Profile picture for barbhb7

Changing real estate buyer's agent

I no longer want to work with the buyer's agent who showed me some properties, but I am still interested in a property she showed me. Can I get another agent to buy that property, or must I use the agent who first showed it ?
  • March 01 2014 - Salem
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Answers (7)

Best Answer

There is another consideration, the concept of "proximate cause". Not to get all lawlerly on you, the concept is that whichever Realtor is the one who was the reason you bought a particular home is entitled to the stated commission as the buyer's agent. So changing buyer's agents to buy a home that Realtor A first showed you probably gives Realtor A the right to have the commission for the sale as if they were your agent all the way through. Stated another way, were I Realtor A and I learned you bought a home I had showed you, using Realtor B, I would request the stated commission from the listing Realtor. Were it not forthcoming I would file a grievance with the local Realtor's Association and most likely a hearing would be held to determine which Realtor was the "proximate cause" of you buying that house. In almost all of these grievances, the Realtor who first showed you the home wins. Again injecting myself, were I Realtor A I might be willing to proceed without filing a grievance if Realtor B were to pay me a "referral fee", usually about 25% of the gross comission. That might depend on how much time I had spent with you.
  • March 02 2014
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Ms. Whitton is correct about the terms.  Thanks!
  • March 02 2014
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Profile picture for Dewey Whitton
Mr. Sutton may have meant "Procuring Cause" v.s. "proximate cause." One being more specific to real estate than the other. Here is a link to an article that will be helpful. http://reny.net/Procuring-Cause.html
  • March 02 2014
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The first question the new agent should ask during the initial interview is "Have you been working with another agent?".   When you answer yes you should follow up with what you just told us.   When it's not a good fit there are ethical ways for the new agent to handle this.

If the appropriate steps in this situation are not taken then the New REALTOR could end up with a "Commisionectomy" when all is said and done.
  • March 02 2014
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I would discuss this with my new agent, and let them worry about it!
  • March 02 2014
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I'd also suggest telling your new agent about the situation so they are aware of any sensitivities that could arise. Personally I appreciate you being so thoughtful and concerned in doing the right thing as to post a question about this topic!
  • March 02 2014
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Profile picture for Dewey Whitton
Barbhb7,
Unless you have a signed contract with the buyers agent you are free to choose who you want to represent you.  A frank discussion with the agent you no longer wish to work with is a fair request.  They could learn from the situation and become a more informed agent thanks to your feedback.  You appreciate their time but let them know it's not a good fit for you and why.
  • March 01 2014
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