This to us seems like a no-brainer, yet time and time again, we see out-of-the-area agents attempting to represent clients in an area that they are not familiar with, and it’s a great disservice to the client. If a person is selling their home, they will not use someone who is not local and an expert in their area, so why would they do it when purchasing?
Where my team is located, in the Palm Springs area, this problem came to a head during the past couple of years. The proximity to Los Angeles, Orange County, and San Diego makes it appealing to agents who want a weekend in the desert combined with showing a few homes. And now that the market is so slow, there are a lot of hungry agents out there looking for any way to generate some income.
As a Realtor, you have a fiduciary duty to your clients; this practice certainly does not support that duty. I’ve lived in Newport Beach, Los Angeles, etc.…but if I had a client that wanted to purchase property in those areas, I would refer the client to an agent in that area as that’s the right thing to do.
Unless the agent has a vacation home in the area, knows it well, and consistently and recently sells homes there, or perhaps recently lived here and then moved away, there is no way that they will know all the intricacies involved. They don’t know the pros and cons of each City, development, golf course, orientation of the property, vendors, amenities, and rental rules, to name a few, not to mention the culture of each community. Heck, even agents that are located locally may not know these things, which is why you want experienced representation. As a Buyer, you need to know these things to make an informed decision.
In addition, the chances of them driving 2 hours to come out and then 2 hours back for the home inspection, any additional inspections, walk-throughs, and dozens of other things that might come up are slim in our experience. And guess who they ask to do their job for them? This is another reason that local agents don’t care to work with out-of-the-area agents. Not only do they not know the local market, they also may not do their job.
Today, I showed one of my listings for an out-of-the-area agent and his clients. The agent was a very pleasant guy, but he knew nothing about the community that my listing was in, had never been there before, was 15 minutes late because he was relying on GPS to get him there, and didn’t know where the entrance was. I felt terrible for his clients. Luckily for them, I do know everything about the community, and they and their agent had a lot of questions that I was happy to supply them with. However, those Buyers will be out of luck on any of the homes he was showing them where the Listing Agent was not there.
If you are an out-of-the-area agent, send us your buyers, and we’ll take excellent care of them and send you a referral fee.
If you are a Buyer with a friend who is a Realtor that you want to be part of the deal, have them contact us. We’ll take care of you and your Realtor friend. You’ll get the representation you deserve and your friend will have done the right thing by you and get a referral fee.