Profile picture for coffeeshop

My agent (buyer) is asking for additional commission on close

Hi, I had an offer accepted and I am signing escrow next week. I got the escrow statement summary and had 0.5% incremental commission for my broker (buyer). Tonight he explained that the listings on this property pays only 2.5%, and that he usually gets 3.5%, that the statement should actually have 1% additional instead of 0.5%. 

This agent is highly regarded with 30 years experience in the market. He has been very helpful as we have been looking at properties for months. He has actually recommended me making a lower offer on this property than I was planning to, saving me $25k. 

So he told me I don't have to pay additional commission, it could be 0%, 0.5% or 1%, but that he would normally get 3.5%. We don't have an agreement on minimum commission and I never thought I would have to pay it. It just hurts me that he is telling me this a couple days before I close escrow. 

I just checked the 3 other listings we had considered and they all had CSO 2.5. So it seems that 2.5% is very common commission.


Not sure what to do. Appreciate advice. 

Thanks
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 03 2012 - US
We think we've answered this question for you!
  • Be a Good Neighbor. Be respectful and on-topic. No spam or self-promotion! See our Good Neighbor Policy.
 
 

Answers (30)

I have had the chance to see almost every underhanded, sneaky, dishonest act in my 18 years of Real Estate.  This one is new.  It sounds like they did a very good job and had they just left it at that I am sure they would have helped you in the future, and your friends.  Sounds like that 1/2% cost the agent a lot of money
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
March 31 2013
I would sue that agent... in all fairness he should have told you of the fees involved
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
March 27 2013
That sounds like a waiter that comes running after you because they were disappointed in how much you tipped them.

Dumb. Dumb. Dumb.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
Profile picture for coffeeshop
Hi All, I don't have a way to reply to each of your comments so I will reply here.

First, thanks for all the advice. One thing I need to clarify is that the same day I saw the escrow statement, the agent did go over it line by line and then explain why he asked to add the commission. He said he worked a lot harder than usual, many months, nights, weekends, etc...

I actually went to escrow already and didn't pay the additional commission. Agent called after and said he was surprised and that it was the first time one of his clientes decided to not pay additional commission, that many times client add it voluntarily. I said I was planning to gift him in someway for all the great work advice, etc..But felt that adding that on the day before escrow was a bad move. We could have discussed it even a week ago and would be a different story. I would actually have paid it gladly. He insists he think it was not improper, and his intention was not to underhandedly throw that at me. Etc...

Just a bad way to end what had been a great agent/buyer relationship. But I don't want to be on his bad side as I might still need some help in the next days/weeks, or in the future I might need him to answer a question or provide a document. 
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
If the commission is not in the agreement then you do not have to pay it. I would speak with the agents broker to let them know what they are trying to pull. The agent works under the brokers license and I am sure the broker would like this type of activity.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
What a slime ball... 30 years experience means 30 years of bad habits.. I hope you don't ever refer him to any of your friends. 
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
Profile picture for Dunes ..
Based on what has been said by the OP...

Honor this?...offer him something?...."depends if you are both just about the money"?...next time???

The way this was explained it was simply a sleezy move by the Agent imo and there is nothing to honor, shouldn't be a next time and the only offer that should be made is... gonna get the word out just what kind of BS this Agent tried to pull


The Agent didn't explain, mention or discuss they just added more Commission and when asked/confronted tossed out BS about what they are worth..
Saved the client money?..that's what every Agent tosses out is a major advantage of using an Agent so suggesting they should get a bonus for doing that seems odd to me...especially after the unprofessional behavior of the Agent

Is it ok to ask the Agents side..
YES and the OP said they did just that when discovering the Agent had added a higher commission amount than offered by the Seller/Listing Agent without saying anything to anyone..
The Agent said "he would normally get 3.5%" apparently suggesting they were doing the client a favor by only increasing their commission 0.5% to 3% when raising the amount without notification or discussion ...

