Author Topic: Is our realtor being tricky?  (Read 9597 times)

StarBright

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1944
Is our realtor being tricky?
« on: March 21, 2016, 09:05:54 AM »
    Hello All,

    We're having some interesting back and forths with our realtor and I'm starting to wonder if he's trying to pull one over on us. Not sure if this is the place to ask this but not sure where else to get feedback.

    Situation - selling our house remotely because we moved several months ago for a job.  We decided to sell because we're not in a place to landlord remotely right now.

    Here is some "case study" type info:
    • Bought the house for 167,000 seven years ago.
    • It is a nice, small 1300 sqf starter home, w/ 2 baths built in the early 80s. Very nice neighborhood and street but a very specific older type of neighborhood, large yards, lots of old growth trees, not a planned community.
    • We did solid upkeep and maintenance while we lived there: new roof, new water heater, lots of tree removal, new paint on house etc and one larger construction project, turning the front stoop into a nice rocking chair porch - in other words - this is a small house but not a junk house. We had honestly planned on this being our forever home but a new job took us on a new adventure.
    • After interviewing several agents in January we picked one - his answers sounded good and he had lots of contacts to organize some repairs for us.

    So there was your background and here's where we get to the part that is bothering me.
    • After doing some research on the housing market in our town we planned to spend a little bit and replace carpet and repaint a few non-neutrally colored rooms. We hoped to get about 175k for the house.
    • Realtor says we are underestimating our home - says for a few thousand more we should repaint everything, including outside trim, replace some fixtures and he guarantees we'll sell for around 185k- no problem. He's a pro who sells a ton of houses every year so I go with what he says and spend the extra money
    •   House really does look great and goes on the market for 190k. It is one of four houses for sale in our neighborhood, it is the cheapest of the four and also the lowest price per square foot
    • In the first week we had 6 showings and one second showing. 5/6 left very positive feedback saying the house showed very well and is cute but has a bit too much yard, or the second bathroom is a bit smaller than hoped for etc (valid complaints). And the second showing said they were trying to decide between our house and a new build.
    • After nine days on the market our realtor emails me and says he can't believe we haven't gotten an offer yet and we must have overpriced and I should drop our price 10k!
    • I reply that we'll be keeping it at this price a while longer because it hasn't even been on the market for two weeks
    • Then this week I started getting "automated feedback reports" basically parroting what the realtor said like "Cute house but priced about 10k too high for what it is." "House priced too high for the neighborhood - would have put in an offer if it was listed for about ten thousand less" - when we are the lowest priced house for sale in the neighborhood and selling on the low side on price per SQ for the neighborhood.  Also- these feedback reports don't correspond to any listed showings of the house. Like there are feed back reports for times when I have received no notification about showings.

    So what is going on?! At this point the house has been on the market for 19 days. I'm not worried and am happy to have it on the market another month before dropping the price (it is only March!). I have a feeling that my agent is creating these feedback reports to try to get us to drop the price - but he set the price in the first place! any thoughts? Honestly - can he even make fake reports? Am I just paranoid ?:)

     I'm not sure how these systems even work but it just seems so odd to get positive and fair feedback the first week that corresponded to scheduled showings and then this week to get feedback that all suspiciously tell us the exact same thing as our agent.

    Since we do want to sell the house this summer my gut says keep the price until around mid/late April and then drop the price to move the house.

    Thoughts appreciated and thanks for reading this long post!

« Last Edit: March 21, 2016, 09:23:29 AM by StarBright »

Another Reader

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5219
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2016, 09:27:41 AM »
Did you get detailed market and comparable sales analyses plus estimated selling prices from each of the agents you interviewed?  Or did you hire the guy that said he had the most experience and gave the best speech?  If the latter, you have created a problem.  You do not have the information needed to determine what your property is actually worth.

