Recently (in 2004) former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich signed a new law pertaining to real estate. The bill was railroaded through the system without fanfare and now affects everyone reading this email. It became effective immediately.
The “new” law applies to any person that has a listing agreement with a Realtor. Yes, that even covers the Flat Fee Listing Agreement. With the new law, your Realtor (in this case 4 Sale Realty), must provide at a minimum three things and they all pertain to the negotiating of the deal with the buyers. 1) We must answer any and all questions you may have. 2) We must receive any offers or counter-offers pertaining to your property. 3) We must assist you in every way in negotiating a deal with your buyer.
To paraphrase, for each and every one of you, We are required to offer you my help to negotiate the sale of your house.
We did not write the law but we must comply with it. This law was created by the big companies in an effort to make these flat fee deals too time consuming for small companies such as mine. They claim it is in the better interest of the seller. But, to be honest, the sellers were doing just fine and this is really an attempt to force all brokers into a more traditional full-service type business model. We think it borders on anti-trust violations and violates your right to free choice and our right to charge whatever we wish for my services. In a free market society, market conditions should set the price for goods and services and not the government or its lobbyist.
In compliance with the law, understand that if you are reading this and if you have a listing with our company, we must help you to negotiate your deal. Period.
So, if a Realtor asks you where do they present the offer, you can now say, fax or email it to my agent. The main office fax number is (847) 986-3520. When an offer is faxed to us it will automatically go to our email as a PDF. We will review the offer and then forward it to you with a summary of the offer. Then, we will call you to go over the details of the offer and will work with you to come up with a negotiating strategy to get you the price you want relative to the offer on the table.
Understand that we will not charge you anything for the additional work. We feel that you did not create the law nor did you expect it when you signed up for the service so we do not feel right in charging extra for the service. We will, however, take a negotiating compliance fee of up to $295.00 from the commission of the buyers Realtor as we feel it was at the insistence of the big companies that the law was passed. If the buyer is not represented by a Realtor, that fee will be waived.
For what it is worth, this bill started in the minds of the Illinois Association of Realtors and the heads of some large brokerage firms. If you are interested, the following State Senators: Tony Munoz and Martin Sandoval and the following State Representatives: Angelo “Skip” Saviano, Dan Reitz, Richard Bradley, Kurt Granberg, Michael McAuliffe, Steve Davis (no longer in office), Elizabeth Coulson, Daniel Burke, Eileen Lyons, and Patrick Verschoore sponsored this legislation. If you like this law, thank them. If you think they are forcing you to use a service that you don’t want, let them know. An interesting side note is that Patty Blagojevich was and is a traditional Realtor so this law directly benefited the governors’ wife.