Costco real estate
The process of selling or buying a vaal(estate)
BY T. FOSTER JONES lue
home is inordinately expensive. As
a seller or a buyer you pay out enor-
mous amounts of money. Wouldn’t “Through Lending Tree, we have a com- $4,400,” says Renee Buckhoff, who used
it be nice to hang on to some of it? pany that has the industry expertise to work Costco’s program when her family moved to
That’s what Costco thought. And that’s with Costco members,” says John, explaining Connecticut from Texas.
why Costco’s real estate program has been that LendingTree manages more than 9,000 Sellers benefit because they also receive
such a big success with Costco members. trained and certified real estate professionals a rebate from Lending Tree based on the
In a typical real estate transaction, the who participate in the Costco program. transaction amount.
seller pays a percentage—traditionally 6 per- The program’s value is matched only by “If you’re selling and buying a home
cent—of the money from the sale of the prop- its simplicity: through the Costco program, you can get
erty to the listing agent as a commission. The Log on to the Web site or call
listing agent, in turn, splits this commission the dedicated 800 number to get a
with the buyer’s agent. choice of local agents participating
For a home with a price of $300,000, this in the program. Receive a rebate
commission amounts to $18,000—$9,000 from LendingTree when you buy
per real estate agent—a considerable chunk and/or sell your home. Done.
ofchange. “It was neat,” says James
“Our thought was ‘How can we get the Tierney, who used the program to
real estate companies to reduce their commis- relocate to a new home in Kirkland,
sion or return some of that commission to Washington. “I just filled out the
Costco members who are buying and selling Web form, and they referred us to
homes?’” says John Gleason, Costco manag- three real estate agents. We contacter of the program. ed two of them and went with the
Costco found that answer in Lending Tree. one we liked the most.”
Costco’s Real Estate
Home Price (sell or buy)
*Assuming a 6% commission split 50/50. Commissions may vary.
Lending Tree manages a network of experi- “The advantage of this is that
enced real estate agents from industry leading by directing our members through our Web money back on both transactions,” says John.
real estate companies across the country, and site or the 800 number, we are able to match “We needed to get a bigger house, but
acts as an advocate for Costco members. our members to an agent who is best suited to wanted to stay in the area,” says Tierney. “We
Members who buy or sell a home through the meet their needs,” says John. ended up saving about $10,000 on the com-
program receive a substantial rebate from “Cassandra was wonderful,” says Carol bined sale and purchase of our homes.”
Lending Tree (see chart). Rogers, referring to the real estate agent who Executive Members also receive a $100
helped in the family’s move to Puyallup, Costco Cash card from Lending Tree for clos-
Washington. “We worked very well together, ing a transaction with the program.
and she was especially helpful with some of “In addition to the rebate check, we
the challenges we experienced,” she says. received a $100 cash card,” says Buckhoff.
“She kept on until it was done right.” “That $100 paid for the Executive Member-
Buyers who use the program benefit shiprightthere.” IC
because they receive a rebate from Lending-
To get started, or for more information on
this service or Costco’s Mortgage and Home
Equity services (also provided through
Lending Tree) go to costco.com and click on
“Services,” or call 1-800-237-3806.
Tree based on the transaction amount.
We just received our rebate check of
General Program Disclosures: The real estate program is administered by Lending Tree, Inc., located at 11115 Rushmore and rebates are mailed within 4-6 weeks of closing. Rebates are not available in all states but may be realized in the form of
Dr., Charlotte, NC 28277. All required licenses are held in the name of Lending Tree. Costco and its affiliates do not list or sell reduced commissions at closing. Rebates are not available in Oregon, Tennessee and New Hampshire. Real Estate Brokerage
homes. Programs may be available on modified terms in certain areas, and availability of services may vary by region or state. Services are available in AZ, CA, CO, C T, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, ID, IL, IN, MA, MD, MI, MN, MT, NC, NH, NM, NV, NY,
Applicant must be a paid Costco member at the time of closing, otherwise applicant is not eligible for the mortgage and real OH, OR, PA, SC, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA.
estate programs. Contact a Lending Tree representative at
email@example.com or call 1-800-237-3806 for details regarding Licensing Disclosures: Real estate brokerage services are provided by licensed brokers. Lending Tree is licensed as a bro-the programs, including availability in your state. Costco programs are not available at
www.lendingtree.com. Costco Cash cards ker by the California Department of Real Estate (license #01230150); Lending Tree is a Hawaii real estate broker (license #17550).