Real Estate Group - Bend, OR
Principal Broker - Licensed in Oregon

great points - and you are right we often see our home differently than others do and we are busy - do we have time for our own houses?

Sep 29, 2008 05:49 PM #91
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Sylvie - I have not seen many agents here list there homes with other agents.  After Lenn's comment about E&O insurance we are pulling our policy to check it.

Thesa - In the slower markets agents have more time.  Possibly that is part of the problem.

Sep 29, 2008 06:07 PM #92
Rainmaker
76,483
Ronnie Margolis
KW Kauai - Kapaa, HI
Kauai Realtor - CDPE, ABR, RA - On Top of the Aloh

I have always heard your E&O does not cover you when you list your own home. Not sure if that is absolute or not. Anyway, when you draw the parallels to doctors and lawyers, hiring a good realtor starts to make sense. Besides, how are you to be unemotional about your very own property? Aloha from Kauai

Sep 29, 2008 07:41 PM #93
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Ronnie - All things that should be considered when selling your own home.

Sep 29, 2008 08:07 PM #94
Rainer
111,661
Carole Cohen
Howard Hanna Cleveland City Office - Cleveland, OH
Realtor, ePRO

I think you are on the right track, Randy.  I did however, sell my own home four years ago.  What I did first was to consult on listing price with my manager and two other agents in my office.  And then I said I wouldn't do my own open houses. I got lucky, it was at a time when supply was down, and then I set the listing price where it should have been.  I would not have, under any circumstances, handled a buyer myself.  I'm not saying no one should, I just know it would not have worked for me.

Oct 03, 2008 12:43 PM #95
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Carole - I could not even consider a dual agency on my own home.  I am sure the E&O insurance company would not even accept our calls.

Oct 03, 2008 02:08 PM #96
Anonymous
Sandy Blanton

I've sold a number of my own properties and would never hire another Agent to sell them for me. That said, I think it does require an objective view that many Agents don't have when it comes to their own properties. I think all of the complaints you listed are common with many Realtors, even if the home is not owned by the listing Agent.

Nov 04, 2008 04:36 AM #97
Rainer
33,944
Billy Jalbert
The Maui Real Estate Team, Inc. - Paia, HI

Randy,

Excellent points.  I was literally just thinking about the subject the other day.  Even though we are professionals, I think it is good idea to remove ourselves from the emotional attachment and practice what we preach.

 

Nov 04, 2008 06:06 AM #98
Rainmaker
663,057
Randy L. Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645

Sandy - I am working on another one as we speak where the owner lister hired another agent to represent them and they are still did some things that are scary.

Billy - It is definitely something we must all consider when selling our own property.

Nov 04, 2008 07:09 AM #99
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Rainmaker
663,057

Randy L. Prothero

Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645
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