Without knowing where the house is or what the market is like, it's hard to say what is going on.  In many cases it's easy to game the MLS showing feedback systems.  Just partner with an agent friend and they can offer "feedback" from supposed clients.  However, that does not mean this is what is happening here.  Your agent may not be knowledgeable about the specific neighborhood, or perhaps the inventory has increased and/or the market has weakened.

How long is your listing agreement?  Is there a provision in the contract to terminate the agreement? If you are not comfortable with him, perhaps it is time to move on.  However, just leaving the property at the current price without knowing the market value makes no sense.  If you are stuck with this guy because of your listing agreement, insist he provide you a full analysis with the most recent sales, pending sales, and competing listings.  Any prospective replacement agent should do the same. 


StarBright

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1944
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2016, 09:58:06 AM »
Another Reader,

thanks for your response. We did get comps from several of the agents we interviewed and they all basically gave us the same lists and there was about a  10k spread on suggested asking prices. I ultimately chose our agent because he could line up the repairs easily and offered professional photography, house cleaning and home warranty. He said he would get it sold in a month which was a deciding factor for me when compared to other agents.

Our second choice agent (who suggested similar pricing and said to expect 60 days on the market) did have a very different different plan which included a lot more staging and renting furniture and regular open houses.

I haven't seen much inventory come on the market at our price point on zillow, trulia, etc. -but maybe he is seeing something on MLS that I can't see?

We have a six month contract but there is a "cancel at anytime if you aren't pleased" option. I figure we'll see how the next few weeks go.

Also - when I suggested an open house if he was concerned that the house wasn't getting enough traffic he said that open houses don't work and he puts his time/money into promoted listings on the sites. This makes sense to me because I've never attended an open house but did lots of online research when we bought the house originally. Ugh I'm just not a fan of this process at all.





leighb

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 163
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2016, 10:25:08 AM »
I think it's the system that it creating paranoia. Or at least it's the system that is creating misaligned incentives. Maybe in the back of your mind you realize the incentives are out of balance. Real estate agents get paid a percentage (lets say 2%). Dropping the price $10,000 effects you by $10,000, but only effects them by $200.  Dropping the price, means they get paid quicker and have to work less on selling your house.
Is your agent allowed to represent the buyer and the seller?
 

Felicity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 149
  • Age: 31
  • Location: Greater Boston Area
  • ruff!
    • Fetching Financial Freedom
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2016, 10:38:46 AM »
I haven't seen much inventory come on the market at our price point on zillow, trulia, etc. -but maybe he is seeing something on MLS that I can't see?

Unlikely...

It's been a couple years since I looked, but there are a handful of sites that have really up to date listings. My favorite was Redfin, which states here https://www.redfin.com/definition/Multiple-Listing-Service:

Quote
...our website and mobile apps are powered by the MLS, so you'll get access to the same information as real estate agents, including notifications when new homes hit the market.

I'm fairly sure other sites have this as well, but my cursory googling could not find it spelled out so clearly.

Is your agent allowed to represent the buyer and the seller?

That could explain some of the weirdness...still strange if the OP was not informed of the viewings...OP - you could ask the realtor about that, and/or reiterate how you would like to be informed of viewings. And if you're really paranoid, you could monitor comings and goings by getting a motion detector hooked up to a camera or something...or, you know, use a toothpick or something http://www.wikihow.com/Know-if-Someone-Has-Been-Looking-Through-Your-Room/Stuff. Don't tell me you've never wanted to play private eye! XD

b_girl

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 21
  • Location: US
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2016, 10:40:06 AM »
MY thoughts....

1. Ask realtor directly what the feedback is from.
2. I call BS on feedback. Anyone that says anything along the lines of 'we would have made offer if house was 10K lower' is not telling the truth IMO. People make offers for way less than 10k all.the.time. Now.. if it said 50K that would be more meaningful. I don't believe someone doesn't make an offer over 10K if they are serious.
3. Unless you are desperate (and dropping after 2 weeks says desperate) I would wait it out. Timing is everything. The fact you have the lowest priced house is meaningful also.
4. Previous poster made a GREAT point. Dropping 10K only affects agent by $300 (ish) - it's in their best interest to sell as quick as possible... regardless of price.



