I pretty much have recovered from trying the Microsoft Vista upgrade. I reformatted my computer, reinstalled Windows XP and all my other programs. One program I’ve had the most problems reinstalling is one that I use to do analysis of the MLS database but I resolved the installation problem with the vendor today, so I’m back in business!
The first report I just ran was to see how many Listing Agents were finding the Buyer and “double-ending” the transaction (represented both the Buyer and Seller). Out of the 422 single family homes sold on the Central Coast since January 1st, only 60 were represented by the same agent which is 14%. That means 86% of homes were sold by another Realtor.
The reason I wanted to see this percentage is the increasing practice by Listing Agents to not market complete information about a listing. This includes suppressing the street address when potential Buyers are searching listings on Realtor.com and sites like SloCountyHomes.com. Another example is empty flyer boxes.
Some Listing Agents believe that if they don’t include all the information, the potential Buyer will call them. Not only do they have a chance of “double-ending” the transaction and getting ALL the commission, but the belief is that if they get a potential Buyer to call them they can try to sell them another home if they don’t like (or qualify for) their listing. I’ve blogged before about how I would not want the same Realtor representing both sides in a high-dollar business transaction. I would want someone working 100% for me, not 50%! I would discuss this with the Listing Agent before you sign the contract and write in what you are comfortable with in the agreement.
One major problem with the “don’t give them all the info” thinking is that the Listing Agent’s contact info isn’t displayed on sites like SloCountyHomes.com (and all other Realtor sites too). So, either the potential Buyer will call another Realtor who most probably isn’t familiar with the other agent’s listing or they won’t call anyone and cross that home off their list. Either way, it’s not a plus for the homeowner who is trying to sell their home.
Empty flyer boxes are another matter. When I see an empty flyer box, the first thing I think is that the home may be off the market. According to the California Association of REALTORS, yard signs was the #3 way that Buyers found their homes (another Realtor and the Internet were #1 and #2). I think empty flyer boxes is really about laziness or counting every penny and not wanting to spend money on reprinting flyers and refilling the box. It’s amazing to me that an agent who makes $10,000 in commissions will work to spend as little as possible on marketing a listing. If you’re Listing Agent has left the flyer box empty for days and you can’t get them to refill it, I’d take a screwdriver and remove it from the yard sign.
With 86% of homes being sold by other Realtors other than the Listing Agent, do you want your home marketed to the 86%?? If so, don’t let Listing Agents use your home as a way to make them more money. Make sure they market YOUR home the best possible way!