Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Bought & Sold - Your Info

If you've ever looked for real estate on a website and requested info on a property you may have been harvested and sold without knowing it. We agents get emails and phone calls daily from companies offering to sell us your info for exorbitant prices. On the big three websites, ZTR, your request for info can go simultaneously to up to three agents who won't owe anyone any additional payment should you use one of them. They have already paid to be there in the margin hoping for your request. On dozens of less prominent real estate websites, the process is different. The dominating business model is selling the leads they harvest. Should you care if your info is sold to an agent? You're going to want an agent to represent you anyway. Well, when your agent is giving up a third to half of his potential pay check, his devotion to your needs may be less than enthusiastic. Below is an example of the type of agreement these companies want from the agent to whom your info is sold. I received this one this morning.

We, the Originating Broker, have referred to you, the Recipient Agent, our Customer {CUSTOMER_NAME}, a potential buyer, seller or renter, whom we have procured through our websites, including www.somethingorother.com, and direct contact. You have agreed to accept the referral of our Customer,...  subject to, this Standard Referral Agreement ("Agreement").

 With respect to any Customer, their family member, or any related party (familial or not) introduced as a result of the original referral of the Customer whom We have referred and for whom You have agreed to provide brokerage services, You agree to:

 1. Share with Us thirty (30%) percent of all gross commissions ("Referral Fee") due to You for each side of the transaction where You represent the Customer, whether the Customer buys, and/or sells and/or leases/rents any real estate, for a period of twenty-four (24) months following your acceptance of the Customer ("Referral Period").

Do yourself a favor and try to contact an agent directly rather than through a website. You deserve their total commitment to you. This includes the big franchise websites, most of whom have even more onerous referral arrangements with their agents. Here's a disgusting take on how the nation's largest brokerage is handling this process and their big plans for squeezing even more out of their agents and franchisees.

A small swell has lingered even after the great waves of last week retreated. Not nearly as big but still fun. I hope all who enjoy the warm water and waves of fall have been able to get out and partake. The mullet run is on in all it's glory so surfers who do venture out are sharing the lineup with billions of mullet and the larger predators who feed on them. Fishing from the beach is epic on days when the surf conditions allow.

"I've been poor and I've been rich.
The first one stung but the second one itched."
________________________Patrick Stump


  1. Larry my wife and i are interested in 3 bedroom on ocean view