Did you know a fiduciary relationship is forever?

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Did you know a fiduciary relationship is forever? When working for a Seller or Buyer as a "Single Agent" you are creating a fiduciary relationship.

Brief definition from Wikipedia: for full definition click

A fiduciary duty is the highest standard of care imposed at either equity or law. A fiduciary is expected to be extremely loyal to the person they owe the duty (the "principal"): they must not put their personal interests before the duty, and must not profit from their position as a fiduciary, unless the principal consents. The fiduciary relationship is highlighted by good faith, loyalty and trust.

Once this relationship is established it does not go away just because your listing has expired or your Buyer is no longer working with you. You are still bound by this relationship. This means that whatever your client has told you in confidence must remain confidential until your client has given you permission to remove the confidentiality. And you have the duty of full disclosure to your principal. This is where in my opinion the problem comes in with having an Agency relationship in Real Estate.

Example: Suppose you have a listing as a single Agent and the Seller, your principal, has told you that she has been having financial difficulties. She is a few months behind on her mortgage payments and needs to sell quickly to avoid foreclosure. And she has asked you not to disclose this information to anyone. Ok, no problem, so far. A few months go by and your listing agreement expires and the Seller decides to list with another Company. About a month later you are searching for homes on the MLS to show the new Buyer that you are working with. This Buyer has signed a "Buyer's Broker Agreement" agreeing that you will work for him as a single Agent. The Buyer is now your Principal. Lo and behold the best match for your Buyer is the property that you had listed that is now with another Company. You take the Buyer to see it and he falls in love with the property. You rush back to your office and start writing a purchase offer and your Buyer looks at you and says "It looks like this property has been on the market for several months. Do you know why the Seller is selling?"

Here's your dilemma. You can't mention the pre-foreclosure or you are breaking your fiduciary relationship with the Seller and you can't not tell the Buyer because you owe him full disclosure.

This is a very simple and common example. It doesn't even take into account dual Agency or the fact that an Agency relationship starts with your Broker and filters down to all the Agents under that license. So what do you do?

The facts Jack. Nothing but the facts!

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Got a call from a homeowner a few days ago. Seems he had received one of my solicitation letters that I send out daily to all expired and withdrawn listings in my market area. He was wondering why he got a letter since he had just listed his house on the market a few weeks ago. Well I got his address and phone number and told him I would look it up in the MLS and call him right back. When I checked the MLS he was currently active but had been withdrawn for one day and re-entered by the same office by a different Realtor. I called him back and gave him this information and had a nice chat with him. Very pleasant and knowledgeable young man. Wished him luck with the selling of his house and told him to feel free to call me if he ever had any questions or needed any help.

Well lo and behold he called me two days later and asked if I could come by and see him because he was thinking about changing Realtors. Sounded good to me so I made an appointment and went to see him the next day. He had a great  house! I had a look around and sat down with him and his wife to go over market conditions and give him my opinion of what his house was worth and what it would take to get it sold. He was currently listed at $215,000 with a 4% commission. My suggestion was $195,000 with a 6% commission. While talking with them I discovered a few things 1. They had never seen a Market Analysis 2. They had never sold a house before 3. The wife had been transferred and they wanted a quick sale 4. They had never heard from their Realtor since being placed on the market. I left them with all the information I had prepared for them and told them to keep me in mind if things didn’t work out with their current Realtor.

Called me the next day to let me know they had fired their Realtor and wanted me to place their home on the market with me. They said they slept great the night I left knowing there was hope and that they now had the information they needed to make a good decision. I now have a beautiful new listing with great Sellers. “Range Priced” at “Market Value” ($189,000 to $209,000) and a 6% commission so we can offer a good Co-broke. All these Sellers ever wanted from their Realtor were the facts. I have now connected them with a Realtor found through ActiveRain to help them purchase in Arkansas, for a referral fee of course. The Sellers are confident about their relocation. I am happy with my new listing that’s priced right and had two showings as soon as it hit the market. And their previous Realtor…………….?

The facts Jack. Nothing but the facts.

Real Estate. I love it!

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Man, I’m tired today. It’s been a long week. I’ve been very busy and I haven’t been sleeping very well. I have one of those bad backs and rarely sleep for more than an hour at a time. This has been going on for years. I even had a Seller tell me I didn’t sound like my normal chipper self today. It was true, but I didn’t like hearing it. Real Estate is all about having an upbeat and positive attitude. On the rare occasions when I’m not 100%, I feel my Sellers suffer for it. So what do you do? I’m a one man office, so it’s not like I can just take a day off. I must answer the phone. If I don’t my Sellers may miss a showing on their property and I can’t let that happen. They are depending on me and I won’t let them down.

