When is the seller exempt from a Transfer Disclosure Statement (TDS)

When is a seller exempt from a Transfer Disclosure Statement?
This question comes up very often. It’s required more often than you migh think.
By the way, if a Transfer Disclosure Statement (TDS) is needed then the Seller Property Questionnaire (SPQ) is needed too. State law makes it a package deal to use both forms on a transaction.
The following transfers are exempt from these disclosure requirements:
  • The sale of new homes as part of a subdivision project where a public report must be delivered to the purchaser or a public report is not required. However, when such new homes are sold through a real estate broker, the broker owes the buyer a duty to disclose any material facts which affect the value, desirability and intended use of the property;
  • Foreclosure sales;
  • Court ordered transfers;
  • Transfers by a fiduciary in the administration of a decedent’s estate, a guardianship, conservatorship, or trust except where the trustee is a former owner of the property;
  • Transfers to a spouse or to a person or persons in the lineal line of consanguinity;
  • Transfers resulting from a judgment of dissolution of marriage, or of legal separation, or from a property settlement agreement incidental to such a judgment;
  • Transfers from one co-owner to another;
  • Transfers by the State Controller for unclaimed property;
  • Transfers resulting from failure to pay taxes; and
  • Transfers to or from any governmental entity.(CAL. CIV. §§ 1102, 1102.2, 1102.3)

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Where Are Your Clients?

Where are your real estate clients? Are they offline or online?offline and online real estate marketing

There are two very important things to think about before you start on a real estate marketing campaign.

  1. What is your brand/identity
  2. Where are your clients

Brand/Identity is a topic for another day. For now we need to figure out where your clients are in order to effectively market to them.  So, this is what you do:

The first step is to draw a line between the online and offline world. Unplug your clients from the internet and think about the offline behavior of your target audience.

Where do they go when they are out and about? Are there groups that they are part of? What associative activity brings the community together and makes them a captive audience?

Schools are the most obvious example of a community staple alongside church. What about clubhouses or community events? The top agents in my community are at every neighborhood event promoting their business. When there isn’t an event they are sponsoring garage sales or promoting their local open houses.

Let’s go back online. When your target demographic is toying with the idea of buying or selling a home, how do they do it? Do they go online? If so, how would they come across you online?

Agents who have determined that their clients are online are very clever. They have an abundance of yelp reviews that mention specific keywords that relate to their niche.

They have a website dedicated exclusively to the local HOA with their info everywhere. These agents know that online clients do research and know what they are looking for. Top agents know these clients are looking up keywords that relate to housing tracts, schools district, HOAs, and other local niche words and landmarks.

What percentage of your clients are better reached online versus offline? You must determine this and dedicate a percentage of your marketing efforts to online and offline efforts before you draw up a business plan.




Not all 100% Commission Real Estate Brokerages Are Equal

The trend of 100% commission real estate brokerages is now well-established. Even big franchise names like REMAX and Coldwell Banker have been seen offering 100% commission. For agents comparing brokers to work with.

100 Commission
It’s important to note that 100% commission real estate brokers can be very different.

The first important factor to understand is that 100% commission real estate brokerages almost always charge a transaction fee. In fact, 100% commission real estate is just rebranding flat fee per transaction brokers. This means you should ask what flat fees are charged by the broker.

The next important factor is that many of the 100% commission brokers charge a monthly, quarterly fee, or even an annual fee too.

Other fees that 100% commission real estate brokerages charge include a key fee, errors & omissions (also called risk management), document storage, and sign-up fees.

These are fees you should ask about when interviewing a 100% commission real estate broker.

Other questions you should ask include:

  • Are agents paid directly by escrow or does commission have to go to the broker first?
  • Is there a conference room or workplace at the office or is the company completely virtual?
  • What other benefits are agents entitled to?
  • Is there an in-house transaction coordinator?
  • What Realtor associations are they a member of?
  • What are the hours of broker support?

These are just to name a few.

Remember, there is an abundance of 100% commission real estate brokers so take your time to determine what a good fit is.








Listing Agents Can Insure Their Sellers

Balboa Seller ProtectionFinally, listing agents can offer coverage to protect their client. If you think about it, the seller is the most vulnerable party to a transaction. The brokers and agents are covered by their errors and omissions policy. The buyer isn’t disclosing anything, and as long as they can perform the sale they are safe. Plus, the buyer gets a one year home warranty to protect against common defects. What about the seller?

The seller is the party that is assuming most of the risk. The majority of claims are against the seller for not disclosing something or for some type of defect with the property that the buyer didn’t realize until after closing. The good thing is that there is a new insurance endorsement that extends the listing broker’s errors and omissions insurance to cover the seller against claims up to $25,000 for six months after the close of escrow – at no additional cost. This means that agents can offer the seller this protection for free, which is a huge real estate marketing advantage. Also, if the seller is really concerned they can pay $200 and have the policy extended to 1 year.

