Ah, it’s all the same, really

Israel real estate commissions explained. Buyers pay 2% over there, but then there’s an extra 16% VAT imposed. Here in Greenwich, it’s a 5% commission, usually (and no VAT)  split 2.5% each to the selling and buyer’s brokers  but regardless, you as the buyer are ultimately paying the full freight – it’s figured into the price, no?

But at least, as of ten years ago or so, the law has changed so that buyer’s agents are no longer legally sub-agents of the seller’s broker, which means we can represent you, dig up all the dirt we can on the seller’s circumstances: bankruptcy, divorce, pending indictments, whatever, and pass them on to you. It makes being a buyer’s agent so much more fun!

8 Comments

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8 responses to “Ah, it’s all the same, really

  1. Anonymous

    Dude –
    You little weasel. You have finally admitted what I have been saying all along. The buyer is the ONLY ONE putting up any money. So this claim that the seller pays the brokerage commission is one big fraud. DUH!! I can’t believe people actually bought that crap.

    And if my marketing materials contained half the BS stuff you dirt selling “professionals” publish – days on market, selling price vs. ask price, and on and on, I would have been up the river long ago. You publish pure crap.
    Start ONLY representing a buyer or a seller, give them good advice, and be a trusted advisor. You will make more money, and feel better about what you do.
    So what is wrong with that?
    Your Pal,
    Walt

  2. Anonymous

    Dude –
    WTF??? Every time I post, there is a new way to do it now. And now I am getting advertisements.
    What the heck is going on? I am an old man, for Pete’s Sake. When I get confused, I start hitting every button on my keyboard. I barely know how to type, I have this frigiing think asking me questions, and it’s FREAKING ME OUT!!
    Your Pal,
    Walt

  3. Burning Madolf

    Buyer paying full freight? Sorry, the commission is coming out of both sides: buyer paying up and seller not seeing 5% plus closing costs.
    As for the digging up on the seller, I remember selling my house in a divorce and one of the first bids was a huge low ball from a neighbor I didn’t know but they knew my circumstances. I told my broker if they made another low ball offer they were really going to need my house because I was going to burn theirs down. Never heard from them again and still sold up 25%.

  4. Anonymous

    So what did buyers’ agents do before the law changed? Pretend to represent the sole interests of their buyer-clients or openly admit that they were legally sub-agents of the seller’s broker, in which case, what the hell good were they to the buyers? Why should buyers have trusted them given that legal conflict of interest? How did you explain your relationship to your buyer-clients, CF, back in the bad old days when you were legally a sub-agent of the seller before the law changed?

  5. Anonymous

    “But at least, as of ten years ago or so, the law has changed so that buyer’s agents are no longer legally sub-agents of the seller’s broker, which means we can represent you, dig up all the dirt we can on the seller’s circumstances: bankruptcy, divorce, pending indictments, whatever, and pass them on to you. ”

    IMHO, someone who calls himself a “buyers broker” who is a sub-agent of the seller’s broker and is legally forbidden to provide his client with all discoverable information about the seller is fraud. Under that legal setup, how can there not be a clear conflict of his interest between buyer and seller?

  6. rant for a monday morning

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/25/nyregion/to-reach-simple-life-at-camp-lining-up-for-private-jets.html?_r=1&hp

    kids are taking private planes to summer camp!!!!! dear god, what is the matter with this world? the most fun I ever ever ever had as a kid was taking the long bus ride to maine. got a chance to gab with old and new friends. this article is so hard to read, so hard to understand, and breaks my heart that parents find this reasonable in order to manage THEIR busy lives. they have no idea what their kids are missing. why bother even sending them to camp. keep them home in conencticut in central air condititiong.

  7. Andy

    For those new to a town, a real estate agent provides a great service.

    For those who know the town and can use the internet, buyers agents get paid an insane amount of money for provding no service whatsoever– especially with Greenwich priced homes. I wonder if Zillow or another service will ever allow me, as a buyer, to share in the 2.5% buyers-side of the commission.

  8. Anonymous

    if you’re a savvy buyer who can handle all of the paperwork and processing (or if you have a great attorney to do bulk of that for you) and you clearly have the best offer for a home, what’s to prevent that buyer from asking the selling agent for a % of the listing fee? is that legal, or not? why should the seller care? they’re getting the best price regardless.