San Francisco Real Estate: Escrow Out Loud


#25: Commission Constructs

A deal is a deal and an agreement is an agreement, right? Last week we talked about ‘real houses’ and the trend that sees developers building more condos in the city. So, this week on Escrow Out Loud, our San Francisco Real Estate podcast, we thought we would talk about new construction commission agreements in San Francisco.

New Construction

New construction differs from resale transactions as most new construction is not in the MLS – which is not just a database of homes, it is also an offer of compensation. Britton explains more about how this works and how, in new construction sales, the agents often have to sign a commission agreement with the developer which outlines how they will be paid by the developer and typically states that they are not to share their commission with the buyer. In addition, there are a variety of laws that deal with issues such as: who can receive a commission, who can receive a commission that you need a licence for etc.

Outside Escrow

But let's talk about the commonly used, straight-up agreement between a developer and agent where part of the agreement is that no part of the commission received by the agent can go to the buyer. We discuss why this makes a lot of sense from a developer’s point of view. There are ways people try to circumvent the commission agreements, but because federal lending law requires that any money exchanged in a transaction is accounted for on the closing statement, it involves going outside escrow. And guess what? This is a slippery slope to committing loan fraud!

While we always endeavor to do everything we can and go the extra mile for all our clients we also value our reputation in this industry…

Thanks for listening!

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