Once escrow closes, the listing agents registers the seller with the insurance company and then the seller receives a certificate at their new address. Sellers seem to be exceptionally grateful which adds to referral business. We’ve found that the insurance certificate has a more profound effect than the “thank you” card because of its lasting value.

Obviously, Balboa Real Estate offers their clients this seller protection coverage. We assume that there are other companies that offer seller protection, however, we haven’t identified them yet. If you are interested in offering your clients this seller protection or learning about our true 100% commission plan then CLICK HERE


Real Estate Agent or Consultant?

We’ve all seen the real estate agents that call themselves consultants rather than agents or salespeople. The reason is blatantly obvious, and a little cheesy, but there is actually a higher Real Estate Consultantlevel and deeper meaning than these real estate consultants may have ever considered.

Let’s face it, the title “salesman” has a bad connotation. People that are in sales squeamishly change their title to something like account executive, account rep., and the sales department has been rebranded as the business development team. Real estate agents would never call themselves salespersons on a business card, and to put their title as “real estate agent” strikes some agents as cold or generic. However, “consultant” is much more elegant. It just has a ring to it that that suggests a knowledgeable advisor.

Top producing agents don’t sell homes like most salespeople sell products. A home is an extremely dynamic and personal product, consumers already have in mind their needs. Their preferences surpass what they will ever tell their agent.

This is where the title “consultant” rises to more than just a better sounding title and becomes the true sense of the word. Good agents deliver high quality data to their clients and educate their clients so they can rapidly make a sound decision. They don’t push homes onto people like most salespeople push products. Facilitating home sales is a matching and information game.

Top agents do have the qualities of top salespeople because both personality types are often charming, persuasive, and carry a purpose. These qualities are just used differently.

Agents sell their brand and character, then they get down to business and perform the work when contracted. Salespeople sell a product and use their brand and character as reinforcement to make the sale.

All top agents make good salespeople, but not all top salespeople make good agents.

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What Real Estate and Dating Have in Common

You’d be surprised how similar real estate and dating are.

Real estate agents looks for clients like singles look for mates. There is no shortage of competition and not everyone is a right fit for each other.

The client/companion relationship is made through the same sales funnel. Plus,  finding real estate clients and finding companions depends on the same major principle…

Just about every single person can give a list of qualities they have that would make them a good companion. Singles tend to think about how unfortunate it is that there isn’t someone to enjoy all their great qualities.

A single person may see a desirable person that is involved with someone that isn’t as worthy of this person’s affection. This someone may not have the abundance of qualities that the single person has, or they may just not be a good person. However, somehow this someone won over the affection of a companion

Can’t the same scenario be applied in real estate? Can’t an agent be a better agent, offer more services, even be more knowledgeable than a busy agent but then not have business to show for it? Not having business is just like being single.

The first question the single agent must ask is: how the agents that are in client relationships got into those relationships to begin with?

Certainly many “committed” agents are good at what they do and deserve their clients. However, many “committed” agents are not deserving, which means that being a good agent does not mean you will get clients.

So what does?

The ability to get lots of dates is just like the ability to get lots of clients, and they both depend on one thing: Exposure

People who know a lot of people have more options. They are on the radar and have the opportunity to publicize what they are all about.

If the single person mopes at home about the injustice of all their amazing romantic qualities going to waste then they will perpetuate being single.

If the single person expands their exposure then they will meet more people, and eventually a match.

Exposure is the action step of your network. This means expand your networking and get exposure.

Your network doesn’t have to be close friends, or people from LeTip, or even people that know much about your personally. It can be a superficial connection where a large group of people know of you and what you are about.

Single people and agents need to get out the word and build their network. This means spend time with people that will introduce you to new people. Go to events and spend time in public settings. Be there so that people meet you and find out about you.

Networking has never been easier because you don’t even have to leave home to do much of it. Social media is an amazing free networking too. You can connect with people with similar interests at a much faster rate than you could in-person.

Build you network, get exposure, and participate. Do this and get clients (and dates too).

To learn more about our True 100% Commission Plan CLICK HERE






Are You Asking for Business?

Balboa Real Estate networkingI recently attended a focus group for the Irvine Company where they had a discussion on commercial rental properties. The attendees were either senior level managers or owners of businesses that rent commercial space. We all talked through moderated conversations about improving commercial spaces while our comments were recorded through a two way mirror. The reason I bring this up is because the ability to network was a recurring topic that came up as something important to these executives.  Going further, one business owner explained that he went to every business in his building and introduced himself with his business card – which actually resulted in business for him. He also mentioned that he attends all the chamber meetings and networking events like LeTip. Even though what this person does to network is not creative or innovative, he has a tremendous advantage over competition because most people don’t even make an effort to network this much. I couldn’t help but to ask myself how many real estate agents I know that network just as much as this person – and agents are in a much more competitive industry. The answer: extremely few.


