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Real estate customers for life

Contracts lock in business in advance

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An upstart company aims to lock in real estate agents' and brokers' customers with long-term contracts for future home sales and purchases. PreList America, which opened for business less than a year ago, allows agents to enter into legally binding contracts with homeowners for future business. Under this system, homeowners agree to a 20-year contract with a real estate agent for the sale of their existing home and purchase of a new home, in exchange for a discounted commission on both transactions. Agents who participate in this program, who are called "realty advisors," agree to reduce their commission on the sale of a contracted client's home by 20 percent and to give 20 percent off of the buyer-agency fee to clients who purchase a new home. Additionally, PreList America receives 9 percent of the participating agent's sale commission and 9 percent of the agent's purchase commission. For its share of commission, PreList America communicates with agents' clients through ...