Shouldn't "honor" anything here..in fact the best result would be this Agent was disciplined/penalized/removed from the Profession somehow for such outrageous unprofessional behavior....
It's an embarrassment to any REAL Professional as explained and Real Professionals should be outraged not suggesting consumers/clients "Honor" such a sleezy business practice imo

The consumer/client must be wrong, not telling the whole story,  greedy/about the money, not willing to "Honor"...yeah that's the ticket!


  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
It is all about contracts. If you do not have a contract for any other commission then he cannot ask for that and it is a bit unfortunate that he did not simply discuss this with you upfront, it sounds like you would have been open for negotiations.
Nevertheless it is not correct to ask in the first place.
Ultimately it is up to you to fight or honor this, maybe the solution is in the middle, he saved you considerate amounts of money, offer him something and ask him that next time, if there is one, you want to know upfront...
It really depends if you are both just about the money or you feel his services might have been worth it. Is it ok to ask from his side? No.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
Profile picture for workabee
Tell your agent to stuff it. The answer to his guilt commission is no. Maybe the bonus to throw him is the line the industry loves---educate him that agents work for buyers for free.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
Profile picture for Dunes ..
From the OP's post the situation was/is

"We don't have an agreement on minimum commission and I never thought I would have to pay it"

And the way they learned the Agent was TAKING/EXPECTING/WANTED more WAS NOT BECAUSE THE AGENT TOLD THEM BUT BECAUSE

"I got the escrow statement summary and had 0.5% incremental commission for my broker (buyer)."

THEN the Agent responded when asked

"he usually gets 3.5%, that the statement should actually have 1% additional instead of 0.5%"
but
"he told me I don't have to pay additional commission"

If accurate it wasn't discussed or in any agreement (if there even was an agreement ..written), but an increased % was added without discussion or agreement to the "escrow statement summary" by the Agent

In other words the Agent never discussed this "I make"..gotta get at least yadda yadda until after being confronted/asked why there was a
0.5% incremental on the Escrow summery

THEN the talk about "Oh I make yadda yadda but ya don't have to but you should blah blah started..at least that's how I read it


The way it's explained so far..pretty downright intentionally deceptive imo
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
Curious, what did a re-read of your agreement tell you?
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
Good morning!!  If it is not in the agreement that you have to pay your Buyer's agent than you should not. He knew what the comission was from the sellers side when he showed the home. Typically in my area the comission is  6% that a seller pays to the listing agent, if a buyer's agent sells the house the comission is split 3% each. If it states in the listing  Buyer's comission is 2.5 % than that's what it is. He can't change arrangemnets after the fact.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012

It should have been spelled out in the agreement and explained to you before you signed the agreement. Sometimes commissions are less but an agent has a duty to show all listings. This should not have been brought up days before the closing. I am sorry you are having to go through this. It gives our Profession a bad name. If it was not explained to you when you were signing the agreement and not stated in the agreement, you should not have to pay that.

  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 05 2012
Wow, that guy should be fired immediately. But it's too late. Just another reason the real estate industry has a reputation just below the beloved tow truck driver.

As a buyer's agent, I can tell you from personal experience that there are plenty of times I get paid less than the average. In Chicago, it's 2.5%, but banks are often paying 3% these days. However, plenty of properties pay 2%, and then many listing agents (or their managing offices) deduct another b.s. few hundred dollar fee. I have never asked for this.

Here's why:

It's very rare that you will sign a buyer's agent agreement. There are markets where it is more common. However, in Chicago, it's not really the norm. The reason is that most properties sell through realtors who pay a commission. This commission varies, but in the end, the buyer's agent gets paid. By locking you into an agreement, many agents are scared that you will feel pressured to buy something, or worse, not sign and end up looking alone or with an agent who doesn't ask for an agreement.