Cassie

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6783
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2016, 10:42:00 AM »
Having bought and sold many homes I would wait a little while. You just put it on the market. But I would not wait too long. If nothing happens in 2 weeks I would lower the price. I don't believe that someone is not making an offer if they want to and think the price is too high. They would offer 10k less and you would start negotiating.  WE once had an experienced realtor convince us our house was worth 25k more then I thought and we waited too long on changing realtors and lowering price and lost a lot of $ so be careful.   The prices dropped a lot during the time we waited. Some realtors will tell you your home is worth more then it is to get the listing.

Mr. Green

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2763
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Wilmington, NC
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2016, 11:03:25 AM »
My first thought is that your realtor is looking for the quick sale, and quick commission, based on his comments. Dropping the price after 9 days seems a tad extreme. Maybe most of his clients want the house sold fast.

conpewter

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 45
  • Age: 41
  • Location: Illinois
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2016, 11:23:56 AM »
Does seem pretty fishy. I think you are on track by keeping the house at this price for a while longer.  Make sure the online listings for the house have great photos of all parts of the house.  A lot of Realtors just want to get their commission and move on, hold out for a while longer.

Meowmalade

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1558
  • Location: Portland, OR
  • Like "Marmalade". Not like an ailing French cat.
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2016, 11:44:22 AM »
2. I call BS on feedback. Anyone that says anything along the lines of 'we would have made offer if house was 10K lower' is not telling the truth IMO. People make offers for way less than 10k all.the.time. Now.. if it said 50K that would be more meaningful. I don't believe someone doesn't make an offer over 10K if they are serious.

Agree, it's really sketchy!!  If buyers are truly interested, their agent would encourage them to go ahead with an offer.

Fishindude

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2696
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2016, 11:58:29 AM »
It's your house and your decision, don't let realtor pressure you.  Tell him / her to do their job and get you some offers. 
$10K isn't that much on that house.   If someone was seriously interested at $10K less, they would make you an offer.

I'd stick it out at original listing price for at least a couple months.
Don't know your situation, but 6-12 month sale cycle wouldn't be unusual around here.

StarBright

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1944
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2016, 01:50:16 PM »
Thanks all.

I feel better about sticking to my guns for a bit.

I know there was a legit showing yesterday afternoon because the prospective buyers stopped to talk to my neighbor to ask questions about the neighborhood. I just got a feedback on that showing which was very positive.

The house is obviously showing pretty well based on 90% feedback responses I've gotten (I'm discounting the two weird feedbacks because I don't think they are legit) so I think it might just take a little bit for a good buyer/house fit.

There are legitimate drawbacks to the property that I can see some people not wanting to deal with, like a large yard and a TON of trees and a very small master bathroom (it is basically like an extra guest bathroom that is tacked on to a master bedroom). But there will be someone out there like us that is looking for "just enough" house in a nice, established neighborhood in a great town.

I'm a little bummed about my realtor though - I'm definitely coming down on the him being fishy side of things.

To answer some questions - dual agency is legal in my state but my agent says he doesn't do that and will bring in another realtor should he have conflicting clients (if he brings in a friend, I don't see how it would help much - but there you go).

Also regarding fishindude's question about sales cycle it is a really weird market in my town. The houses in my neighborhood seem to be on the market about 40-90 days. But - People in my town also have a habit of putting their house for sale for a high asking pricing and just seeing if they get any takers. So you see a house that has been on the market for almost a year all of the sudden sell for close to asking price. A lady down the street from me in a very similar house put her house on the market three summers in a row and ended up selling it for her asking price at the end of last summer.

zephyr911

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3620
  • Age: 42
  • Location: Northern Alabama
  • I'm just happy to be here. \m/ ^_^ \m/
    • Pinhook Development LLC
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #12 on: March 21, 2016, 02:03:40 PM »
Realtor (PT) here. Yes, this sounds odd.

