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How to find the listing agent?

How to find the listing agent?
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Ask Phyllis: a blog series of frequently asked real estate questions.

Dear Phyllis,

I have been reading your real estate questions since the Glendale News Press and am so glad you continue to write for our CV Weekly. I am the trustee of my mother’s estate and have her home listed with my cousin who is a Realtor in a nearby city.

Because the real estate market is so hot, my siblings and I had hoped for more action the first week. As trustee, I tried to figure out why there were not more showings. I went on Zillow and looked up the listing, thinking perhaps my cousin didn’t have the correct information. The photos and description all seem adequate. I decided to click on the “Contact Agent” thinking maybe people were inquiring and she wasn’t responding quickly. I clicked on “Contact Agent” thinking the email would be sent to my Realtor, the listing agent. But a different Realtor – not my agent phoned me. This agent had not even seen my mother’s home.

The other option I found was “Take a Tour”. This time it did inform me “We’ll connect you with a local agent who can give you a personalized tour of the home in-person or via video chat”. I don’t know if my cousin is doing something wrong, because it only seems logical that if you contact the agent, it should be the agent the seller hired. Can you give me some insight on how best to approach this with her?


Dear Dilemma,

Unfortunately, most of these real estate websites were not designed for the consumer’s benefit, but for lead generation. These leads are sold to Realtors who typically purchase a zip code. Your cousin is not doing anything wrong. I agree that most of these listing searches are confusing. When looking at them it’s nearly impossible to determine how to find the actual listing agent. The only other option your cousin has is to opt the listing out of data submission to the internet. But then this would prevent it from being seen anywhere but the MLS.

Best of luck to you on a successful sale!

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