Multiple Realtors

16 Replies

I'm currently looking for a realtor who understands the investment side of real estate, and I'm talking to 2 or 3 of them. Is it unethical or in poor taste in any way to go on a first round of tours as an "interview" with more than one agent, and then afterwards pick the one agent that you're happy with? (with the understanding that if I want to make an offer on a property that I've already seen, that I would have to do so with the realtor who originally showed me the property regardless of which one I picked moving forward)

Like any one I want to do my due diligence on the property that I invest in, the terms of my financing, etc...and that includes my realtor. How am I supposed to really evaluate a realtor otherwise?

Think like an investor...not a homeowner. I use 5 agents and they all know it. They are all investor friendly so they understand why. They all know each other too.

They work for you. If your agents insist on an exclusive contract...walk away...they will not be investor friendly

My qualifiers for a REA:

1 - Must not have a problem with presenting any offer you make. If they feel you continue to make offers that are too low and have no hance, without any logic of how the offer amount came tobe, then they can walk away from you...but before that happens you should stop wasting the REA time

2 - Must make offers before you have inspected the property. Your 7-10 day inspection period on accepted offers is in the offer for that reason. If the REA says that's wasting their time, the are wrong (it's the opposite) and move on.

3 - they need to be HUD certifiied.

If the answer to any (as in all 3) of the above is a not yes...they're not investor friendly.

Originally posted by @Michael E. :

I'm currently looking for a realtor who understands the investment side of real estate, and I'm talking to 2 or 3 of them. Is it unethical or in poor taste in any way to go on a first round of tours as an "interview" with more than one agent, and then afterwards pick the one agent that you're happy with? (with the understanding that if I want to make an offer on a property that I've already seen, that I would have to do so with the realtor who originally showed me the property regardless of which one I picked moving forward)

Like any one I want to do my due diligence on the property that I invest in, the terms of my financing, etc...and that includes my realtor. How am I supposed to really evaluate a realtor otherwise?

 Michael -

I too am in the same situation. 

The agent I started out with, though not an "investors" agent - meaning not a complete understanding of the investor mind but not fully lacking in some knowledge - has worked out for the last couple of deals. Basically, it worked because I did my number crunching and knew the deals were good. 

Now after seeing how to better analyze and learning what to look for in deals- I'd like like to find a seasoned "investor agent" that will work "with" me to find deals. My agent is still of the like-mind-sales side so moving to an investor agent I think is a good step.

I've learned quite a bit in the past few months and am more confident but always looking to improve.

I don't see anything wrong with your getting  the agent that helped you find the property - I would think as long as you are honest with them they would / should understand. 

Just my opinion.

Originally posted by @Joe Villeneuve :

My qualifiers for a REA:

1 - Must not have a problem with presenting any offer you make. If they feel you continue to make offers that are too low and have no hance, without any logic of how the offer amount came tobe, then they can walk away from you...but before that happens you should stop wasting the REA time

2 - Must make offers before you have inspected the property. Your 7-10 day inspection period on accepted offers is in the offer for that reason. If the REA says that's wasting their time, the are wrong (it's the opposite) and move on.

3 - they need to be HUD certifiied.

If the answer to any (as in all 3) of the above is a not yes...they're not investor friendly.

@Joe Villeneuve: Why the HUD certification?

I think 3 agents would be a reasonable number assuming you will be buying one property.  I would want to see a past sale representing an investor, a tour and analysis of a property that you pick and a property that they suggest.  

You will need to pick out 3 potential properties and have the agents suggest unique properties, so that it is clear the representation if you purchase any of those properties.  I would expect an agent would have an agreement to represent you on any properties they find, if you sign an exclusive buyers agreement - I would limit it geographically and in time frame.

Originally posted by @Michael E. :
Originally posted by @Joe Villeneuve:

My qualifiers for a REA:

1 - Must not have a problem with presenting any offer you make. If they feel you continue to make offers that are too low and have no hance, without any logic of how the offer amount came tobe, then they can walk away from you...but before that happens you should stop wasting the REA time

2 - Must make offers before you have inspected the property. Your 7-10 day inspection period on accepted offers is in the offer for that reason. If the REA says that's wasting their time, the are wrong (it's the opposite) and move on.

3 - they need to be HUD certifiied.

If the answer to any (as in all 3) of the above is a not yes...they're not investor friendly.

@Joe Villeneuve: Why the HUD certification?

Many deals are HUD deals. HUD paperwork, that is filled out by the REA, is long and involved. If the agent isn't HUD certified, meaning they have gone through the HUD training, they will mess up many more deals than they will have accepted submittals.

If you don't include this in your vetting, that's fine, but you won't be making any successful HUD deals

Originally posted by @Joe Villeneuve :

My qualifiers for a REA:

1 - Must not have a problem with presenting any offer you make. If they feel you continue to make offers that are too low and have no hance, without any logic of how the offer amount came tobe, then they can walk away from you...but before that happens you should stop wasting the REA time

2 - Must make offers before you have inspected the property. Your 7-10 day inspection period on accepted offers is in the offer for that reason. If the REA says that's wasting their time, the are wrong (it's the opposite) and move on.

