Brokers aren’t as loose-lipped as they appear to be. Learn just what brokers are saying to themselves—though never, ever to you
“I Don’t Work for You.”
“Real estate agents do not generally represent the buyer,” says Florida real-estate attorney Barry Ansbacher. “But buyers think they do.”
When calling in response to a listing broker’s advertisement or showing up at an open house, be clear on one thing: This person is employed by the seller of the home. That seller may be a private person or a corporate developer—and they are paying the agent’s commission. “My clients will say ‘I had a broker,'” Ansbacher says, “but the broker was not representing their interests.”
If you want to be sure you’ve got a pro looking out for you, enlist a buyer’s broker. This type of agent signs on to work exclusively for you in whatever deal you may strike, and can help you through the buying process, from search to offer to contract to closing.
“An Open House is for Me, Not You.”
An open house at an available home may seem to take place for the purpose of recruiting serious buyers, but these receptions are not really for the seller—they serve the agent’s long-term plan.
“Most people who show up are ‘tire kickers,'” says John Kavaller, an agent with Catskill Sales Associates Inc. in upstate New York. “People turn up to get a sense of the market or the neighborhood, but they are not ready to buy.” They tend to sign in, tour the place and then take off with the agent’s business card in hand.
The agent makes an effort to keep in touch with these some-day buyers, in hopes of closing a deal down the line.