[photopress:images_1_2_3_4_5.jpg,full,alignright] I wrote an article earlier today about a scammer. I can almost appreciate the creative talents of an obvious scammer like that. But when it comes to the real estate industry, I just want to puke.
I stopped into a new construction site yesterday to evaluate it for one of my clients. There are four people in the room. A guy sitting at the site plan talking to a young asian couple and a woman standing a bit on the side. I see the guy giving the “hard sell” about two and only two “available” lots. I’m standing back and looking at the site plan and I see about 50 available lots. Only two of them have “available” stickers and 6-9 have a sold sticker. So doesn’t that mean all the ones with NO sticker are “available”?
For some reason the young couple doesn’t “get” this, but I just keep my mouth shut and wait and watch. Can’t quite figure out who the woman in the room is yet. The guy tells the young couple something about how Tuesday or Wednesday is the deadline for them to get one of those two available lots. They thank him kindly and leave to think about which one they want, if they want one at all.
When they are out of earshot, I ascertain that the woman is an employee of the builder before I step up and say, “I’m here to help one of my client’s pick a lot. Where are those big electrical towers I saw when I drove up, but don’t see on the map here?” At this point point the woman gets obviously “annoyed”. I continue to ask questions about all of the good lots. The woman keeps trying to push me at the two “available” lots. I ignore her and continue to evaluate the better lots in the development.
As I’m leaving I ask about the other developments nearby. The guy knows nothing. The woman gives me the whole run down of the builders other projects.
Then they tell me that HE is the agent for the SELLER and SHE is the on-site agent for the BUYER. What a JOKE! She is obviously the closer of the two. She obviously works for the builder and knows more about the builder’s stuff than the guy posing as the “seller’s agent”. What a “Good Guy; Bad Guy” scam that is! Nauseating, isn’t it?
I have one final question. What is the commission to a Buyer’s Agent who isn’t “the builder’s hired closer/buyer’s agent”. He says “FULL COMMISSION”. I say, “What is FULL”. She says 3%. I say, what does the buyer get if they have no “Buyer’s Agent”. She says, they get ME. LOL What a hoot. I said so the buyer gets nothing if they have no agent? No price reduction? No upgrades? No something for the builder not having to pay an extra $21,000?? Nope. Nada. Not an option. I ask if the buyer had lost the opportunity to have an agent if they had “signed in” already. They said no. Great News!
So I leave, I go to my client to evaluate the property they will be selling. I tell them there’s an extra $21,000 on the table for us to include and negotiate, if they buy that new construction (which they had asked me about), or even if they buy a different property. My fee will be less if they buy the new construction, of course, because they were the ones who asked me to go there in the first place to check it out. Well, no. They just said they were thinking of buying in there before I even met them, and didn’t ask me to check it out.
So by poking my head into the New Construction site, even though they hadn’t asked me to, I found an extra $21,000 that would have been left on the table. Turned out they will not likely buy there, at least not before considering other options. My gut says if the builder is willing to pay 3% to an agent, even though the agent wasn’t with them when the buyer first went in to the new home sales office, there’s probably something wrong with the place.
Every not lot sold in a new construction site is available. Maybe not today. Maybe they WANT to sell two at a time because it squeezes the buyer more into making a quick decision. But if it Ain’t SOLD…I’ts AVAILABLE, regardless of the little stickers. No sticker equals available.