In short, we're a Realtor's worst nightmare. They can't leverage us. "I've got another offer in, so you need to act quick!" No, no I don't. If I don't get this place, there'll be something else. Each place I've looked at is nicer than the last, and at a better price.
We looked at a place today, and we were feeling pretty good about it. We tagged along on someone else's showing, so we didn't meet the selling agent. In order to save a few bucks, Minna and I are willing to brave the process without a buyer's agent, if the seller's agent is willing to cut their commission from 6% down to 4-5%.
I thought this was pretty reasonable, and I've talked to some Realtors that were fine with such arrangements. This Realtor, on the other hand, gave me shit over it. "Oh, I'm way too busy to handle both sides of the transaction for a mere 4-5%."
Yeah, because we've eaten up so much of your day by getting you to show the house (oh, right, we didn't!). And, like a regular buyer's agent, we've dragged you to a million houses while looking for something we like (oh, right, we didn't!).
If we brought in our own buyer's agent, she'd get 3%. I'm offering her 1-2% on top of that all for the glorious chore of signing some papers. It just makes no sense to me- I'm offering you more money for doing pretty much nothing. It just boggles my mind. Even worse, she was such a raging bitch about it, that I don't even want her to get even the 3%- I don't want to do business with her. It's not that she was rude, or really lost her shit, she just started ranting at me well past the point where I was ready to drop the subject. I'm trying to cut you a deal, I'm trying to work out something were everybody wins. It's fine to say "No thanks," but she ranted at me about it well past the point where I cared anymore, and was just trying to end the phone call politely.
It's sad, because it was a nice place, but the condo fee was too steep anyway- $200/mo is just more than we could afford on top of taxes and mortgage. She had an offer in anyway (she claimed, and I believe it), so she can just hope that goes through, because I'm not going to counter offer, and if I see she's the selling agent on another property I'm interested in, I'm going to avoid it. It'd have to be something really special to get me to deal with her.
There's a reason Levitt equates NAR with the KKK (Freakonomics is an excellent read, by the way).