A good buyer's agent, and they exist, will show you properties in all price ranges that fit your needs and never, ever, hold back a listing because the agent isn't paying the average commission.

Why? Because he/she has a conscience. And they want your referral. A good buyer's agent won't be in business long if he's neglecting to show certain 'under' commission properties or always making sure his clients buy at the top of their price range.

If your agent told you this before you made your offer, there is an argument that it makes sense, but to inform you near closing is egregious, to the point that it might be an ethics violation with the local Realtor board. Give 'em a call. And make sure you let the internet world know about your wonderful experience.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Profile picture for wetdawgs
As a consumer, the first thing I'd do would be to pull out my buyer's agent agreement that I signed with him to see if he had spelled out this expectation.   If I hadn't signed one, or if it is not in the agreement, I would not pay the extra.

In addition, I consider it highly unethical to sneak this charge in to the HUD statement.   In fact, I would feel so strongly about it I would both file a complaint with his broker as well as the local real estate board and write a review on Zillow describing this activity.   (I'd probably do these after closing on the house).    It's rather like the plumber deciding he's worth an extra and stealing the $100 on my dresser when he's been repairing the shower. 

You do not owe the agent another 0.5 to 1.0% of the purchase price of the house if you did not agree to it in writing up front.






  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
The commission structure is almost always spelled out in the representation agreement. If the agent is more money because the payout from the listing is below what you contractually agreed to with the agent, then you are responsible for the difference. If that's not the case, the agent has no legal bearing to request additional money from you.

Oh by the way, I get $100 every time I answer a question. Could you send me a check? I know we didn't discuss it before, but...well...that's what I get. (not really, but you get the point).

Unless your agent has it in writing, I'd have to be like Nancy Reagan and 'just say no'.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Profile picture for MiamiCondosandHomes
Always consult your buyers agreement first, if you feel the agent deserves this and it is not in the agreement, provide it, if you do not feel it is fair, decline.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Profile picture for Best Miami Beach
Look over your buyer agreement and go by that. Despite his credentials, it is unprofessional to ask more, after the fact.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Why don't you read the Buyer Agency Agreement that yo signed with your agent, if you do not find the item that makes reference to the minimum commission on your own, ask the agent to show it to you.  If it is not written on the buyer agency contract, she may be out of luck.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Your agent had to know what the coop fee was from the beginning and it was not professional to ask when you are about to go to settlement, that should of been in the buyer agency agreement, and I would not pay any additional money, I would not also send anyone his way, sounds a little unprofessional to me as well. You don't want any of your friends or family going through this.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
I must agree with Lori!! if the your agent wanted extra commission he should have had a buyer broker agreement with you.. I never expect my clients to pay me additional commission if I don't have it in writing.. it not fair to you and this is not professional on the agents part . I would not pay him an extra cent other than his due commission on the listing agreement.. I wish you the best and go forward with your closing.. he gets 2.5% nothing more,..
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Wow, I'm not even going to look at the other answers you have received.  My personal opinion is that if it's not in writing it doesn't get paid period.  It is very unprofessional in my opinion.  If you are a buyer and enter into a buyers broker's agreement the commission to be paid is negotiated prior to looking at your first home.  This is unacceptable and I would not pay one more cent than you had agreed upon in writing.  Good luck with your new home.  Don't let this rain on your parade, enjoy!  Lori Hobin
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012

if there is not buyer agent agreement spelling out that you will pay the difference in the commission then that agent has no legal right to a commission. that is unethical to spring this up to you at the last minute.in todays tuff market , he is lucky he is getting 2.5 . most sellers are not paying the traditional 6% commission which is usually split 50 /50.
do not pay it. he shoul have told you upfront.

