FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

From Clients:

  • What will you charge to list my home?
  • I’m upside down on my home. can you help me?
  • Should I look for an agent first, or look for a house first? Why?
  • Why should I use you, and not a big name company I see on TV?

From Agents:

  • Do I have to be high tech to work at Modern Broker, Inc?
  • I work in <insert city>. Can I join?
  • What broker support will I get?
  • How do you handle deposits?
  • How do you handle transaction files?
  • How and when do I get paid?
  • Do you have a Transaction Coordinator I can hire as needed?
  • What meetings do you have? Are they mandatory?

Clients

What will you charge to list my home?
The fee and commission is always negotiable. Each of our agents is free to negotiate independently. You are welcome to interview more than one agent to find the right balance of personality, services and cost to fit your goals.

I’m upside down on my home, can you help me?
Yes, we can help. If you would like to do a short sale, we have agents with great depth in this arena. Contact us or one of our agents for more information. However, Modern Broker does not do Loan Modifications. If you would like to attempt a loan modification and do not wish to sell your home, we are not able to help. Loan modifications are currently a hotbed for fraud in the real estate industry and we recommend that you do your homework on anyone you use for help with a loan modification. Be especially careful with anyone asking for an up-front or “advance” fee to do a loan modification. There are many non-profits and other highly-capable organizations that do not charge up-front fees to help with a loan modification.

Should I look for an agent first, or look for a house first? And why?
We always recommend choosing an agent first. In fact, we would recommend making your choices in this order: 1) Realtor, 2) Loan Officer, then 3) Your Home. While there is nothing technically “wrong” with going directly to the agent listing a house there are two downsides for you. First, if you like that house and decide it is “the one”, you need to ask yourself if you really want to be represented by the same person or company that is representing the seller. This is a precarious position for the agent to be in since they now have a fiduciary duty to both you and the seller. Some of the best agents can navigate well in this ethically murky water – many cannot! It’s not uncommon for either the buyer or seller to be shortchanged – however slightly – in the negotiation when the agent represents both sides. By choosing an agent to represent you before falling in love with a home, you are likely to find a much better outcome with a committed advocate in your corner. The second reason for picking your agent first is the vast amount of time a good agent should be able to save you. Your agent can make calls for you, preview properties for you, scour the MLS and other information sources for you, and in general provide you with an experience without all the information overload and clutter that many people find in the process of looking for homes on their own.

Why should I use you, and not a big name company I see on TV?
We feel that a real estate transaction is more about relationships and trust than it is about a “brand”. Take a look at what our past customers have to say about our agents, and choose an agent that will provide you the service you want – the way you want it.

Agents

Do I have to be high tech to work at Modern Broker?
No. You may want to read our page about what we mean by “modern”. We do provide online tools that will help you with your transaction.

I work in _________ area. Can I join?
As long as you conduct business in California, you may join. We are currently recruiting agents in Southern and Central California including Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura, San Bernardino, Riverside, Kings, Tulare, and Fresno counties. If you want to join in an area where Modern Broker doesn’t currently belong to the MLS, please contact Preston Miller (Broker) to discuss your interest.

What type of training do you offer?
Our philosophy on training is that most agents overpay their brokers for training in the form of high fees or bad commission splits. A traditional broker is never going to be able to provide the depth and specificity that you would get from outside training agencies. Programs such as those offered by Buffini, Hobbs Herder, Star Power, Mike Ferry, CRS, GRI etc. each have a unique style and approach to the business. Modern Broker lets agents keep more of their commissions in their pocket so they can spend it on the training the that best suits their individual style and needs.

What broker support will I get?
Preston is never more than a phone call away. If you’re in a pinch you can connect with email, text message, skype, chat, video chat or whatever means you like.

How do you handle deposits?
Modern Broker maintains a trust log but not a trust account. Any trust funds touched by an agent must be logged into the online trust log. We encourage agents to write contracts in a way that allows buyers to take their deposit directly to escrow upon acceptance. The new CAR purchase agreement released in 2010 makes this easier than before.

How do you handle transaction files?
Modern Broker uses a first class transaction management platform. This tool walks agents through the transaction step by step to make sure you and your client complete all the necessary paperwork and disclosures. This is a web-based system that is intuitive and requires very little time to learn… even for agents who still like the printed MLS books!

How and when will I get paid?
You have your choice of getting paid directly from escrow, if your completed file has been turned in for review 48 hours before the scheduled closing. If you need more time to complete your transaction documentation, we will mail your commission check within 2 business days of you completing your file.

Do you have a Transaction Coordinator I can hire as needed?
Yes. You are welcome to hire one of our experienced in-house transaction coordinators on an as-requested basis. You are also welcome to contract with someone outside of Modern Broker if you prefer.

What meetings do you have? Are they mandatory?
We have a weekly meeting covering industry updates, marketing ideas, recent lessons learned and other topics. These meetings are not mandatory. After every meeting, a recorded version is uploaded to the company Youtube channel, you can view past office meetings here.