“Secret Agent Syndrome”

Niagara Real Estate Agents...Secret Agents

secret-agent-man-e1376314866249No one likes a complainer, but I am sure there are a lot of people out there that have an opinion about real estate agents and the industry that I work in. Lets just say there is a big reason I became a real estate agent and it wasn’t because of the money…..

I would like to cover an issue that has cropped up a lot in the last few months and lets just say it infuriates me. It is a result of two things….

1.  Real estate agents that don’t explain the basic rules of conduct for a client looking to buy a home.

2. Buyers that choose to abuse your willingness to help or just take advantage of agents when they have an agent they are working with.

I like to call this the “Secret Agent Syndrome”

It’s that moment when you realize that you’ve forgotten to ask someone if they’re working with an agent. You have done your part as an agent by asking the necessary questions to determine the type of home they are looking for, the price range they are in, and begun to send them houses to look at, and in most cases taken them to see one or two houses.

You have invested a few hours, some travel time, and some gas money. Then BAM they hit you with the “I guess I will have a look at the house with my agent!”

Now I like to give people the benefit of the doubt, but come on people….

Questions I always have to ask…

Are you really working with an agent?

Have you signed a buyer’s representation agreement?

If this person is working with an agent…why the heck did they call me and get me to do all this work?

I love to help people find a great home suited just for them…

I try to ask the right questions to help source out and show relevant homes. I like to think that I work really hard to provide the best possible service. As a seasoned real estate investor I always went to the source…..the selling agent. I didn’t jerk anyone around. I gave the agent the opportunity to double end the transaction and I was able to negotiate better with the owner. By having the same agent that is representing the seller communicate our intent and goals for the  purchase I created a clearer path of communication by eliminating an agent. Also the agent is more motivated to get the deal done for monetary reasons.

I wouldn’t recommend this type of situation for everyone. As a seasoned investor I was well aware of the position I put myself in every time I went down this path. This is why the average home buyer should get a real estate agent to represent them and sign a Buyer’s Representation Agreement to protect them from entering into less then ideal circumstances. In my case, you are hiring someone with almost 10 years of real estate investing and renovation experience backed up with a license to buy and sell real estate. I have seen my share of crooked deals and I can see them coming from a mile away.

Here is the frustrating part for myself as an agent…

All potential buyers that keep their agents secret are stealing my valuable time and money. As a real estate agent our income is derived from transactions. There is so much of our daily activity that we don’t get paid for. More importantly when someone has the secret agent syndrome they are taking me away from helping my existing clients and not allowing the agent they hired to do their job.

Please….if you are working with an agent I would ask that you contact them to send you information and show you houses that you are interested in. If you really trust that agent to work with you then sign a Buyer’s Representation Agreement to give you the best protection. If you don’t have an agent and would like someone with years of buying experience I would be more then happy to assist you in your search.

Feel free to share your opinion about this or any other real estate based issues that frustrate you. I look forward to your comments.


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