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Brokerage, Residential Real Estate

September 11, 2018

Buyer Representation

There was a time when the representation of buyers in residential real estate purchases was almost impossible, due to the construct of MLS rules which included a "Unilateral Offer of Subagency" to all cooperating brokers.

This changed in the late 1980s, and the MLS rules were changed to include an offer of compensation, instead of an offer of subagency.

I then wrote the following piece for potential buyer clients:

Real estate professionals CAN exclusively represent you, the buyers, in transactions. Agent commissions can be paid at the close of escrow using the sellers as a conduit. Just because it appears on paper that the sellers pay the professional, the professional does not automatically represent the sellers in the transaction.

Commissions do not determine who represents you, actions do. If a real estate professional looks, walks and talks like he represents you, he probably will be considered your agent. He owes no duty to the sellers just because the sellers pay the commission. Compensation does not determine agency.


Signing a buyer's broker listing agreement is much more than having a real estate professional locate property, negotiate the transaction, and close the deal for you. Entering into a buyer's broker listing agreement makes the real estate professional loyal to you. They will protect your interests right up until the day the escrow closes.

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