HOW TO HIRE ME
You can be a REALTOR'S customer or client.
DURING OUR CONSULTATION WE WILL REVIEW A FORM DEFINING THESE RELATIONSHIPS AND YOU WILL BE ASKED TO CHOOSE WHICH RELATIONSHIP STATUS YOU PREFER.
The Alabama Real Estate Commission requires that we review this form during our first meeting.
Signing this form does not enter you into any agreement with a REALTOR; it's simply a disclosure that states the types of relationships have been explained to you.
VIEW THE FORM
"How do I hire you, and how do you get paid?"
Just like when a seller hires a REALTOR to put their sign in the yard and represent them as their seller's agent to negotiate for them and guide them through the selling process, a buyer hires a REALTOR to represent them throughout their home search, negotiation, and purchase.
A seller hires a REALTOR by signing a Listing Agreement. The agent on the Listing Agreement gets to put their sign in the yard and it is the only agent allowed to represent the seller for the period of time agreed to between the agent and the client. This agreement allows the REALTOR to represent the seller through the marketing, negotiations, and closing of the property.
A buyer hires a REALTOR by signing a Buyer Agency Agreement. The agent on the Buyer Agency Agreement is the only agent allowed to represent the buyer for the period of time agreed to between the agent and the client. This agreement allowes the REALTOR to represent the buyer on all properties whether they are listed with an agent, are for sale by owner, or are currently under construction and are for sale by a builder.
*Neither of these methods of hiring an agent requires paying money to the agent up front.
Once a seller has hired me by signing a Listing Agreement, we then discuss particular in-depth details such as how to best prepare the property for market.
THE (BORING) FINE PRINT
How REALTORS get paid is confusing.
Let me try and clear it up.
The service fee that compensates the listing and selling brokers and their agents for their efforts to market and sell a property is included in the final sales price of all homes listed in the MLS - Multiple Listing Service.
While there may be some rare exceptions the good news is that a buyer will almost never pay additional money to cover their REALTOR®’s service fee.
THE “SERVICE FEE” IS SOMETIMES CALLED A “BROKERAGE FEE”. ALTHOUGH IT IS SOMETIMES CALLED A “COMMISSION”THIS CAN BE MISLEADING BECAUSE IT IS PAID DIRECTLY TO THE AGENT’S BROKER - NOT THE AGENT.
Agents work under a managing broker, even if they also have a broker’s license. The broker isn’t their “boss” in the traditional sense of the word because REALTORS® are self-employed; however, brokers do distribute a portion of the service fee to the agent after a sale. Agents are responsible for covering all expenses related to running their business like advertising, supplies, and gas.
Hopefully this helps clear up a commonly misunderstood aspect of working with a REALTOR®.
Still have questions? I’d love to meet with you!
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