It's pretty easy to trigger a request for feedback... all you have to do is have any agent open the lockbox.

The price reduction requests started very quickly, and it suggests the agent had inflated the list price while intending to reduce right away for a "PRICE! REDUCED!!!" listing.

Still, if you're not getting offers, you may be a little high. The peak season is picking up and a good buyer's agent should be advising their client to just throw an offer in and see what happens. $10K under asking price does get accepted (or at least countered) often enough.

Meowmalade

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1558
  • Location: Portland, OR
  • Like "Marmalade". Not like an ailing French cat.
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #13 on: March 21, 2016, 03:20:44 PM »
I would think there is someone out there who would just love a large yard with lots of trees!  I'd hold out if I were you... if you get a serious buyer, you can talk price then.  And you definitely don't want to give off a desperate seller vibe, which is what your realtor might want for you...

tomsang

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1085
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #14 on: March 21, 2016, 03:31:05 PM »
Inform him that you went with him and put more money into the house because of his assurances that you would get $185k. Ask him if he is willing to drop his commission 1% because he was so far off the mark. 

TabbyCat

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 181
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #15 on: March 22, 2016, 05:03:27 PM »
As a buyer, I would wait at your current price, maybe a token reduction of a few thousand but not $10k. A buyer who would take it for $10k under will offer for $10k under. It sounds like you're just not in a hot market.

TabbyCat

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 181
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #16 on: March 22, 2016, 05:11:18 PM »
Forgot to add that we really enjoyed open houses and that they led us to consider more properties than we otherwise would have. It's easy to go to them, no appointments and schedule negotiations with your realtor. We offered on two houses that we probably wouldn't have even gone to if they didn't have open houses (went because why not, found the place was a lot better in person than in the pictures). This might really depend on the market though. We found in our market that the open houses bid up the price quite a bit since we're in a very competitive market.

freeat57

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 117
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #17 on: March 22, 2016, 06:22:21 PM »
This scenario sounds really familiar to me.  I had a quick relocation about 4 years ago and had to sell remotely.  The realtor kept coming up with things that needed to be fixed or "spruced up".  She always seemed to know "just the right person" to do the work.  Then, she started with the lower the price game after previously telling me she could get a higher price if only I would fix........

Realtors have a network of backs to scratch so they can get favors.  I also later found out that her husband did some of the work, to the tune of about $1,000.

If you have a good friend in your former hometown, ask them to pretend to be interested in your house and check out the realtor's story. 

Bigsacks

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 28
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #18 on: March 23, 2016, 08:25:05 AM »
I may be wrong, but I believe relators that sell TONS of properties do it by undercutting the market.......That is how they move them so fast.

robbyho

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 71
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #19 on: March 26, 2016, 07:35:04 PM »
I think you answered your own question already, but it comes down to how quickly you want to sell the property. I'm a PT Realtor and at my office we tell the seller to expect us to request a price drop after 30 days. Anything less than 30 days would be too soon IMO, but it depends on your market. If the average sale is taking 60 days, then you are on track. It seems to me that he knows you want it sold fast and he wants to make you happy by dropping the price, then blasting everyone who has shown interest in it the lower price to produce an offer.  It'll probably work too. If they considered it at $190K, surely they'd bite at $180k.

K-ice

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 964
  • Location: Canada
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #20 on: April 03, 2016, 09:13:19 AM »
I think since it is priced under $200K anyone looking in the $150-$200 range will find it regardless of the $180 or $190 price.

The one comment is totally fishy. I have always offered less & paid less than listing. This depends on market but your relator should have explained what usually happens in your area. In our current home we offered about $30K less (~10%). At first the offer wasn't accepted.

2 months later I was plesently surprised to see the home was for sale at the exact price we offered. Back then we were willing to negotiate up but not anymore.

