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Discussion Starter #1
So my wife and I are finally ready to buy our first house - YAY!

2 ques to bounce off everyone:

a) Is there a website more updated than MLS.com? I find MLS updated very rarely - there must be something that is much more accurate!

and

b) we have started using an agent to look for what matches our search criteria, however, I always thought that U have to sign something that outlines that a particular agent will look for you or is that just when you are selling your home?
We asked this particular agent if we need to sign anything and she said that is not necessary as she trusts that we will only use her, but I want to know that she is going to work her tail off to find us something!


thanks for your input!
 

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No there is no website better than mls.ca. The reason for this is if you want the new and fresh deals you have to use an agent.

The contract you are referring to is called the buyer's agency agreement. This is a new thing the agents are trying to get people to sign so that they have to buy through that agent.

What you need to know about real estate agents is that they work for the seller. They are not your friend and they do not represent you. They will make thousands of $ IF YOU BUY. If you shop they lose. They do not negotiate on your behalf they negotiate on the seller's behalf.

Please really do your homework before you buy a house. It is the biggest investment most of us will ever make. Don't go see three houses and then pick one.
 

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When a person is selling a home and decides to list the home on MLS, the seller contracts with a real estate agent. This listing agent works for the seller. When the home is sold, the listing agent gets a commission. If the listing agent both lists the home and sells the home then he/she gets the entire commission.

If the purchaser has his/her own agent that shows the purchaser the home, then the seller's agent receives 1/2 the commission and the buyer's agent receives 1/2. It is therefore advisable for the purchaser to have his/her own agent working for and negotiating on his/her behalf.

I hope this helps.
 

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Harper,

Your agent is the only one to have faster access than the MLS website. Real Estate Agents have a special website they can log in to for the most up to date info. Be sure your agent knows all of your needs/wants and they will be sure to let you know when something comes up. Properties don't always hit the MLS website before being sold.

If your agent doesn't want a contract signed that is better for you. If this agent turns out not to be helpful you can go and look for one that will be without being sued.
 

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We asked this particular agent if we need to sign anything and she said that is not necessary as she trusts that we will only use her, but I want to know that she is going to work her tail off to find us something!

That is great. If she doesn't work her tail off then just drop her and find another. If you had of signed the agreement, only then could she feel comfortable putting her feet up, knowing you would be locked in.

Never sign a buyers agreement. Most agents will not like this because you can drop them anytime and all their past work they have done for you, will be for nothing. But hey, tell me a business where that is not the case. They know it doesn't cost a buyer anything to use them, so most people will allow them to consumate the deal in the end, so they will usually not walk away. If they do, they were probably too busy to work for you anyways.

good luck.
 

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If the purchaser has his/her own agent that shows the purchaser the home, then the seller's agent receives 1/2 the commission and the buyer's agent receives 1/2. It is therefore advisable for the purchaser to have his/her own agent working for and negotiating on his/her behalf.

I hope this helps.
Just a question, if the commission is based on the sold price of the house, and the two agents split it, how is it in the buyer's agent's interest to negotiate down the price? Unless, you're saying that the 2nd agent will be motivated to closing the sale quicker.
 

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Just a question, if the commission is based on the sold price of the house, and the two agents split it, how is it in the buyer's agent's interest to negotiate down the price? Unless, you're saying that the 2nd agent will be motivated to closing the sale quicker.
That is something you should be aware of! Ultimately the buying agent wants to make as much commission as possible, but time is money so if they could be making more sales they may just want to close quicker


Something I've noticed is you can negotiate their commission. I've heard of co workers buying a house with the agent representing both sides, and the agent agrees to take a cut in a commission

I suppose if you find a house without an agent, you could ask the selling agent to take a 50% cut in commission as well, and maybe they would agree on a 25% cut
 

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Hello everyone, I'm new to the forum. My name is Kirby Chan and I work for Forest Hill Real Estate. Just thought I could answer a few questions.

To High Octane: Not all buying agents want to make as much commission as possible. When a buyer gets screwed like that, word gets around. It really isn't worth the extra couple of bucks in my opinion. Also I wouldn't recommend using the listing agent as the buying agent because the listing agent will be 100% representing the seller. Other than price, you just don't want to buy a house with problems.

To BGC_FAN: It really doesn't matter what the incentives are. A buying agent ultimately has to listen to the client. When the client wants a certain price, the agent has to negotiate based on that.

To Harper77: I understand what you mean about www.realtor.ca
The market is so active that most of the time the listings on the site are already sold and new listings take over a day to be posted. I would recommend that you ask an agent to setup a new listing alert for you. It's more detailed than www.realtor.ca and faster. ***
 

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Both houses we have purchased without an agent; we have just used mls.ca and done looking ourselves. On each occasion we got the selling agent to cut the commission by 50% and reduce the house price by that amount after we first negotiated the purchase price; no was the answer at first, but they both came around. ;)

When we moved, we did use an agent to sell our house but did not use them to buy the new one.

Get a real house inspector / engineer to do a house eval before buying and get one independently, not one recommended by the real estate agent; IMO no real estate agent (acting as buyer or seller) is likely to tell you if there is an issue with the house; they may not know and likely would not know.

