Legally in the state of California there is no such thing as fixed commission – it’s negotiable and is set by each broker and the client individually. We usually charge 5% of the total sales price and that’s very common for FULL SERVICE agents. The commission is typically split evenly between the listing broker and the broker representing the Buyer. It’s important to offer 2.5% to the Buyer’s agents to be competitive with other listings (the vast majority of listings do). Offering less can discourage the Buyer’s agents from showing your property. We do not charge any fees for marketing or any bogus paperwork fees – you just pay one flat fee and that’s it. If your home does not sell you are not responsible to reimburse the agent for their costs.
Listing Contracts are legally binding documents and we suggest you do not sign a contract for longer than 6 months. 6 month listing contracts are standard and if it turns out your home hasn’t sold after 6 months you can either extend your contract with the agent or move on and hire someone new. Be aware that the MLS now shows cumulative days on market even when you change agents. So if your home was listed for sale for 180 days and never sold and then you re-list 6 months later it will show both the current market time with the new listing and the cumulative total combined. No more fooling the Buyers!
When hiring an agent it’s a good idea to get a written outline of the marketing they are committed to do – that way you both have a clear understanding of the services expected. Many agents who list property in Ladera Heights including some agents who have been working the neighborhood for years are not fully employing the marketing tools available and there’s no excuse for that. Always make sure you fully understand what you are signing throughout the process. Blindly signing any document your agent puts in front of you without having it clearly explained to you is foolish.
We can’t emphasize enough that you should expect and receive the service we have outlined in this web site. Competition for listings among agents is fierce and there is no reason to accept sub-standard service.