To be honest, I'm surprised the realtors didn't talk and say "remember your client who offered x are they still interested." I don't trust or understand how realtors work but that is another discussion.

We then took the bait. However, we knew the owners were now across the country & more desperate to sell. So we now offered another $15K less and got it for $12.5 less. Almost $45K less than the original.

Now I'm sorry this is a very bad story for you as a seller. But the point I want to make is encourage your relator to at least get offers. Then you will know what people are willing to pay.



forummm

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7388
  • Senior Mustachian
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #21 on: April 03, 2016, 10:11:50 AM »
I have no idea what's going on. I will say that a realtor's goal is a sale, and a fast sale. They make money on volume. They'd rather sell 10 houses quickly for $200k than 9 houses for $210k that take an extra couple weeks. The longer the listing is open the more work they have to do and the more time they don't have a commission check in hand.

Daleth

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1205
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #22 on: April 03, 2016, 12:03:44 PM »
Anyone that says anything along the lines of 'we would have made offer if house was 10K lower' is not telling the truth IMO. People make offers for way less than 10k all.the.time.

It also doesn't make sense. If you like the house enough to make an offer but think the house should be $10k less, you would offer $10k less. The only time an asking price might make people decide to not even make an offer at all is if the place is so drastically overpriced that it makes buyers, and/or their agents, think that the seller would flatly reject a realistic offer and not even negotiate. But for a house in this price range it would have to be overpriced by like $30k-$50k, not just $10k, for that to be what's going on.

justajane

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2146
  • Location: Midwest
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #23 on: April 03, 2016, 01:10:39 PM »
Yeah, if you drop it by 10K this soon, it's not like the buyers are magically going to offer the asking price. To feel like they got a deal, they're going to possibly lowball another 10K, which might mean that, if you meet in the middle, you are out 15K instead of 10K.

All this is speculative, but I think you should wait a few more weeks.

The "feedback" is likely manufactured or the realtor already has a buyer that he or she fed that information to so that they said it.

StarBright

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1944
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #24 on: April 04, 2016, 07:34:39 AM »
Thanks everyone for the continued feedback!

We are at 30 days today and someone is doing a third walk through this afternoon. Their buyers agent was very honest with us that they like our house and town a lot - but there is a rapidly gentrifying city 15 minutes down the road that has cheaper housing and they don't know if they want to pay the premium to live in our town. Our fingers are crossed and we encouraged them to make an offer if interested. I will not be offended with an offer that is 10 or 12k lower than asking.

We are also going to keep the house at this price for at least another week or two. We live in an area with 3 major R1 Universities and our house is a great fit for Grad Students - (there is even free public transportation from our town to two of the nearby schools) Grad decision deadline is April 1 so we expect to get a few of those property seekers in the next couple weeks. This also squares with our personal experience as former grad students. We put an offer on our house April 15. Our friends who were also grad students put an offer on a house down the street the same week.

I did call an old neighbor who is a retired real estate agent and asked about the "10k" less comments. She said back when she was working, it was considered rather tacky to put in a lowball offer on a reasonably priced house and a lot of agents wouldn't do it. So you'd almost never see an offer of $170k when someone was asking $190k and the house was in a good location and in good shape.  They way she described it made it sound like people thought it was rude to negotiate. So rather than offer 20k less and hope to settle for a 10k reduction - you wait until the seller drops 7-10k off the price and then you offer 3k under the asking price. If this is really the way it works then regional differences are real! :)

Cassie

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6783
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #25 on: April 04, 2016, 02:37:51 PM »
I have lived on west and east coast and the midwest as well as TX and KS so have bought and sold many properties and it didn't work this way. People have no problem putting in a lower offer and the agent is required to do that if that is what the buyer wants.  Now if you are 50k too high then yes I think it discourages people.  We had a realtor that talked us into putting a price too high during a good market, it sat 3 months and we dumped him. It turns out if he had listed it for what we wanted to start with we would have gotten about 30k more then we did because the market continued down during that time.  Then we get a new realtor and she sets the price lower and we got a full price offer immediately. So I think you never know. Good luck and I hope these people buy your house.

