Discount broker may be shortchanging home seller

DEAR BOB: I don’t expect you to print this letter because Iam a nontraditional Realtor who charges my home sellers a low $9,950 set fee,which is not commission based on the home’s final sales price. But I still makea profit while doing the exact same things traditional Realtors do for theirsellers. My client’s best interest and net savings always come first. It isunfortunate some Realtors claim to be ethical while practicing theirself-serving interests. Instead of a taking seminar courses on how to defendyour commission they should take courses on true ethics to look out for theirclient’s best interest –Luis T.

DEAR LUIS: That chip on your shoulder must be very heavy.Lighten up. Real estate agents are in business to earn profits, as you are. Ifyour brokerage office can survive on $9,950 per home sale, good for you.

Purchase Bob Bruss reports online.

However, I question if you are really looking out for thebest interests of your home sellers to get top price for their residences.

You conveniently neglected to say if all your listings areimmediately placed in the local MLS (multiple listing service) and on theInternet at to give yourhome sellers maximum exposure to the market of prospective buyers representedby other agents, and how those buyer agents are compensated.


DEAR BOB: I am considering buying rental property nearAustin, Texas, which is a very good rental market. Our real estate brokerrecommends a 10 percent first mortgage to buy this property. My wife and I bothhave excellent credit. Does this make sense? –Byron T.

DEAR BYRON: You will be making two huge mistakes. The firstis buying rental property out-of-state where you are not able to manage yourown property. Nobody has as great an interest in your investment property asyou.

The second mistake is paying 10 percent mortgage interestfor a rental property in today’s market.

You should be able to obtain a much lower interest rate oninvestment property. Borrowing at 10 percent interest to buy a rental propertymakes it extremely difficult to create a positive cash flow.


DEAR BOB: I own a townhome condo that is adjacent to aneighbor who has a garage full of junk. We share a common wall. His two-cargarage doesn’t have enough room for even one car. Last year, a condo in thenext block caught fire and the place next door was ruined with smoke. I offeredto pay for a Dumpster for my neighbor and to help him clean his garage, but herefuses. The homeowner’s association is also concerned. Any suggestions? –RuthF.

DEAR RUTH: Your visit to the local fire preventiondepartment might produce results. Even if they have no authority to force theneighbor to clean his garage, a visit from a uniformed fire department officercan work wonders.

To illustrate, several years ago my neighbor had a dead treeon his property, which I politely asked him to remove. No results.

Then a friend suggested I phone the local fire preventiondepartment. Within a few days one of their officers paid a friendly visit to myneighbor, explaining the fire hazard of his dead tree. Within a week, he hadthat dead tree removed. Hopefully, you will have similar successful results.

The new Robert Bruss special report, “Five Easy Ways toBuy Your Home and Investment Property for Nothing Down,” is now availablefor $5 from Robert Bruss, 251 Park Road, Burlingame, CA 94010 or by credit cardat 1-800-736-1736 or instant Internet delivery at Questions for this columnare welcome at either address.

(For more information on Bob Bruss publications, visit his
Real Estate Center

Copyright 2006 Inman News

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