What is a transaction fee and should you pay it?
Dated: January 30 2019
The ever infamous broker transaction fee (also known as a broker fee, technology fee, administrative fee or a plethora of other names). Whatever someone decides to call it it’s all the same in my opinion…a duplication of fees.
In the mid 2000’s brokerages began seeing the rising costs of doing business and began to look for other ways to supplement their earnings. Many agencies decided to start charging supplemental fees in addition to the standard commission that was charged to the seller. But, this fee is not limited to the seller alone and is often times charged to the buyer as well.
In the St. Louis region these fees are disclosed on both the St. Louis Association of Realtor forms known as the Listing Agreement and the Buyer’s Agency Agreement. They are technically disclosed as required but you can bet that not all agents are in a hurry to explain these fees to there respective clients. It is important to keep in mind that in many cases this fee is mandated by the managing broker and will be charged to the Realtor regardless. In most of these cases the Realtor has the option to eat the fee themselves or pass it on to the buyer or seller.
This is where being a savvy shopper comes into play. You hired a Realtor to act in your best interest in a real estate transaction knowing that they were to receive a commission for their time and effort. After all, no one deserves to work for free. But, do you think it’s fair to be charged an additional fee for a Realtor to perform the job that he or she is already being compensated to do through commission? I know my answer! Not all agents do this so be diligent and ask when you are shopping for an agent to represent you.
The Shurtz Team will NEVER charge a transaction or administration fee to any of our clients. We understand that part of being a Realtor is performing all the duties that are required to move a deal from beginning to end. We feel that the agreed upon commission earned from the seller or cooperating broker is all the compensation needed. No need to double charge for services we are already providing as part of the normal duties of a Realtor...and we're sticking to it.
The more you know!
The Shurtz Team