Keeping my business small was a decision I made years ago. “The Lovely Wife” and I enjoy our time together and we did not want to get locked into a position of having to run an office and having to get up and go to work everyday. Also, I have a little bit of a control issue and have a problem with delegating. The most important reason for staying small is, I’m a salesperson. It’s what I like to do. It’s what I’m good at. I don’t enjoy managing people and running a business, even though I am a business. Does that make any sense?

I think the point is, that in order to be a success you must find the one thing you enjoy doing and try to do it better than anyone else. Some Realtors like going solo, some like being a part of a team, some want to manage, some want to open up large offices. I don’t think there is a right way or a wrong way, but I do think it is extremely important to find the way that works for you and makes you happy. Never try to work a certain way because you think that’s what is expected of you. Be true to yourself. Find your strong points and concentrate on them. Set your own goals and compete with yourself.

Also, have a plan. You must know where you are going in order to get there. Reflect on it. Get you priorities in order. And whatever you do, don’t do it for the money. If you do a good job and stay focused the money will come all by itself.

I hope you didn’t find this post too boring. But hey, it’s my Blog and it’s what I felt like writing today. Tomorrow is a new day and I m going to wake up refreshed and ready to do my best. Man, I’m tired. Man, my back hurts. Man, I am so blessed. Real Estate. I love it!

Wah! wah!…..and then complain about it! Today I want to talk briefly about co-brokes and the “ole’ 50/50 rule”. In my area it is quite common for short sale listings to have verbiage in the MLS remarks stating that what ever commission is received will be split 50/50 with the selling agent. Then of course they offer a ridiculously high co-broke so the uneducated Buyers agent believes he will get that x% co-broke when most of us know the short sale lender will rarely allow more than y%.

I don’t handle my listings that way. I offer z% percent as a co-broke and I guarantee it. No matter how much the lender allows me to get paid I honor the co-broker offer. I do this because I completely disagree with changing co-brokes after the Buyers agent has already shown and negotiated a deal on my listing. In my opinion it’s playing dirty pool.

BUT….I’m also not an idiot. I offer a co-broke that is in line with my market conditions but one that still leaves me a little bit of room for play. This means that if the lender allows y% I end up making more money than the selling agent. If the lender reduces the commission I make less than the selling agent. It all works out in the end and I feel it’s a fair way of doing business. There are no surprises for the selling agent. They get what’s offered in the MLS with no exceptions.

Today I had a selling agent upset at me because they saw I was making more than them on the HUD statement. He wanted to know why? I explained my company policy to him but he just didn’t get it and started going off about the 50/50 rule. Finally I just had to tell him that what I get paid is really none of his business. He hung up on me.

So I sent him this email:

Dear agent,

I want to clarify the co-broke on my short sale listings. It is always z% Even if the bank comes back and reduces the commission to h% or j% I still l pay z% to the selling agent. Your commission is guaranteed.

In fact I am the only broker that I know of in this area that does not reduce the co-broke when the lender reduces the commission on a short sale. It was z% when you showed the property and it’s still z%.

My commission agreement is between me and my seller. I’m sure if I were getting less than you there would be no issue. On this particular short sale the lender allowed me to get y% so I made out better. That is not always the case.

There is no such thing as 50/50 rule. That is a figment of your imagination.

Thank you for your hard work with getting this transaction closed. I hope we can do more in the future. End of email.

Is this really that difficult to understand? What say you?

Do you need a new Broker?

Want to find out more? www.TTRealtyNet.com

 

The BIO for Bryant Tutas

Copyright © 2010 http://www.brokerbryant.com/ | All Rights Reserved

 

Are your customers and clients being neglected?

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Following up on one of my deals today scheduled to close this coming Friday. Finally reached the Buyer's Realtor after leaving several messages only to hear how hectic her week has been with the kids getting ready for school blah, blah, blah. Anyway she suggested that I follow up with the Mortgage Broker and Title Company to make sure we are still on track for Friday as she doesn't have the time to deal with this this week. OK, correct me if I'm wrong but sometimes I wonder why I am even paying the buyers' Realtors. This happens ALL the time. Fortunately for them I prefer to cut them out of the deal as soon as possible anyway so I can deal directly with the Mortgage Broker. But what about the Realtors that don't want to deal with the other side of the transaction? Are these Buyers having the same difficulty with their Realtor as I am? I do realize that there are part time Realtors in this business that have conflicting obligations, like another job, but please for the Buyer's sake dedicate some time during the day where you are able to follow up and take care of your Real Estate business.

