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Why Are You Paying Unnecessary Fees?

As many of you know Amanda and I have been selling real estate in the Southwest Florida area since back in 2005. During that time we have seen a boom and a bust and then another boom. We have seen lots of crazy things over the years and have had smooth transactions and of course some not so smooth transactions. It’s been an interesting ride for sure and we are excited about continuing to grow our business in the years ahead.Transaction Fees in Florida

One of the craziest things we continue to see is uninformed consumers continuing to pay unnecessary transaction fees when they buy or sell a property here in Florida. With all the closings we have in our brokerage I see many settlement statements involving competing brokerages, and I see what I consider to be completely unnecessary junk fees on a daily basis. They are usually packaged as an “administrative fee” or a “transaction fee”. Whatever they call it, it’s typically a $200-$750 dollar fee and purely a way to put more money in a brokerage’s pocket.

Paying a Realtor a transaction fee is akin to paying a car dealer a dealer fee or a document fee. It’s purely junk and just sweetens the pot for the broker or the car dealer. The $200-$750 dollar fee doesn’t pay for anything that is not already being provided. Paying these fees doesn’t feel good and it’s usually tacked into the fine print of the mountain of paperwork you fill out when buying or selling a home here in Florida. Just like a car dealer, many real estate brokerages make quite a bit of extra money charging these fees.

Typically the brokerages that are charging these fees are the ones you have heard of before. They are the ones you see on TV and are national companies. Recently even the small local companies have gotten into the practice and it doesn’t seem like it is going to go away anytime soon as long as the public continues to accept paying these fees.
Realtors that work at brokerages who charge the transaction fees are trained on how to “sell” the idea of these fees to their buyers and sellers. They learn specialized scripts to handle your objections when you say that you don’t want to be charged these useless fees. Unfortunately they are quite good at separating clients from their money as evidenced by all the transaction fees that get charged over and over here in Southwest Florida.

I will stand up for my fellow Realtors, most I have talked to hate these fees but they are forced to charge them because their broker requires them to. To these agents, I feel your pain, but take some ownership in that you could choose to work for a different broker that doesn’t charge these fees…a brokerage like Program Realty.

Conclusion
These transaction fees are just a money grab for brokerages and everyone knows it even though they are not vocal about them like I am. If you are considering hiring a buyer or selling agent, one of the first questions you should ask is if their brokerage charges a transaction fee. If they do charge the fee, quickly move on to another agency that doesn’t charge the fee. Of course you know Program Realty has never and will never charge any of these fees; so if you are using one of our agents you are safe from getting overcharged. Contact us today to learn more at 941-999-9900!

Jason Painter - Program Realty

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