Regardless, a real estate agents business is making their money buying and selling houses for people. To me that is a bias just like a bank paid investment agent has one.
 

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A point not yet raised is what happens when you view a property 'on your own'. If you do a private showing the listing agent will show it ... and he will then be elegible for both the listing and buyers part of the commission ... and possibly be open to negotiation on the seller's part.

If you see the ppty at an Open House, chances are it is not the listing agent sitting there. If you make an offer this agent will claim to be representing you WHETHER YOU WANT HIM OR NOT. And this agent will claim the buyer's portion of the commission, and will insist that his name be written into the offer.

I disagree with the contention: "A buying agent ultimately has to listen to the client" . I have first hand experience with their refusal to write the offer I wanted. You have to be prepared to either cross out what they have written when they eventually let you near the form, or else let them do their thing and then say, thank you I will have my lawyer review this before I sign.
 

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"Get a real house inspector / engineer to do a house eval before buying and get one independently, not one recommended by the real estate agent"

A very important point. When real estate agents refer a house inspector, the house inspector knows that the real estate agent really, really would like the house to be OK and the deal to go through. If the inspector wants more referrals they will do what they can to achieve this.

As ssimps says: Don't make this mistake. Get your own.
 

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A point not yet raised is what happens when you view a property 'on your own'. If you do a private showing the listing agent will show it ... and he will then be elegible for both the listing and buyers part of the commission ... and possibly be open to negotiation on the seller's part.
This is what I was getting at; it can be used to the house buyers advantage too. You view the house yourself and do not use an agent to purchase. Negotiate the buying price, and then at the end say 'and BTW, I want another 2 - 2.5% off the agree price since there is no buyer agent getting 2 - 2.5% commission'. Both times we did this they seller agent ended up agreeing to our request to make the sale and lowering the price a further 2-2.5%.

As a buyer, you need a lawyer and an independent house inspector; nothing more IMO.

As a seller of a house, I think RE agents have more use / function. ;)
 

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To High Octane: Not all buying agents want to make as much commission as possible. When a buyer gets screwed like that, word gets around. It really isn't worth the extra couple of bucks in my opinion. Also I wouldn't recommend using the listing agent as the buying agent because the listing agent will be 100% representing the seller. Other than price, you just don't want to buy a house with problems.
I don't see a problem with using the same agent for both. Often the buying agent is also selling many houses... so do you get a 2nd buying agent to look at those houses, or do you negotiate a deal on the commission

I use buying agents because when I move it's often to a brand new area and I have 1 week to find a house. A buying agent provides local knowledge, schedules the visits, and drives me around, and in some cases translates as well

If I knew the area, I wouldn't even use a buying agent. What does the buying agent do to represent me during the offer??? I decide the offer price not them

Also how does the buyer decide they got screwed by their buying agent after they accepted the counter offer themselves? They spread around that the agent pushed them into paying too much? Anyone who gets screwed by a buying agent has only themselves to blame I think
 

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We have negotiated a small portion of the commission back from agents when selling houses. I don't think this is uncommon. If the deal is going to die because the purchaser and vendor are only a few thousand apart, it makes sense for the agents to try and save the deal.
 

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I use buying agents because when I move it's often to a brand new area and I have 1 week to find a house. A buying agent provides local knowledge, schedules the visits, and drives me around, and in some cases translates as well

If I knew the area, I wouldn't even use a buying agent. What does the buying agent do to represent me during the offer??? I decide the offer price not them
This is a good point and maybe the only case where using a buying agent makes sense, unless they are also the sellers agent and you can consider that you can not count on their advice anyhow.Regardless, you should expect a reduction in price based on them giving up commission at minimum since they would be getting both sides of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
When are new listings released to all agents?
For some reason I keep thinking its every Thurs but I might be wrong on that.

We are looking in both Burlington and Brampton - the agent we are using says "ya no prob I have access to Brampton", however so far this wk all we have rec'd from her is her office listings - nothing from any other agency and nothing from Brampton. I think maybe she wants to get us to go with only listings from her office, thus the full commission.

I am thinking of maybe having 2 agents on the go or dropping this one totally.
 

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The MLS (not realtor.ca) is updated as listings come in on a daily basis.

There is no excuse for this. Many agents (not the ones I deal with) don't want to give you a lot of information thinking that this will confuse you with choice. They also don't want to show you many houses.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
The MLS (not realtor.ca) is updated as listings come in on a daily basis.

There is no excuse for this. Many agents (not the ones I deal with) don't want to give you a lot of information thinking that this will confuse you with choice. They also don't want to show you many houses.
Do you have any agent(s) that look after the Burlington and/or the Brampton area that you could refer me to? Private msg them to me -
thanks!
 

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If your not sure about your current agent, drive around your respective area and look at some of the signs and get an idea of which agent(s) specialize in that area. You'll be able to find someone local that better represents you then someone who might be from a completely different part of town.

Since they know the area they might also better accommodate your needs and the type of house you are looking for.

MLS is updated daily, your agent should have you subscribed to a constant feed of listings that match your criteria as listings come on the market. Sometimes there is very little activity in niche areas.
 
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