Handle This: I’m Not Paying a Buyer Agent!


“I’m not paying a buyer agent commission!”


Heard this seller objection yet? If you haven’t, it’s coming. We’ve heard it several times already at listing appointments. Understanding how to address this concern effectively is crucial for ensuring your clients make informed decisions that truly benefit their interests.

Understanding the Objection

Objections often stems from a misunderstanding. This objection is no different, fueled by misconceptions generated by the media surrounding the NAR settlement. It’s important to recognize that while it feels like resistance, it’s just a lack of understanding. Our role is to educate and guide our clients. We need to reset their perspective to see how offering buyer broker compensation can actually maximize their sale proceeds rather than diminish them.

Educating Your Seller

When faced with this objection, it’s essential to approach the conversation with empathy and facts. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to handle it:

  1. Acknowledge Their Viewpoint: Start by agreeing with the seller that, yes, they are no longer obligated to pay the buyer’s agent’s commission under the new rules. This alignment shows that you are listening and understand their point of view.
  2. Shift the Focus: Quickly transition the discussion using a level shift from saving money to maximizing sale proceeds. You can ask, “I understand that you want to save money. Said another way, the ultimate goal here is to maximize your proceeds on this sale, right?” This question reframes the conversation to focus on their end goal—netting the most money possible on the sale.
  3. Educate on Market Dynamics: Explain that the real estate market operates on the principles of supply and demand. Use simple economic terms that they can relate to. For example, “When demand is high, prices tend to increase. By not offering a buyer’s agent commission, we might reduce the pool of potential buyers, which could lead to a lower selling price.”
  4. Propose a Strategic Approach: Suggest that by offering a competitive buyer agent commission, they can attract more interest, which could lead to better offers. More demand generally equates to a better selling price, which ultimately benefits the seller financially far more than the cost of the commission.
  5. Reassure with Data: If possible, provide data or examples from your experience where properties that offered attractive commissions to buyer agents fetched higher sale prices or sold more quickly.
  6. Summarize the Benefits: Conclude by emphasizing that the goal is to sell their home at the highest possible price. By encouraging competition among buyers, they stand a better chance of achieving this.


The key to handling this objection is not to counter aggressively but to educate and guide the seller towards understanding how strategic decisions about commissions can impact their sale outcome. It’s about being penny-wise but not pound foolish. It’s critical when you deliver this concept that you do so with respect, empathy, and confidence. Otherwise, it may not land right.