Buyer broker services - not impressed yet...

Just curious if anyone can shed some light on what my expectations should be of our buyer’s broker.

So far I have not been impressed. He has not sent me any listings I have not already found on my own. I have done most of the research. Of the 4 properties he has shown us…he has not offered us any professional advice. He has made the general comment that “he dosen’t like Mansard style roofs”, but that’s it.

What is the value added? What should I expect? Are buyer’s agents useful in writing up the agreement? I am just curious when this guy starts earning his part of the commission. Thus far he hasen’t shown us what he brings to the table.

Should I boot him? I haven’t signed any agreement with him, and becuase of that I am inclined to continue on with him to see what else he can do.

Any thoughts?

When you sat down with him to give him your expectations of him in writing, what did you tell him?

Are you paying him or does he derive his fee from your purchase of a property?

How did you screen him to decide that he was “your guy”?

As far as “…the general comment that “he dosen’t like Mansard style roofs”, but that’s it…”, did he say why or was he just stating his own personal opinion? If it doesn’t suit his personal style, tell him tat you’re the buyer. If he is stating this as some sort of fact (such as “I don’t like Mansard style roofs, they have a high propensity to leak”), then that may be value added.

I have an agent that I deal with. I don’t have a contract with her. I do a lot of the legwork. She is very astute as to the nature of the rental market here. She has owned and managed rental properties. She ‘gets it’.


different markets react differently to this representation. in dfw i am not working for a buyer until they sign a buyer’s rep agreement, and so there can be no true expectations. i do not search beyond the mls list for any nonclients. if you expect them to find unlisted or fsbos why would they do that with out an agreement so they can go to the seller saying " i am representing a client…" this is a mis understood situation by both buyers and agents. agents do much of the work after properties are sold, if they are any good. i have no properties to sell, i am a match maker and transaction coordinator. I must always have a clear understanding of who i am representing and what their expectations are.

Did you sign a buyers rep agreement if not call another realtor!

Even if you did you should be able to fire him at anytime!

Realtors are a dime a dozen I tell them all the same thing I will not sign anything they find a property I like I will by it If I buy it thru them I will also sell it thru them I look at a realtor as a bird dog!

I found this guy by referral. I really wanted to work with a woman who knows our target market very well, she owns 16 rentals and is the president of the regional landlord association. She was too busy to work with us, so she referred us to our current broker. When we sat down to discuss our goals with this guy, he said to us “there isn’t much I can tell you that you don’t already know”. While flattering to my ego, it isn’t necessarily the reason you hire a professional.

I didn’t sign a brokers agreement. He would get paid out of the proceeds of the deal. Being an attorney, I am leary about signing anything. However, I do feel strongly about a handshake deal. I don’t necessarily think this guy is bad. I am just curious if his value added might be at the closing table.

Also, his comment about the roof was in relaton to their propensity to leak.


       I respect that very much A hand shake really does not mean that much to most people now days. 

With you being an attorney let me ask you this if you do not mind If someone told you they wanted to have 2 attorneys for there Business would it hurt your feelings as long as you were getting paid on what you did? Probably not it would make you work harder! Right?
That is why I have the agreement I do with my realtors!

with this analogy there would be no billing for time, only the attorney who had the outcome i wanted would get paid, regardless of effort or time spent. as a realtor i would never work for someone who is working with another agent, in the same market. besides i emphasize, by law in the state of texas i am only required or allowed to represent my client with a signed agreement, regardless of compensation

Do you want to do all the paperwork and coordinate the closing of the property etc.? If you do, then don’t work with an agent. If you want someone else to do the paperwork etc, then work with an agent.

As a realtor, I prefer to have an agreement with someone for two reasons. The first is that I must have a written agreement to represent someone. However, you can be legally held responsible even without one. The second is that I want a commitment from the buyer that if I work with him, he will work with me too.

One last item. Who is the seller/buyer going to sue should something go awry in the deal? Anyone that was involved. If you have a listing agent, a selling agent, and a buyer/seller, then there are three parties that may (depending on outcome of case) have to pay for damages. That is a potential 3 way split. You just mitigated your losses in the event, however unlikely, something litigous should occur. Since as a buyer your agent gets paid by the seller, I think that is a worth while, albeit not guaranteed, insurance policy.

so let me get this strait if you came across an investor that did 30+ deals a month and told you that if you brought 10+ DEALS a month he would find a buyer! On the other hand he would not sign an agreement because he had enough business to keep 5 realtors busy. You would not work with him. I work with 10 to 15 realtors on the other hand only 5 produce one guy I bought 42 houses thru him because he works another guy has been calling me with B.S. for two years now and I have not bought one! So even though he is not good at his job if came across hi I should sign an agreement with him? NO WAY

There are good and bad realtor’s just like there are good and bad investor’s if you aren’t going to go big then go home! It is one of those cases where I pick and choose I am not a one realtor shop.

Even as a rookie investor why not have 10 realtors looking for you if you are going to use a realtor!

That’s why 10% of the realtors make 90% of the money it is the same for investor’s that is why I do everything different!

Let me clarify my previous statements. As a Realtor I prefer to have an agreement. However, as an investor, I would not want an agreement that limits me. If I had an agreement, it would not be an exclusive agreement.

