Wednesday, March 21, 2007

You Get What You Pay For: How a "Discount Agent" Fails in San Francisco

Parlaying from my last post on the re-birth of multiple offers in San Francisco, here is a tale of a recent multiple offer situation where one buyer lost out using the discount online broker Redfin.com.

Redfin.com's home page claims that buyer's work with experienced local agents who are experts in negotiating. They also offer 100% satisfaction and a 66% commission refund. Since the birth of Redfin.com, I have not yet met one of their agents.

Yesterday a Redfin.com agent put in an offer for a buyer on a single family home in the Inner Parkside. Ocean views and decently priced, with an offer date of 15 days after it had hit the market.

The Redfin.com agent never went to the property prior to submitting the offer for his clients. He never personally spoke to the listing agent and faxed the offer in. The offer was below asking price. The property received 12 offers and went into contract way over asking.

We aren't sure why the agent submitted an offer under list price. Perhaps that was all the buyers could afford. Or perhaps the agent didn't do his homework; if he had at least called the day before final submission, he would have known there was tremendous competition for the property and either helped the buyers be more aggressive or realize they had to bow out.

Of course, the possibility does exist that one can work with a physically available, local, human agent here in San Francisco and still receive the same lacking service, dedication and skill. My advice: get a new agent fast. When it comes to real estate agents, you get what you pay for.

Have questions about the real estate market? Ready to buy or sell a home? Contact me today to work with an honest, experienced agent.

Amy Blakeley, Realtor
McGuire Real Estate
www.amyblakeley.com
ablakeley at mcguire.com





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