So, you’ve decided to buy an apartment and brave it alone; the last broker you worked with was a putz and you ended up doing their job for them. Not this time around – you’ve identified an apartment listed on StreetEasy that looks perfect and you don’t need anyone’s help. So what’s next? Contact the listing agent and schedule a viewing, right?

Not so fast. Unless you’ve got the inside scoop on how to use StreetEasy to your advantage, you may be misled into contacting that putz from your first go around. I’ll show you how to avoid having a broker assigned to you and get you right to the listing agent.

When you’re viewing a property on StreetEasy and you want more info, you will see a Contact Agent form that looks like this:

Notice the two tabs at the top of the form? The form auto-defaults to the Learn More tab and not the Seller’s Agent Info tab.

Let’s quickly discuss the differences between the two tabs:

Learn More – If you request information about a property using the Learn More tab, StreetEasy sends your contact info to another real estate agent that is not associated with the property you are inquiring about. The Learn Moretab is used to capture and forward your info to members participating in Street Easy’s Premier Agent program. Basically, you’re a new lead and you were paid for by a Premier Agent who will be calling you shortly. They probably don’t know much (if anything) about the property you emailed about, but they want to represent you on the buy side of the transaction and will arrange an appointment for you to view. See that phone number at the bottom of the form as well? That is a StreetEasy phone number that forwards your call to one of their Premier Agents. Again, not the listing agent.

Seller’s Agent Info – These are the people you actually want to get in touch with if you want a direct line to information about the property. They are in charge of the listing and represent the seller. Any and all info you want about the property can be answered by them. StreetEasy doesn’t default to this tab (because they make their money off of Premier Agents) so there’s one extra step (mouse-click) involved to finally reach the person you want to speak with.

Once you’re on the Seller’s Agent Info tab, the names of the agents will be listed, but you still have to click their name to contact them. Clicking their name will lead you to a new page with a new form that looks like this:

Now you have the actual listing agent and you can contact them directly, like you originally intended. Keep in mind, when you started this journey you chose not to be represented by an agent – so don’t let StreetEasy force one on you!

Congratulations, you just used StreetEasy like a boss.

If you found value out of this article, please like or share with your colleagues. It will help motivate me to keep writing and pushing these out.

[Kyle Jekielek is a licensed real estate salesperson at The Corcoran Group – Manhattan and Brooklyn’s largest residential real estate brokerage. Learn more about buying and selling NYC real estate at Kyle’s website:www.FearlessAgent.nyc]

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