True or false: what Realtors call “the selling agent” once a deal closes represents the Seller (no, this isn’t another “Grant’s Tomb” question).

Answer:  false.

The agent who represents the owner/seller is called “the listing agent”; post-closing, the Buyer’s agent is referred to as “the selling agent.”


Once you work in real estate sales for a while, it all kind of makes sense (kind of).

The selling agent really does sell the home — to their client.

First, they flag it on MLS, as having many of the attributes their client is looking for.

Then, they show it to their client once (or three times), sizing up its pluses and minuses; analyzing how well-priced and marketed the home is; comparing it to others the client is considering; noting the home’s location, condition and updates (or lack thereof); potential (or lack thereof); and ultimately preparing their client to write an offer.

Finally, they sell the Seller on the Buyer’s offer (got that?), coaching their client on negotiating strategy, the fine points of real estate contracts, and dozens of other details that the real estate pro’s know that novices don’t.

So, yeah, six or eight weeks later, when the property finally closes ” and months (years?) after the Buyer has begun their home search ” it’s the Buyer’s agent who has truly sold the property.

P.S.: Sometimes, the best way to sell a property is to shut up and let a Buyer who truly loves it . . . buy it.

See also, “Why is the Buyer’s Agent Called the “Selling Agent?’

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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