DEAR BOB: I don’t expect you to print this letter because I am a nontraditional Realtor who charges my home sellers a low $9,950 set fee, which is not commission based on the home’s final sales price. But I still make a profit while doing the exact same things traditional Realtors do for their sellers. My client’s best interest and net savings always come first. It is unfortunate some Realtors claim to be ethical while practicing their self-serving interests. Instead of a taking seminar courses on how to defend your commission they should take courses on true ethics to look out for their client’s best interest –Luis T.

DEAR LUIS: That chip on your shoulder must be very heavy. Lighten up. Real estate agents are in business to earn profits, as you are. If your brokerage office can survive on $9,950 per home sale, good for you.

Purchase Bob Bruss reports online.

However, I question if you are really looking out for the best interests of your home sellers to get top price for their residences.

You conveniently neglected to say if all your listings are immediately placed in the local MLS (multiple listing service) and on the Internet at to give your home sellers maximum exposure to the market of prospective buyers represented by other agents, and how those buyer agents are compensated.


DEAR BOB: I am considering buying rental property near Austin, Texas, which is a very good rental market. Our real estate broker recommends a 10 percent first mortgage to buy this property. My wife and I both have excellent credit. Does this make sense? –Byron T.

DEAR BYRON: You will be making two huge mistakes. The first is buying rental property out-of-state where you are not able to manage your own property. Nobody has as great an interest in your investment property as you.

The second mistake is paying 10 percent mortgage interest for a rental property in today’s market.

You should be able to obtain a much lower interest rate on investment property. Borrowing at 10 percent interest to buy a rental property makes it extremely difficult to create a positive cash flow.


DEAR BOB: I own a townhome condo that is adjacent to a neighbor who has a garage full of junk. We share a common wall. His two-car garage doesn’t have enough room for even one car. Last year, a condo in the next block caught fire and the place next door was ruined with smoke. I offered to pay for a Dumpster for my neighbor and to help him clean his garage, but he refuses. The homeowner’s association is also concerned. Any suggestions? –Ruth F.

DEAR RUTH: Your visit to the local fire prevention department might produce results. Even if they have no authority to force the neighbor to clean his garage, a visit from a uniformed fire department officer can work wonders.

To illustrate, several years ago my neighbor had a dead tree on his property, which I politely asked him to remove. No results.

Then a friend suggested I phone the local fire prevention department. Within a few days one of their officers paid a friendly visit to myneighbor, explaining the fire hazard of his dead tree. Within a week, he had that dead tree removed. Hopefully, you will have similar successful results.

The new Robert Bruss special report, “Five Easy Ways to Buy Your Home and Investment Property for Nothing Down,” is now available for $5 from Robert Bruss, 251 Park Road, Burlingame, CA 94010 or by credit card at 1-800-736-1736 or instant Internet delivery at Questions for this column are welcome at either address.

(For more information on Bob Bruss publications, visit his
Real Estate Center

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