I agree that a good Realtor will earn his keep and bring you deals. If he brings you good deals you will continue to use him. Personally, I don’t see any value for an investor in having an exclusive buyer’s agreement. I do see value for the Realtor though, exlusive or not. The agreement guarantees that he will be paid if he finds a property for you if the seller will not pay. (FSBO’s typically don’t want to pay a commission, but usually will if the Realtor is any good at his job.) By having an agreement, the Realtor is assured he will receive a commission either from the seller or the buyer (but not both).

Many Buyers have no loyalties and you lose the deal easily. However, my personal opinion is that an investor is not the same as a typical Buyer. Investors know how the process generally works and know that they are in this for the long haul. Therefore, they are loyal to the Realtor that finds them deals. The “general buying public” are ready to work with any agent that happens to be available to show them a house and write up the deal. This includes the listing agent that may not represent them or their interests. They just want the house and don’t particularly care who takes care of them since they aren’t paying anyway.

I agree 100% carlittle it is nice for a normal buyer on the other hand I am not a normal buyer!

the reason 10 per cent of the agents make 90 per cent of the money is because 90 per cent of the agents work for people who promise to bring lots of deals if they will work for nothing most of the time. i work for investors as zero per cent of my business, mostly because it is wasted dead end busy work, and because for seasoned investors they do not need the help except possibly at the transaction level. i admire and appreciate true real estate investors, most individuals are wanna be investors who watch alot of late night tv. most agents can tell when a “seminar” has taken place locally.

Very true aimarealtor. Regardless of the role of the client, if they are not serious, move on.

I am sure we all can understand not wanting to work for the out pouring of fly by night investors that run you ragged and never make any deals. And I am sure you both represent the realtor community very well.

But this is a forum for the RE investor, both new and old. And the gentleman was asking about the level of cooperation he should expect from his realtor. Sure an exclusive agreement is in teh best interest of the realtor, but not always in the investors best interest.

I am sure each individual realtor has thier own opinions about dealing with investors. I know everything I have read so far suggests that a potential investor be upfront with thier intention when approaching a realtor. If the Realtor has such a low opinion towards investors at any level I am sure they can voice that concern and end any potential relationship at that point

I am guessing that most of the time the realtorhas more experience then the investor and is much better prepared going into the relationship. If a begining investor is hessitant about signing anything that may lock him in or limit his potential, I wouldnt blame them.

Either way the investor is a part of your customer base, weather or not you choose to persue that portion of your customer base is up to you, but should still be treated as a potential customer. You never know when that same investor may be interested in purchasing a property your representing down the road.

Baloo hit it right on the head

I am sure we all can understand not wanting to work for the out pouring of fly by night investors that run you ragged and never make any deals. And I am sure you both represent the realtor community very well.

This is the prob. that investors and realtors have! no one thinks the other is serious! I ran into that prob. for years…

And still do. great post baloo

Also imarealtor not only can you tell so can I when I start getting odd calls the funny part is I can also tell them what course they took by what they say… I always laugh.

Well I guess I opened a can of worms…

But I still am not sure what I should expect from this guy. I would like more input from him on the actual buildings and local market. So far I have been disappointed, becuase he has not offered any of his personal opinions about the properties. On the other hand he is not pushy - which I do like. At this point I don’t see the value added.

However, the reason we initially decided to work with an agent to help us with the transactional side of the deal. I don’t feel confident in my abilities (yet) to structure a deal - I think if I watch a pro do it a few times then I will be okay.

My other fear is that we will get stale as a client for this broker. Obviously we are interested in finding the right property and so far we haven’t found one where the #'s work. We are looking for 3 family - but they are prices for OO and we are looking solely for a rental property. So we have found that there are no properties in the area we have identified to move on…my fear is he will stop wanting to work with us.

Also - isn’t the realtor working for a sale…so why would it be in their best interest to point out flaws to the property?

<<Also - isn’t the realtor working for a sale…so why would it be in their best interest to point out flaws to the property?>>

A buyer’s broker had a fiduciary responsibility to his client…while his ultimate goal is to make a sale, he is also responsible to look out for the best interests of his buyers…

The selling agent on the other hand…


I am a college degreed, not in real estate or finance, licensed Realtor. Many agents/realtors are not college degreed, regardless, most realtors that i have observed are great at customer service, resourceful in finding out about the issues that face homebuyers, but not at all, myself included versed in the issue of due diligence and investor issues. I think a realtor is your best advocate for homebuying, but for investing, there are other more qualified professionals that understand the cost analysis and due diligence process. This is by no means a slam to anyone, but rather a suggestion that you are looking for qualifications in a professional that may not exist. When you hire a licensed real estate agent as a buyer’s agent, they may be overstating or you may be assuming they know about investor required issues. If you were a corporation with financial holdings you would not be looking for a Realtor but rather a financial analyst, due diligence specialist, i am not sure if this professional exists for the smaller individual investor or if in fact that is over time what you as the investor will learn. My point, sorry for windedness, is that an agent can help alot, but may not be able to provide you with what you are asking, and they should admit that and only offer the services they are competent with.

Great post! I agree with you 100%

My relationship with my realtor is good; she finds properties…burries me in MLS and leads and I decide whether or not the cash flow works for me. I would never expect her to find an income producing property for me; it isn’t her job. She knows this, I know this and all is good.