3 - they need to be HUD certifiied.

If the answer to any (as in all 3) of the above is a not yes...they're not investor friendly.

 This is very good info.

Originally posted by @Jesse T. :

I think 3 agents would be a reasonable number assuming you will be buying one property.  I would want to see a past sale representing an investor, a tour and analysis of a property that you pick and a property that they suggest.  

You will need to pick out 3 potential properties and have the agents suggest unique properties, so that it is clear the representation if you purchase any of those properties.  I would expect an agent would have an agreement to represent you on any properties they find, if you sign an exclusive buyers agreement - I would limit it geographically and in time frame.

 Never give an exclusive buyer agreement if you are an investor.  You will be hurting yourself big time.

As an agent who gets lots of calls from investors, I can offer a little input. The most important thing you can do is establish a criteria for the types of properties and price you are willing to pay. For example, single family homes in X area, where the price is ARV times .75 minus repairs. If you know exactly what you want, it will be easier for realtors to bring you deals. Once the agent brings you a deal that fits your criteria, pull the trigger. Also, be sure that your criteria is in fact possible within your local MLS listings. Have your agent send you reports of closed sales, do your research. You may not have realistic goals and need to find properties other than MLS or HUD.

If you tell your agent you're looking for a "good deal" or "it doesn't matter as long as I can make money" you're not setting either one of you up for success. 

Originally posted by @Joe Villeneuve :

 Never give an exclusive buyer agreement if you are an investor.  You will be hurting yourself big time.

Why do you say that? I can certainly think of a reason or two, but wanted to hear your answer. 

On the flip side - If I'm not going to sign an exclusive buyer agreement, shouldn't I take extra caution to avoid that realtors listings, since they will be representing the seller?

@Michael E. It would be acceptable to test out a few agents for ONE DAY. They can show you say three properties each.  After that, if you continue to use an agent, then they should be your agent.  Remember you are asking someone to put in work for FREE for you. They do this with the expectation that they may be working for FREE for you for months with the hope of getting paid at the end.

If you commit to your agent they will commit to you. If you get a reputation in the real estate community as an individual who takes advantage of agents, believe me your name will get around and many reputable agents will only not work with you, but when they see your name on offers they receive, will take that offer less seriously.

Originally posted by @Michael E. :
Originally posted by @Joe Villeneuve:

 Never give an exclusive buyer agreement if you are an investor.  You will be hurting yourself big time.

Why do you say that? I can certainly think of a reason or two, but wanted to hear your answer. 

On the flip side - If I'm not going to sign an exclusive buyer agreement, shouldn't I take extra caution to avoid that realtors listings, since they will be representing the seller?

 On agent can't cover all areas you are looking into.

One agent can't put in all the potential offers you will be making.

Agents have areas the are highly knowledgeable in, and others...not so much.

I don't have agents looking in redundant areas...as in overlapping markets/cities.  They have their exclusive markets based on their location/market.  I just don't give one agent all of my offers.  Tried that a few times.  I ended doing more work than they did.

Why avoid a realtor's listings.  If anything I want them bringing them to me first.  They know what I'm looking for.  They can still rep the seller.  If there is a potential conflict, and I need to use a different agent to make the offer, then guess what...one more reason to use more than one agent.

@Russell Brazil I've never met an agent that worked for free. The ones that said they were, I didn't use. They make a lot of money off of REI (like me). They earn it, but they still make it.

Originally posted by @Scott Schuetz :

As an agent who gets lots of calls from investors, I can offer a little input. The most important thing you can do is establish a criteria for the types of properties and price you are willing to pay. For example, single family homes in X area, where the price is ARV times .75 minus repairs. If you know exactly what you want, it will be easier for realtors to bring you deals. Once the agent brings you a deal that fits your criteria, pull the trigger. Also, be sure that your criteria is in fact possible within your local MLS listings. Have your agent send you reports of closed sales, do your research. You may not have realistic goals and need to find properties other than MLS or HUD.

If you tell your agent you're looking for a "good deal" or "it doesn't matter as long as I can make money" you're not setting either one of you up for success. 

 I'd hire you in a second Scott

I am an agent/investor who loves to deal with other investors. I do it on my own terms though. I run my team like a business as that's what it is. If I get a call from an investor they have to come into my office and meet with me before we go out and see any properties. I am not a fan of wasting time and most serious investors are not either. 

One of my best clients is an investor and I know he uses multiple agents some of which I have referred him to. I am not an expert in all areas and I understand that so if he finds a deal thats out of my area I will refer him to someone that knows that area well. 

@Matt Bohanon You can always tell the agents that actually are Investor friendly...and the ones that just say they are.  Not knowing you personally, but from reading you post above, I'd hire you in a second.

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