jooles

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 135
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #26 on: April 06, 2016, 12:30:39 PM »
There is data that shows that realtors personal homes sit on the market longer and sell for thousands more.  When selling their own homes they are patient because they know how to price the product and how long it will take to sell.  When selling your home a $10k price reflects $300 in commission, which typically is not all theirs.  3% goes to the brokerage they work for, usually 1% goes to the realtor.  So for every $10k of price reduction you lose $10,000 and the realtor loses $100.  The realtor's motivation is to get his money in his hands quickly.  You simply cannot remove self-interest from this equation.  The realtor's self-interest is not in your best interest.  Stay the course.  You already know what to do.

StarBright

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1944
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #27 on: April 06, 2016, 03:12:32 PM »
Thanks all! We're under contract.

Buyers came in at only 2k under asking and want us to pay their closing costs. They also want to close fairly quickly -which is great for us!

That keeps us well above what the realtor wanted to drop the price to.

I'm glad I stuck to my guns and I appreciate everyone's feedback. Now, keeping fingers crossed that everything goes smoothly for the next month or so :)

Ensign1999

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 119
  • Age: 45
  • Location: Northern Virginia/Washington DC Area
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #28 on: April 08, 2016, 10:56:29 AM »
Congratulations!  Selling a house can be very stressful, especially when you feel your realtor might not have your best interests in mind.  I was going to suggest to look at some of the additional metrics available on the real estate sights that predict when it is best to sell a house in the area.  For where I live now, it says if I listed next month I would get a better sale price than if I listed now.  Interesting stuff they can do with all the data that is out there.

Congrats again.

StarBright

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1944
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #29 on: May 24, 2016, 01:08:48 PM »
Just updating because even though we closed last week (hurray!) our realtor was a bust and he ended up attempting to scam us for some cash in the end:

1. Since we were selling from out of state he had "hired" his yard guy to come mow and clean up our yard a couple of times a month and we were just sending the realtor a monthly check. Our neighbor called to tell us the yard hadn't been cut in a month and it looked awful. When I called him to complain he blamed the lawn guy but was quick to offer some money back.

2. I also realized he hadn't sent me some receipts for fixtures we upgraded in the house. I had to press him for them and when he finally got around to sending the receipts the items were actually much cheaper than the number he had originally told me to send the check for. Again he offered me money back.

3. The last (and most egregious) was that I had to request copies of the closing documents several times before the closing (he signed for us with a temporary PoA  because we couldn't get out there). When I got them it listed an extended home warranty as a seller cost, even though his firm was supposed to pay for the warranty. Even though he protested that it would delay closing and he would pay me back,  I insisted that the paperwork be changed so that I wasn't on the hook for warranty costs.

All in all, I caught almost $1,000 in "honest mistakes."

Lesson learned - never sell a house from out of state again :) and really - just don't trust people.  That being said - I'm thrilled that we are all done and we're back to being renters for the foreseeable future.

Meowmalade

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1558
  • Location: Portland, OR
  • Like "Marmalade". Not like an ailing French cat.
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #30 on: May 24, 2016, 01:31:35 PM »
That's really bad.  I would document everything and report him to the realty board.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3054
  • Location: Emmaus, PA
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #31 on: May 24, 2016, 01:41:45 PM »
Please report him to the realty ethics board.

Mr. Green

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2763
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Wilmington, NC
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #32 on: May 24, 2016, 01:59:17 PM »
Just updating because even though we closed last week (hurray!) our realtor was a bust and he ended up attempting to scam us for some cash in the end:

1. Since we were selling from out of state he had "hired" his yard guy to come mow and clean up our yard a couple of times a month and we were just sending the realtor a monthly check. Our neighbor called to tell us the yard hadn't been cut in a month and it looked awful. When I called him to complain he blamed the lawn guy but was quick to offer some money back.