  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Im sure this has made you uncomfortable and that is a shame. He  did say that you do not have to pay the extra commission--- I would choose NOT to pay it. I WOULD let him know that since he has been so helpful in your purchase and saved you the 25K in the price of the home that you will be more than happy to send him potential clients and that perhaps THIS will make up for the .05% commission he had requested. :-)
Congrats on the purchase and Happy CLOSING!
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Profile picture for Dunes ..
If the Agent was as Professional as you say they would have discussed this and made it clear/understandable at the Beginning of your relationship not at the end....
Doing business this way just isn't Professional or acceptable imo..period

Me...I'd say I didn't appreciate someone doing business this way and move on despite any feelings of IF they deserve more or not.
Unacceptable move/practice by the Agent imo
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
He told you that the choice is yours, and it is. If you feel his service merits a "bonus" then pay it; if not, don't pay. None of us were involved in the transaction, we gdon't know if he is deserving or not. I wouldn't be hurt by when he asked, I doubt there would have been a good time to ask for "extra" (which I believe this is).
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
If your agent did not want to accept the 2.5% commissions from the seller, he should not have helped you in the purchase of this home.  If you did not sign an agreement that stated you would comp him the missing commissions, you do not owe him anything more. 

Hope this helps,

Josh Barnett, Realtor
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Skuba,

Your agent knew what the commission offering was before he ever showed you the property. It is posted on every MLS listing for all brokers to see. In our market, 3% is very common, but some foreclosures only offer a 2.5% commission to the buyer's agent.  This to me is not an indication of a true professional. If there was not a buyer's agency agreement and he never mentioned this difference in commission to you before now, it sounds as if he is trying to pull a fast one just before closing. He knows that you are likely to agree to it, just becacuse you are very near to closing. You have a choice in this. You can either agree and pay it based on the fact that he was helpful in the negotiations and overall process, or simply tell the agent that you do not feel that this is not fair nor professional, since it is just being disclosed to you now. You could also call the title company and tell them to take it off your side of expenses or call the principal broker of the agent and discuss the matter with them. Either way, good luck!
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
Thanks for posting your question on Zillow.com!

Commission is by law negotiable.  You do not have to agree, the deal will still go through and I recommend not agreeing.  The agent should have had is "ps" & "qs" in line from the beginning vs. the last minute.  If he was so good, he would not be in this situation.

Stick to your guns.

Best of luck to you.
  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012

If you signed a buyer's agency agreement with your buyer's agent it should state what his/her minimum commission to work with him/her will be. It would say something to the effect that if compensation is provided by seller or the listing company that he/she will accept that compensation. However the agent would not be obligated to show properties to Buyer if the compensation offered is not acceptable. When offered compensation is less than REALTOR's minimum (there would be a blank filled in which the agent's/REALTOR's minimum commission), Buyer will pay the difference. Compensation is due and payable at closing.

So if you have signed a document placing you in a buyer's agency agreement with your agent see if this clause is included, or something similar to it, if so then you are obligated to pay the additional commission fee, but if not then you may contest it.

Just like everything done in a transaction it must be in writing and agreed upon by all parties involved in that transaction. In a Buyer's Agency Agreement you and the agent must agree to the terms in the agreement by signing off on them.The key, check your buyer's agency agreement becasue if it has that clause it doesn't matter what may seem to be the common commission you have to agreed to pay more.

  Flag content
Close
Report a Problem

Please enter a valid email address.

Close
Content flagged

We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

Close
We're Sorry
This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.
October 04 2012
 
Related Questions
When to buy a condo in Seattle?
Profile picture for morga3
Latest answer by morga3
1 hour 23 minutes ago | 9 answers
weight loss You can eat so
Are there any lender's in tn that work with veterans that have a credit score below 620?
Profile picture for Jassy Barker
Latest answer by Jassy Barker
3 hours ago | 1 answers
  • Asked by stephanie88rusty78
  • In Moving
  • 3 hours ago
Mortgage Rates
 
Be A Good Neighbor

Zillow Advice depends on each member to keep it a safe, fun, and positive place. If you see abuse, flag it. More on our Good Neighbor Policy.