Real estate agent for Houston.

11 Replies | Houston, Texas

Hi. Is It normal for real estate agents in Houston to make you sign a exclusive right to act buyer agreement right off the bat? I've had this happen to me 2 times already. I'm looking for an agent to help me find homes, but I don't want to be binded to them if I don't like how they work. 

No. I'm looking for someone who will eventually represent me and my partners. But I don't want to just sign someone on without having ever worked with them.

You could try reducing the length of exclusivity. What criteria does an agent need to meet for you to consider them qualified to represent you? If you're doing your own research, finding properties determining offer prices, etc, then surely any agent can fill out a contract and submit your offer. But if you're looking for an agent to help find properties I would give them your investment criteria and have them bring you deal. If they bring you one you can sign an exclusive right to purchase that specific property. I doubt you'll get an experienced agent to go for this, but you might find someone who's hungry and just starting out. 

@Andrew Yen

Yes it’s normal. But you do have the option of firing the agent if they breach the contract.

The representation agreement outlines the basic expectations for buyer and agent and it legally authorizes the agent to represent you.

You do have options as to the location for the representation and for the duration of the representation agreement.

Talk the agent about your concern and I’m sure you can come to an agreement.

Hope this helps!

@Andrew Yen Normal?  I guess yes.  I can only speak of my office's policies.  We need to have the buyer rep signed before sending in offers.  Many agents want to protect their time, so they ask for it to be signed right away.  I only ask for it to be signed once offers are going to be submitted.  Just like you mentioned, to ask someone to sign the buyer rep when you don't even know if you are a good fit doesn't sit well with me.  I'm sure I'll get burned / have been burned for this, but the majority of the time I believe doing it this way is the better business practice.

@Andrew Yen It depends on the agent.  I operate very similarly to how @Matthew Rolf described.  I often don't ask people to sign the buyers rep agreement until it's time to submit an offer.  However I do know agents that didn't get the buyers rep agreement signed, and got burned because of it.  That is why many agents require it to be signed upfront before they work with clients.