2. I also realized he hadn't sent me some receipts for fixtures we upgraded in the house. I had to press him for them and when he finally got around to sending the receipts the items were actually much cheaper than the number he had originally told me to send the check for. Again he offered me money back.

3. The last (and most egregious) was that I had to request copies of the closing documents several times before the closing (he signed for us with a temporary PoA  because we couldn't get out there). When I got them it listed an extended home warranty as a seller cost, even though his firm was supposed to pay for the warranty. Even though he protested that it would delay closing and he would pay me back,  I insisted that the paperwork be changed so that I wasn't on the hook for warranty costs.

All in all, I caught almost $1,000 in "honest mistakes."

Lesson learned - never sell a house from out of state again :) and really - just don't trust people.  That being said - I'm thrilled that we are all done and we're back to being renters for the foreseeable future.
WOW! That guy absolutely needs to be reported to his state's Real Estate Commission or whatever his state uses. He should lose his license for that kind of stuff. I'm not saying he will, but he deserves to since odds are high that you're not the only client he's been shady with.

zephyr911

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3620
  • Age: 42
  • Location: Northern Alabama
  • I'm just happy to be here. \m/ ^_^ \m/
    • Pinhook Development LLC
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #33 on: May 25, 2016, 07:40:36 AM »
Just updating because even though we closed last week (hurray!) our realtor was a bust and he ended up attempting to scam us for some cash in the end:

1. Since we were selling from out of state he had "hired" his yard guy to come mow and clean up our yard a couple of times a month and we were just sending the realtor a monthly check. Our neighbor called to tell us the yard hadn't been cut in a month and it looked awful. When I called him to complain he blamed the lawn guy but was quick to offer some money back.

2. I also realized he hadn't sent me some receipts for fixtures we upgraded in the house. I had to press him for them and when he finally got around to sending the receipts the items were actually much cheaper than the number he had originally told me to send the check for. Again he offered me money back.

3. The last (and most egregious) was that I had to request copies of the closing documents several times before the closing (he signed for us with a temporary PoA  because we couldn't get out there). When I got them it listed an extended home warranty as a seller cost, even though his firm was supposed to pay for the warranty. Even though he protested that it would delay closing and he would pay me back,  I insisted that the paperwork be changed so that I wasn't on the hook for warranty costs.

All in all, I caught almost $1,000 in "honest mistakes."

Lesson learned - never sell a house from out of state again :) and really - just don't trust people.  That being said - I'm thrilled that we are all done and we're back to being renters for the foreseeable future.
I will echo the comments above. Those of us in real estate who regularly implore jaded Mustachians not to throw the baby out with the bath water are also those with the greatest vested interest in siphoning out the turds. This person is a turd. It's possible you didn't catch everything he did, but the known offenses are enough to qualify as fraud in my book. Please report them - even if all he gets is a warning, it could deter future abuses.

Cassie

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6783
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #34 on: May 25, 2016, 11:33:41 AM »
20 years ago we sold a house while out of state and did not give our realtor POA. They faxed the papers and we signed, etc. 10 years ago we had a realtor do much worse stuff and all the realtor board did was give her a warning. Ugh! Was not worth my time.

tomsang

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1085
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #35 on: May 25, 2016, 12:29:18 PM »
20 years ago we sold a house while out of state and did not give our realtor POA. They faxed the papers and we signed, etc. 10 years ago we had a realtor do much worse stuff and all the realtor board did was give her a warning. Ugh! Was not worth my time.

