“I Will Only Speak to the Listing Agent”

J Philip Faranda June 6, 2011

On Friday morning I checked my email and found an online inquiry from about 11pm the prior evening asking to see one of my listings in what amounted to a few short hours. There are two offers on that property, contracts are out, and the homeowner could not possibly confirm the showing on such short notice, so I asked one of my better buyer agents to reach out to the person and offer to show the property at another time as a backup. 

Today, I got an email from the person. It wasn’t terribly happy in tone, and told me to straighten out my office politics. The guy only wanted to speak with the listing agent, not a showing agent, because the listing agent would know more about the property. 

My response was as follows:

Hi,

The seller needs more notice to confirm a showing so <agent> was asked to contact you for an alternate time. We got the inquiry at 10:42pm.

These things are not office politics, I am the listing broker and all buyer inquiries are given to showing agents who can do a better job of representing buyer interests than the agent hired by the seller as their advocate. We do not engage in dual agency.

I would encourage you to contact <agent> with any questions and we’ll be glad to get you any answers sought.

Best regards

Phil Faranda

The person wrote back and insisted that the “agent never saw the property.” Obviously, he wants me only or no go. So be it.

I have a few thoughts on this. 

 

  • I have never seen most of the properties I show buyers. We seldom preview in this market. 
  • If the person does have questions, the agent can get answers from the listing agent (who, in this case, is me). We do this all the time. 
  • If the buyer insists on dealing directly with the listing agent, he will be unrepresented. He will have no advocate. I work for the seller. 
  • If the buyer is not interested in the property, they’ll just move onto the next property and the next listing agent. We won’t acquire him as a client unless he loves our bubbly charm or good looks.
  • The person seems cut from the cloth of thought that thinks that dealing with a listing agent directly is the best way to get a good deal. This is a huge fallacy. It is hard to get a true bargain without an advocate.  
Since the home has two buyers and contracts are out, I will simply ask my client how she’d like me to proceed. Given the facts, if she asks my opinion, my advice would be to not proceed with this person at all. We know all we need to know. 

 

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