Agent Tricks To Look For

Real Estate Agent Tricks to Watch Out For: 34 in All

Are All Buyer and Seller Agents Dirty Players?

No way. Almost all of them are genuinely in this thing to get their client the best deal as ethically as possible. But anyone who is facing pressure and who has significant money on the line, well you’d be naive to believe that the lines don’t sometimes get blurred. The primary real estate agent tricks to watch out for are listed below.

When buying or selling a home, it’s essential to beware of sneaky tricks real estate pros might use. This article will guide you through various dirty tactics used by bad actors when buying a home, so you can sidestep them and ensure a just deal.

1. Overpricing Property

Some might list your home at an unrealistically high price to secure your business, only to later suggest a price drop‚Äč‚Äč. Not cool.

2. Undervaluing Your Home Price

An agent may want a quick sale if they know you’re going to sign with them anyway. It is easy work for an old pro who underprices.

3. Conflicts of Interest in Referrals

Your rep might refer you to specific mortgage brokers or inspectors who might not have your best interest in mind, potentially leading to unfavorable outcomes‚Äč‚Äč.

4. Overpromised Marketing Efforts

An agent might promise extensive marketing for your listing but fail to deliver once the contract is signed. Demand specific details on their marketing plans‚Äč‚Äč. They may also make all manner of promises; ask for it in writing – an email will do.

5. Selective Disclosure

Seller‚Äôs agents are obligated to reveal significant facts about a property. Be wary of those who withhold critical information, such as a property’s troubled history‚Äč‚Äč.

6. ‘Ghosting’ Clients as a Dirty Tactic

They can disappear or push you off to put you on edge. Dishonest real estate agents push buttons to maybe persuade you into making snap decisions you might not make otherwise. If you‚Äôre struggling to get in touch with your rep and when they contact you they pressurize you, you might feel it‚Äôs your last chance to make an offer. Find a professional who doesn’t pull a Houdini on you.

7. Dual Agent, Double Agent

Be cautious of reps acting as a dual agent for both buyer and seller. This can lead to conflicts of interest and unfair negotiations‚Äč‚Äč. In the movies, double agents can’t be trusted. Is your property misadventure any different? We wonder how a bidding war would turn out with a guy representing both buyer and seller. Learn the realtor tricks to watch out for so you can defuse them when you spot them.

8. Misleading Listings as Bait

Some of them use outdated or fake listings to attract buyers. If a listing seems too good to be true, it might just be a bait-and-switch tactic‚Äč‚Äč. Four bedrooms listed but only three are legal bedrooms? Some misrepresent properties in the hopes that they can get away with it. Sad.

9. Manipulated Market Analysis

Dishonest agents might present a skewed comparative market analysis (CMA) to manipulate the home’s price to their advantage‚Äč‚Äč. They may cite statistics in anecdotes. Without reference material backing it, is it true or is it a tall tale? Tricks to watch for: if every anecdote  presented casts them or the work they are doing in a positive light, are they a real pro or just a narcissist?

Some agents only work with certain home inspectors. They do this because they like the inspector’s final report style which is one where the inspector tends to downplay issues with the home and skips loading the report with the small defects. Careful here. Shadow the inspector when he does the home inspection.

11. They Agree with Everything You Say

The client is not always right. That’s why they hire professionals. So if your agent is constantly agreeing to do whatever you say, whether they do it or not, be wary. This could mean that they’re inexperienced, or lying, or harebrained. You don’t want a pushover buying or selling on your behalf. You want your experts giving you advice, not the other way around. Look for a new agency if you don’t feel the love.

12. Withholding Offers is a Low Down Dirty Real Estate Agent Trick to Watch Out For

Some agents might withhold or delay presenting offers, especially in dual representation scenarios, to favor their interests. Ask your rep questions about interested buyers. What happened with that showing this morning? Were they legitimate buyers? Most people will crack under that kind of pressure. Be vigilant.

13. High-Pressure Sales Tactics

Be cautious of those pressuring you into making quick decisions or accepting unfavorable terms. This is one of the worst real estate agent tricks to watch out for.

14. Inflated Qualifications

Some may exaggerate their qualifications or success rate to gain your trust and business.

15. Misrepresenting Buyer Interest

Agents may fabricate interest in your property to compel you to lower your asking price or accept a less favorable offer. They are salespeople first and foremost. Common tricks real estate agents use are like those used by salespeople in every industry. They have been known to exaggerate to achieve a desired outcome. Buyer’s or seller’s reps are both capable of this behaviour. A buyer’s might inflate the threat of other potential buyers competing for the home. Buyer beware.

16. Real Estate Agents Use Photoshop to Sell Homes

Filters, deletions, generative fill, lighting changes, HDR-like enhancements, and even virtual staging are among the digital photo manipulations that they employ. Don’t trust listing photos. Go visit the property.

17. Steering Clients

Agents might steer buyers towards homes that offer them a higher commission, even if those homes don‚Äôt meet the buyer’s needs or budget. Many explicitly avoid showing lower commission properties. You read that right, they will skip showing you a home that could be a perfect fit because their take home would suffer. Many, many of them will not show homes that are offered as “for sale by owner”. This is a non-subtle protest of homeowners who refuse to list with an agent.

18. Rushing the Closing Process

A dirty player may rush you through the closing process, glossing over important details or contract terms. Some real estate agent tricks are not cool. This is one of them.

