Those who are looking to sell often engage a real estate agent to list their property to help protect their interests. Buyers also tend to rely on the listing agent as the person who can help with the facilitation of a successful purchase. The listing agent needs to be compensated for the work performed. This may raise the matter of which party to the transaction should pay for the services.
A listing agent performs an important function in connection with working with Multiple Listing Service databases. These databases can be an excellent resource for those who want to sell or find homes. Since MLS sites can contain dozens of properties, with many of them similar, it can be tough for the home you want to sell, or the one you want to buy, to get noticed. That is the reason why it is good to bring in a professional who can get the interest of the buyers. A listing agent is the one who works to meet this goal, on behalf of the seller. As such, the listing agent is the person who is, first and foremost, protecting the interests of the seller.
But who pays the listing agent? It is usually the seller that pays the fees of the listing agent. In most cases the listing agent and the seller’s Realtor are the same person, or at least working for the same real estate office. Even when that is not the case, though, the listing agent’s fees are part of the seller’s agent’s commission. The reasons that this is the case are fairly straightforward. It is the listing agent who seeks to attract the right buyer for the home. This is the reason that it is customary and normal for the seller to cover the cost of the listing agent’s fee.
Now, there are some that might require a little bit of explanation as to exactly how the seller actually makes the payment to the listing agent. Does the seller, the seller’s agent, or the employing real estate company actually pay the money to the agent? When a seller has engaged the services of a seller’s agent, that agent will pay out a percentage of the commission to the listing agent. You could say that it is the seller’s agent or company who actually writes the check, but the seller is the one who makes the payment since that is the party who funds the total commission through selling the home.
When the seller does not hire a professional real estate agent, the homeowner may hire a listing agent and pay for the listing service directly. This could come in the form of a flat fee or it is possible that a commission would be agreed upon, to be provided at the time of the sale. In either case, the listing agent is paid from the funds accruing to the seller, and it is therefore the seller is the party who pays.
Owning and renting real estate is a good method of earning extra income, but to be a property owner, you really have to know how to protect yourself. In this article we list five things to help make your landlord experience a good one.
1. Always Get a Written Agreement Signed by You and the Tenant
Most real estate experts agree that oral contracts are, at best, useless. Even more than useless, in fact, they can turn out to be very harmful. People can forget parts of a conversation, or hear one thing when you meant to communicate another. If relationships sour and you and your tenant end up going to court, an agreement that is not written and signed can end up being difficult, if not impossible, to enforce in a legal proceeding.
2. Make Your Lease Comprehensive
You can find quite a few “boilerplate” leases available free or at a nominal cost online or in stationery stores. These leases may provide a good place starting point, but you really should personalize the lease to your unique situation and your way of doing business. You should cover subjects such as who may occupy the property (ideally only individuals named on the lease); whether or not pets are OK, what kinds, how many, and possibly a weight limitation; what alterations the tenant is or is not allowed to make to the property; whether or not the tenant can sublet; who is responsible for maintaining the property; and any other conditions.
3. Don’t Skip Doing Background Checks on Your Potential Tenants
Do you plan to rent to a habitual criminal who is deeply in debt and has been thrown out of the last two or three apartments that accepted his application? Probably not. A simple background and credit check can save you a lot of grief later.
4. Operate Well Within the Scope of the Discrimination Laws
The law at both state and Federal levels protects potential renters from being discriminated against based on such factors as gender, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, age, source of income, ethnicity, and more. Know the anti-discrimination laws and be careful not to violate them.
5. Take Care of Problems Right Away
Don’t ignore problems, especially situations like tenants falling behind in their rent or violating a provision of the lease. A nice way of thinking of it is that some people need a little help in learning good habits. If the tenants are violating some provision of the lease, notify them about their responsibilities immediately and stay on them until the problem is corrected. Your final recourse, which is trouble you’ll not want to be pushed into, is an eviction notice.
Renting out property is not a get rich quick scheme. It takes patience and a good dose of luck. Following these rules will help you avoid some of the more troublesome traps that many landlords can and make renting a happier and more pleasant experience not only for you but for your tenants as well.
This site is intended for clients that are not currently registered with a Broker. If you have a current Buyers Representation Agreement signed with another Texas real estate Broker, please contact your Agent or Broker. Texas Real Estate Commission Consumer Protection Notice