I recently had the pleasure of helping someone secure a place to rent. The elements of the transaction had everything I could have wished for. Great clients, a property that was perfect, and a quick deal. Especially priceless was the look on their faces when I told them I’d help them for free.
I first met my clients at a home I had available for rent. While it was a nice home it didn’t work for these two particular guys as they wanted something newer with a bit more space. As a good Realtor being thorough I followed up with them a week later asking if they had found a place. Now more often than not I’d be ignored, which I don’t love but it’s the nature of the business, but in this case they responded and said they were interested in a home that was a out of there price range by $200 a month. Being familiar with the home they were interested in I asked them if they wanted me to represent them. In doing so I explained to them that the listing brokerage (selling brokerage) pays my commission so they are getting all my great advice, my preparing of the documents and the offer, and my years of negotiation experience for free. They said “Yes” of course!
Commissions work the same way when buying a property. Typically, you are not paying a dime to the Realtor when using his or her services to find property. I say “typically” because the Buyer Representation agreement you sign is not a “standard” document with “standard” fees and you should always ask questions when signing documents. Anyway, I see it all the time. People looking for homes on their own only to bring in an agent at the last moment to sign the offer and sometimes they don’t even do that! Use someone who’s going to represent your best interests, not the interests of the Seller.
After I told them what I needed in order to make the offer attractive to the Landlord they produced everything within a day. Like I mentioned earlier these were dream clients and not because they had good credit and good employment, it’s because they listened carefully and the lines of communication were open and constant. Good rentals don’t last long on the market so the faster we can get our offer ready the better chance of getting the home you want. Fast forward a day and these two guys were now renting a place they loved in a location that worked for them and at a savings of $2,400 (real dollars) a year that I was able to negotiate for them, and it didn’t cost them anything except their faith in me as a good Realtor.
Now many agents don’t like finding rentals because of the low commissions paid by the listing brokerages. I look at it another way. People renting now may purchase something down the road but more importantly, when a deal goes smoothly it’s a great feeling for everyone involved including myself.