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OC4Life
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎02-12-2013
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Is listing agent obligated to present all reasonable offers to the owner? Legal Vs Ethical?

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Hey Redfiners!

 

I have been on a hunt for a year, and had made several offers.  Some were accepted but didn't come thru due to various reasons, unlucky reasons, including death in the homes, sellers didn't disclose important facts, etc. 

 

With that said, two of my offers were not accepted but I have been curious about and would like some opinions on these.


#1)  Home was listed for $515k (late 2012).  I offered $565k (pre-approved finance with more than 20% down, shown proof of funds)

Result:  No counter offer was made to me.  Seller accepted cash offer from somone for $515k.  Really?  Someone willing to accept $50k less and not wait 30 days?  This doesn't make sense financially to me especially in this market, but I guess I can understand.

 

#2) Home was listed for $550k (3/2013).   I offered $565k.

Result:  Counter offer was made with a few contingencies, including agreement not contingent to appraisal, and I accepted all terms.  My offer was not accepted.  The accepted offer was $550k, and it was not a cash deal.  Apparently, the accepted offer waived the contingency to inpect the house.  It is to be noted that the house is less than 5 years old.  Does this make sense to anyone?  (As a seller, I would want extra $15k.)

 

Back to my original question, is the listing agent obligated to present all reasonable offers to the owner?  Are there regulations against listing agents only presenting the offers that come from him being dual agent for full commission? 

Assuming a listing agent were to do that, is this a question of legal Vs ethical practice?

 

This process has been educational for me. 

 

 

 

Regular Contributor
fourpheb
Posts: 95
Registered: ‎12-21-2012
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Re: Is listing agent obligated to present all reasonable offers to the owner? Legal Vs Ethical?

When you go to buy a car, do you expect the sales people to be ethical?

Contributor
KellPJ
Posts: 13
Registered: ‎10-12-2010

Re: Is listing agent obligated to present all reasonable offers to the owner? Legal Vs Ethical?

Not an expert by any means, but having just been through the process of buying and selling a home in this market, I can offer possible theories...

#1 - Cash purchase will more likely go through without a hitch. A contract with loan and appraisal contingencies could fall through if the appraisal doesn't come in at full offer price. What if the house were to appraise for only $500K? You the buyer would have to come up with the difference in cash, renogotiate the purchase price, or the seller would have to start over with a new buyer. The seller might have just wanted out asap with little hassle.

#2 - Maybe the seller was aware of a deficiency in the property that made the waiving of the inspection contingency highly desireable.

Hang in there. What eventually worked for us was getting in touch with multiple agents in our desired area. We decided we would work directly with the listing agent to eliminate a middle man. Honestly we have successfully purchased two homes during "seller's markets" using this method and with no regrets. The key for us was that the agent should be active in the community, with a reputation to protect. We also had a real estate attorney backing us up. Good luck~ I know it can be frustrating!

Contributor
KellPJ
Posts: 13
Registered: ‎10-12-2010

Re: Is listing agent obligated to present all reasonable offers to the owner? Legal Vs Ethical?

Also, I believe an agent has a legal responsibility to present ALL offers to the seller. But remember that the seller hired the agent and will be relying heavily upon their advice; if the listing agent is representing both the buyer and the seller there are additional disclosures that need to be agreed upon by both parties. I doubt that any good agent would risk getting in trouble by not presenting all offers to the seller. Of course the agent will want to have both sides of the deal if they can. If I am the seller, I am going to want to consider all aspects of the offer, not just the price. Now, if you offered $565K CASH, you would have the house. :smileywink:

Regular Contributor
Viss
Posts: 133
Registered: ‎05-24-2012
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Re: Is listing agent obligated to present all reasonable offers to the owner? Legal Vs Ethical?

#2) Home was listed for $550k (3/2013).   I offered $565k.

Result:  Counter offer was made with a few contingencies, including agreement not contingent to appraisal, and I accepted all terms.  My offer was not accepted.  The accepted offer was $550k, and it was not a cash deal.  Apparently, the accepted offer waived the contingency to inpect the house.  It is to be noted that the house is less than 5 years old.  Does this make sense to anyone?  (As a seller, I would want extra $15k.)

 

We were in a similar situation with the sellers of our home in July. The were going back and forth with a few counters and decided to go with us, even though we offered less money. We were more of a no-hassel. Considering they were buying another home with funds from their sale, they needed something they felt comfortable with in terms of a sure thing and they wanted a buyer that they felt would be "easy." We were also conventional with 20% down.