The effort you put into reporting these types of offensives are not meant to be for your benefit.  They are meant to stop others from being exposed.  Even if the person gets a warning, the board now has them documented as a person of interest. As others get scammed the Board will take a more proactive approach to the person.  If no one reports, then scammers get away with more and more.  Kind of like being on Jury Duty, the $10 is not worth the effort.  But people are needed for society to function properly.

zephyr911

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3620
  • Age: 42
  • Location: Northern Alabama
  • I'm just happy to be here. \m/ ^_^ \m/
    • Pinhook Development LLC
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #36 on: May 25, 2016, 01:19:37 PM »
The effort you put into reporting these types of offensives are not meant to be for your benefit.  They are meant to stop others from being exposed.  Even if the person gets a warning, the board now has them documented as a person of interest. As others get scammed the Board will take a more proactive approach to the person.  If no one reports, then scammers get away with more and more.  Kind of like being on Jury Duty, the $10 is not worth the effort.  But people are needed for society to function properly.
+1
Sometimes establishing a pattern of behavior can and does result in eventual consequences. Give the system a chance to work.

Fuzz

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 411
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #37 on: June 06, 2016, 09:59:20 PM »
Consider an online review of the realtor--easier than a report to an ethics board and pretty likely to get his attention.

JoJoP

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 235
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #38 on: June 11, 2016, 01:55:25 PM »
I have a couple of points, having just joined the conversation.

Firstly, congrats on your successful home sale! 

Remember, a realtor can't force someone to make an offer, whether your house is priced high, spot on, or low for the market.  If your home is priced high, expect the sale to take longer.  Period!  Was it priced 10K too high?  It's hard to say...  but buyers are smart and the internet helps people really do their homework.  Everybody is looking for a bargain.  I mean... EVERYBODY is looking for a bargain.  Information is at their fingertips, and buyers are much more knowledgeable than ever before.  People do  or don't make offers for a gazillion reasons. 

 A realtor's job is to present your home in its best light, and negotiate the contracts for you. 

What concerns me in your sale is the mention of the POA and the misc. expenses that were figured in, apparently without you signing off on them.  Did you get an estimated settlement BEFORE the close of escrow?  All those items, like the expenses he was billing and the Home Warranty that you paid for, should have been on the settlement statement, which should have required an approval (at least it does in my state).  Or were you paying him directly for the repairs and the gardener? 

I hope you accepted both the receipts and the difference in $$ that he offered you. 

Cyaphas

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 493
  • Age: 38
  • Location: DFW, TX
Re: Is our realtor being tricky?
« Reply #39 on: June 11, 2016, 06:08:50 PM »
Just updating because even though we closed last week (hurray!) our realtor was a bust and he ended up attempting to scam us for some cash in the end:

1. Since we were selling from out of state he had "hired" his yard guy to come mow and clean up our yard a couple of times a month and we were just sending the realtor a monthly check. Our neighbor called to tell us the yard hadn't been cut in a month and it looked awful. When I called him to complain he blamed the lawn guy but was quick to offer some money back.

2. I also realized he hadn't sent me some receipts for fixtures we upgraded in the house. I had to press him for them and when he finally got around to sending the receipts the items were actually much cheaper than the number he had originally told me to send the check for. Again he offered me money back.

3. The last (and most egregious) was that I had to request copies of the closing documents several times before the closing (he signed for us with a temporary PoA  because we couldn't get out there). When I got them it listed an extended home warranty as a seller cost, even though his firm was supposed to pay for the warranty. Even though he protested that it would delay closing and he would pay me back,  I insisted that the paperwork be changed so that I wasn't on the hook for warranty costs.

All in all, I caught almost $1,000 in "honest mistakes."

Lesson learned - never sell a house from out of state again :) and really - just don't trust people.  That being said - I'm thrilled that we are all done and we're back to being renters for the foreseeable future.

The realtor board isn't going to do jack diddly. They're a private entity that represents the realtor. Now, a state agency, in Texas it's TREC, would spark an investigation and may fine or even revoke his license. I'm not familiar with other state agencies but this guy did a whole lot of No-no's and usually those agencies are looking for bad realtors to burn.