# 17-049/VI (2017-05-31)

Author(s)
Pieter Gautier, VU Amsterdam and Tinbergen Institute, The Netherlands; Arjen Siegmann, VU Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Aico van Vuuren, University of Gothenburg
Keywords:
real-estate brokers, broker incentives, housing, agency
JEL codes:
D80, L10, L80, R20, R30

Do higher real-estate agent fees imply better performance? This study uses a nation-wide data set of residential real-estate transactions in the Netherlands from 1985 to 2011 to provide evidence against this. Brokers with a flat-fee structure who charge an up-front fee (which is substantially lower than the average fee of traditional brokers) and leave the viewings to the seller sell faster and at - on average - 2.7 percent higher prices. We correct for fixed house- and time effects. We provide additional evidence that the price dfference is not due to a seller-selection effect.