Buying or selling a house is a BIG deal for the consumer. As Realtors we must be in a position to see them through this experience and give them 100% of our attention in getting their deal closed. If you can't do this full time then you need to partner up with another Realtor that can handle your business when you are not able. We owe the consumer no less than this. Are your customers and clients being neglected?

I’m not racist but…………………

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Do these words make you cringe? Do you just want to leave before they go any further? The best way to tell a racist is when they say “I’m not a racist but……”.

Meeting with potential customers on a regular basis it doesn’t surprise me when I hear this but it does surprise me how often I hear it and who’s saying it. As Realtors we cannot go there! We must nip this conversation in the bud before it goes any further. There is a little law called the Fair Housing Act that we must abide by. How do we do this? How do we continue to work with this person? Do we just ignore it and move forward? Do we lay the law down?

I must admit that this always places me in an awkward position. I usually move forward at the speed of light then ignore it but I can never seem to forget it. It changes my relationship with that person. My dream is that someday we will learn to appreciate people for who they are not despise them for the color of their skin. I live in the great State of Florida and one of the best things about Florida is that it’s very multicultural. I wish all people would see it that way.

I’m not racist but…………..I do have a vision.

Short Sales got you down?

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

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Say hello to the confident feeling of a great close and a happy client.

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www.ShortSaleSuperStars.com

Copyright © 2010 REGrow, LLC | All Rights Reserved

Short Sale Agent Training

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

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Wendy Rulnick and Bryant Tutas
www.ShortSaleSuperStars.com

Copyright © 2010 REGrow, LLC | All Rights Reserved

 

 

Have you gone beyond the call of duty lately?

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Bought a new stove today. Unfortunately it won't be coming to my house but will be delivered to the house I closed on last week. The Sellers, my customers, were supposed to put a new stove in the house but decided to cut corners and put in a refurbished stove instead. Looks great. Works great. But it's not new. The Buyers nor their Realtor did a walk through prior to closing and I didn't notice it when I was in the house. The Sellers are going through a nasty divorce and had already moved and went their separate ways.

So what are you going to do? The Buyers are expecting a new stove when they arrive next week. I figure my Sellers have enough on their plate and I know that calling them on this is just going to create more tension between them. So I bought a new stove. Haven't seen it but hear it is really nice. Real shiny. Think I'll place a few business card magnets on the front and write the Buyers a little letter letting them know how I solved this problem for them. Maybe I'll get some business from it in the future. Maybe they will invite me over to dinner since my lovely wife doesn't cook. Have you gone beyond the call of duty lately?

Make your listing presentation a listening presentation

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

In my market Poinciana, Fl I have been listing and selling homes for 12 years. When I first started out here there were 6,000 people and only one local Real Estate Company. I didn’t consider myself a company back then since I worked out of my house and was a one man show. Still am. Over the years I have been able to establish myself as the top listing agent in this community. By this I mean I have the highest number of sold listings (single family homes) in any given year. During the last 4 to 5 years Poinciana has exploded to over 65,000 people and still growing. There are now hundreds of Realtors from all over Central Florida listing and selling houses out here. As of this morning there are 1,434 houses on the market in the MLS. And still I am at the top. By the way if you check up on me in the MLS don’t look under actives look under pendings and solds. That’s where you will find me. I have found that one of the reasons for my success is a rock solid knowledge of the market in my area and a very strong listing presentation.

What makes for a strong listing presentation? Well what I have learned is the best presentation is when the Sellers are doing all the talking. Ask the right questions, sit back and listen. Sellers don’t care about Power Point Presentations, 25 Marketing Strategies for a Successful Sale, Broker Open’s, how many designations you have, how large your company is or a myriad of other things we say to potential Sellers to show how good we are. Remember it’s all about them not about us. The Sellers I meet with on a whole want to talk. They want to show you their house and tell you their reasons for selling. They want to blow off steam from the bad experiences they have had with past Realtors. They want someone that will listen to them and respond accordingly. No scripts, no ABC sales techniques and no print out of all your awards.

What they want is an honest and forthright opinion of what their house is worth and what it will take to sell it. And most importantly they must know that you genuinely care about them and their needs. And believe me this can not be faked. It must be a sincere caring. Bottom line people want to work with people they like and trust. So next time make your listing presentation a listening presentation.

About us

I am a licensed real estate Broker in the state of Florida. My opinions on real estate have been formed from my experiences and 15 years of working in the business. My opinions are in line with Florida Real Estate laws and the REALTOR(R) Code of Ethics. Your State’s laws may differ. So do your own homework before implementing any of my business practices into your business.