A bad agent puts pressure on home buyers

19. Playing on Emotions

Unscrupulous reps might play on your emotions, using fear or urgency to sway your decisions. “If you want to sell your home this year, this might be your last chance.”

20. Failing to Present All Offers

Some may fail to present all offers to you, especially if they stand to benefit more from a different deal. This is one of the real estate agent tricks to watch out for that could land your pro in some seriously hot water.

21. Exaggerating Property Features

Agents might exaggerate or misrepresent features of a property to make it more appealing to buyers. Their prerogative is to be optimistic about a home’s foibles. A real estate agent who doesn’t look on the bright side would be bad at their job; however, there’s a line, and some cross it.

22. Hidden Fees and Costs

Be aware of any hidden fees or costs that they might not disclose upfront. Ask about things like property taxes and closing costs and ask them to make a written guesstimate for you.

23. Misleading Market Information

Some might provide misleading information about the real estate market to sway your decisions or expectations.

24. Talking More Than Listening, Ignoring Client Preferences

An agent might ignore your specific preferences or requirements in a home, pushing properties that are easier for them to sell. Buyers keep your guard up. Those who use this tactic are straight up violating their ethical responsibilities. Shady players want the easy sell.

25. Overlooking Inspection Details

A tricky guy might downplay the significance of inspection reports or discourage you from requesting repairs or concessions. This is a real estate agent trick to watch out for.

26. Not Acting in Client’s Best Interest

Always ensure that your rep prioritizes your interests, especially during negotiations and closing. This is your dream home, make sure you are watching out for your interests.

27. Open Houses Can Be Fertile Ground For Real Estate Agent Tricks

There’s debate about the benefit of Open Houses. Percentage-wise, few houses are sold this way and relative to the effort and cost and risk required to host them, some homeowners question their value. You are opening your home and your valuables to random strangers. There are cases where burglars have used open houses to scout for targets.

Some real estate agents use open houses to network with home buyers handing out their card to become that client’s representative. If you’ve ever attended an open house there’s a seemingly innocent question that they often ask, “do you have a real estate agent helping you?” On the one hand, this is a perfectly reasonable and sensible question with lots of room for justifiably asking. However, sometimes they are working the room. It is sometimes a ploy to become the unrepresented buyers’ agent.

28. If the House You’re Viewing Smells Delicious, It Could Be a Sneaky Real Estate Agent

Using vanilla extract in the oven to flood the home with baked cookie-like aroma is a classic ploy. Lots of research contends that certain smells can make you more likely to buy. Or in extreme cases, the smell could be in place to cover up the home’s natural smell of mold or sewage gases or whatever else that would put off buyers.

29. One of the Common Tricks Unscrupulous Shady Real Estate Agents Use

Is to tell you that you need not attend the home inspection or to steer you away from getting one at all. This is not right and not normal and not advisable. If your agent tells you this, attend the inspection and shadow the inspector. 

30. Don’t Sign a Twelve Month Agent Representation Contract

Bring it back to 3 or 4 months maximum. This gives you the opportunity to switch agents if things aren’t going well and serves as motivation for the agent to give her in the early days of taking on the listing to get your home sold faster.

31. Shady Real Estate Tactics 101, Trying to Push For a Quick Sale vs. a Hunt for Max Money

Agents only get a percentage of the home price as their commission. So when you stand to make an additional $40,000 from a higher offer that might be around the corner, your seller agent would only make an additional $1,000. Agents are of the “bird in hand” variety, so don’t expect them to say “I think there are better offers out there”. If they get an offer, They make way more commission dollars by selling three homes for $20,000 less than they do selling one home for $30,000 extra. Think about these real estate agent tricks when you are interviewing them for the job.

32. One of the Tricks Real Estate Agents Play? Mention of Multiple Offers

Ever heard this line? “Don’t wait, there’s plenty of interest” or “Get in your offer quick, we’re showing three more buyers this afternoon” or “This property is hot it won’t last” or even “Make sure your first offer is your best offer, we’re in a competitive situation here”. Is it always true? No. Can you tell if it is true? In most jurisdictions, no. It seems like agents can just say anything to get your back up and it could come from either side, buyer or seller agent. Be careful not to move unless you want to move. And don’t overpay because one of the agents hinted you should.

33. Avoid Shady Real Estate Reps Who Show Only Their Listings or Their Brokerage’s Listings

This is not all right. An agent is duty bound to show their clients the best available match for their needs. Showing only their own or their own brokerage’s listings is a violation of that ethical responsibility. Dirty real estate agent tricks, some of them are just heinous. If you’re only seeing their listings, be suspicious.

34. Real estate agent tricks to watch out for: Advance Fee Scams

Exercise caution if a listing agent demands upfront fees for promotions or additional services. Typically, real estate agents are paid at the close of the sale, not beforehand‚Äč‚Äč. One of the many real estate agent tricks to watch out for.

Most Agents Are Good People, But They are in Business for Themselves First and Foremost, So Be Vigilant

In conclusion, understanding these tactics can help you navigate the real estate market more effectively. Real estate professionals don’t cross lines. Real estate hacks do. Some real estate agent tricks are harmless, it is your job to keep them that way. Our message is find a good agent, there are plenty out there, because they bring so much benefit.

Stay vigilant, and don’t hesitate to question your agent’s actions or seek a second opinion if something feels off. Remember, a good real estate transaction is based on transparency, fairness, and mutual respect. Use these tips to find a great agent who works with your best interests front of mind!