Networking is a very plain, fundamental business concept that just about everyone knows is a good thing to do. However, it is terribly neglected. Real estate agency is a business of relationships. This means you needs massive exposure to people to form these relationships and build your network. This is one of the reasons you will see bad agents get business and good agents don’t. Top producing real estate agents know a lot of people and they ask them for business.


Do a self-analysis on your networking. How often are you meeting new people? What are you doing that is expanding your network base? Remember that it’s different then marketing. Marketing is usually a one-way form of communication. Networking is more engaging, mutual introductions, and an exchange of words. Ask yourself who your target demographic is and think of ways that you can meet more of them.

To learn more about our true 100% commission plan – click here

Real Estate Training is Overrated

One thing that all big name real estate companies offer as bait to lure agents to their company is real estate training.

Real Estate trainingThis is a gimmick, and here’s why:

It is a common misconception among agents that getting training has significant impact on their success. Generally speaking, training is a way for agents to act like they are busy doing something productive. It is easy to do, because training is force fed to agents by the trainer. The hard thing for agents to do is actually engage prospects and ask for business. Training, one way or another, detracts from the simple truth that unless a real estate agent is asking for and earning business, training is 100% irrelevant.

Certainly, getting trained on a few fundamentals is a good thing to do. However, it should be done in small and precise doses so that it doesn’t interfere with overarching goal of prospecting. Just remember that there is an overabundance of agents with knowledge and an overabundance of tools to help agents conduct a transaction, but there is a shortage of clients.  When you find a client that wants to work with you, there are other agents and tools lined up to help you through the process.

It’s important to train yourself on marketing because that will assist you in engaging with your target demographic. However, this varies greatly depending on what your niche is and involves trial and error as you prospect. Most “big box” training programs on marketing are sterile and too vague to really offer the value they advertise.

In the few cases where being trained on something becomes essential for your prospecting, there is a myriad of free tools from Youtube videos and webinars to resources with your local association of Realtors. However, rarely does training warrant the split or fees that most real estate companies charge with the justification of training.

For more information on our true 100% commission plan, click here.




The Purpose of Websites for Real Estate Marketing

Many agents have the wrong idea about the purpose of their real estate website.

There is an important distinction that must be made about websites for real estate marketing

Your website is more of a trust and credibility tool and less of a lead generation tool.

Website traffic competition for real estate websites is extremely saturated. The cost to be a contender and elbow your way in for a sliver of a market share far outweighs the return on investment in Balboa Real Estate websitealmost all cases. It’s not advised to try to compete agains massive companies like Zillow and Redfin and their crippling marketing budgets for search engine traffic.

A website for real estate marketing is one that portrays you as a professional and shows that you have your act together enough to have an attractive website. This is somewhere people go to look you up when they are doing internet searches on your name in order to verify your credibility and slowly build trust. Your website should be mentioned on your marketing materials and should be full of content that will engage your target prospects in order to build a relationship.

Don’t get me wrong, your website can be geared towards lead generation too. 

If you are determined to generate leads from your website then you would need to load tremendous amounts of ultra-refined content on your website that is geared to dominate a unique segment that isn’t already heavily saturated. However, their is a cost-benefit analysis to all this. Could the efforts and resources that are put into your website to generate leads be better spent on another form of marketing. In most cases, yes, but YMMV.

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Experience 100 Percent Commission with Balboa Real Estate

Join the Balboa Real Estate team and be apart of the best 100 percent commission model in the industry

Join the Balboa Real Estate team and be apart of the best 100 percent commission model in the industry

The 100 percent commission plan has been around in the real estate industry for a long time. Many real estate agencies in California have advertised that their firms offer 100 percent commissions but when you get down to the details, there are many hidden costs that are involved and makes the 100 percent commission plan dwindle down to the broker taking half of the commission and leaving the agent with less than they deserve.

Many firms require that agents pay a startup fee upon joining. After those fees, there are monthly/quartly fees depending on the plan that you choose to go with. There might be key charge so that you may use the office. Many firms advertising 100 percent commission will charge their agents a fee for each transaction to use a transaction coordinator. One firm charges over $100 for a document storage fee. Another requires you to use a TC on your transactions and pay for those services. Since there are so many fees involved with joining a 100 percent commission firm, you would think there are many benefits that would make the monthly payments worth it. Many California Real Estate agencies offering 100 percent commission plans offer seminars, free printing, training and what not, but these benefits are not widely used by agents.

Agents would get more from a real 100 percent commission plan by joining Balboa Real Estate than the few dollars that they would gain from the free printing allowances from any other real estate firm in California offering 100 percent commission.

Join Balboa Real Estate and receive the best commission model in the industry. Our transaction fees start as low as $99. There are no monthly or quarterly fees. No sign-up fees. E&O insurance at no cost to agents. Use of our office and client meeting rooms without a key fee. No junk fees.

Balboa Real Estate is not only a real estate agency but we are a team that’s redefining the 100 percent commission model. You will be among seasoned veterans who have decades of experience in real estate and expansive knowledge on marketing that will help you in growing your business.


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