About fifteen years ago, many “big box-big brand” real estate agencies began charging an additional fee to some clients. At the time, the fee was categorized as an “administrative charge” or even a “record keeping fee.” The amounts were relatively small, usually $99 to $199 to each client. The fee was usually retained by the BROKER, not the individual agent. This put the agent on the front lines of explaining and “collecting” the fee, because if they did not get the client to agree to pay it, the Broker took the fee out of the agent’s paycheck.
As time has passed, the fee has grown at many agencies. Recently we have seen “extra fees” from $349-$590. The funny thing is, not everyone pays the fee. The Veterans Administration will not allow the buyer to be charged an extra fee on a VA loan. Relocation companies and banks flat out refuse to pay the fee on their transactions. So who does have to pay the extra fee? Those who don’t ask not to pay it!
Integrity Real Estate Group believes that when the average real estate commission paid in this area is about $13,500, per each side of the transaction, reaching into our clients pockets for “an extra charge” is not necessary. This was one of the founding beliefs of our company. Our brokerage runs lean on unnecessary expenses, so that we can dedicate more to professional photography and marketing. While unusual circumstances might rarely necessitate an extra charge, our policy is not to tack on an extra fee for routine recordkeeping and “administrative work.”
If you are tired of being “up charged” with extra fees or pushed into using “affiliated partners” for loans, where the Broker takes a slice of the profit when you borrow, contact us for a free no-pressure meeting. More on “affiliated lenders” and how they can cost you more, in a future blog post.