YO-YO Home Buyers - Litigation Waiting to Happen?

Real Estate Agent with www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 228209

Yo-Yo Home Buyers - Litigation Waiting to Happen?...

...Who Wins in These Situations?

Yo Yo Charlotte Home BuyersHaving a fairly strong presence online with anything related to real estate in my area, I receive daily calls from people asking HOA questions about a particular complex or subdivision, about available rentals (which I do not work), about floorplans of a home that is not my listing...the list goes on and on.  I typically have a referral name or advice for whom the caller should contact but, the absolute worst is having to refer an attorney for a Charlotte home buyer who was a Yo-Yo and has found themselves in a world of hurt.


No, I'm not calling him a "Yo-Yo" -  The term is used in place of "You're on Your Own" and is a scary term in many professions but, can be quite costly when it involves real estate.


This particular buyer thought it wise to work directly with a listing agent, thinking that he would save "big bucks" not having any representation.  He told me, "I've bought 5 previous homes and THOUGHT I knew what I was doing!"  


Little did he know that his seller and their agent were BFFs and so was the inspector whom "they recommended (I) use."  Not a good sounding start to this call, for sure.


As it happens, the buyer was completely 'ripped off' and didn't realize that he ultimately didn't save the commission that he thought he was saving...in fact, this little buying process has wound up costing him tens of thousands of dollars.  He wanted advice from which to seek assistance.  I personally could only give him the names and numbers of the NC Real Estate Commission and a couple of good attorneys in the area to assist him.


Charlotte Money PitUnfortunately for him, the Commission isn't going to be able to help him get any money back and the amount of money that it will likely cost him to go through court (the expenses are too large for small claims court), will be significant as well.  The poor man was literally robbed and the sad part of the story is that had he had his own representation, chances are quite high that his buyer's agent would have caught this.


If you're a Charlotte home buyer thinking of becoming a Yo-Yo...DON'T DO IT!  I tell callers all the time, "Even if you don't hire me, hire SOMEONE to represent you!  It will save you more than you can imagine."  This gentleman is proof that it's always wise to have your own agent - remember the sellers in North Carolina have a Contract with the listing BROKERAGE.  If you don't bring your agent to be paid by that brokerage, the listing brokerage (and that agent) are compensated quite well! 

Remember...you want to enjoy those first years in your 'new' home - not spend them in agony...or in court.


© Debe Maxwell | The Maxwell House Group | SavvyBroker@me.com | YO-YO Home Buyers - Litigation Waiting to Happen?


Re-Blogged 3 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED 07/31/2014 02:05 PM
  2. Melissa Brown 08/18/2014 02:35 AM
  3. Ginger Harper 06/05/2015 12:17 PM
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Bill Kennedy
Keller Williams Realty - Greenville, SC
Homes For Sale Greenville SC

Very informative! Thanks and keep up the posts!

Jul 31, 2014 12:59 AM #43
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

Debe, How often do we hear this same scenario? It comes with surprises for the buyer who thinks he knows how to do it all on his own. Maybe they learn a valuable lesson for the next time.

Jul 31, 2014 09:03 AM #44
Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED
RETIRED / State License is Inactive - Portland, OR

What's that old saying, penny wise and pound foolish.  So . . . he thought he knew it all about REPRESENTATION simply because he bought 5 houses before.  Well, that's a very sad lesson.  I hear it more often than I'd like.  Pity they didn't have you for their buyers agent.  

Jul 31, 2014 02:01 PM #45
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Debe, love the new explanation of 'Yo-Yo'! And yes, importance of buyer's representation.

Jul 31, 2014 02:33 PM #46
Pete Xavier
Investments to Luxury - Pacific Palisades, CA
Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide

I hope he does get a great attorney and hopefully things will go the correct way.

Jul 31, 2014 02:44 PM #47
Debbie Malone
Londeree's Real Estate & Property Management - Lynchburg, VA
From Lynchburg To The Lake (434) 546-0369

Hi Debe, I love  your term YO-YO....I've had a couple of experiences with buyer's who regretted using the listing agent thinking it was somehow saving them money.

Jul 31, 2014 03:08 PM #48
Wayne Johnson
Coldwell Banker D'Ann Harper REALTORS® - San Antonio, TX
San Antonio REALTOR, San Antonio Homes For Sale

Debe-Although he may not get restitution I imagine he could cause a great deal of grief for the bad actors if he has the stomach for it. But he obviously contributed to his situation by going in without representation.

Aug 01, 2014 10:44 AM #49
Mark Don McInnes, Sandpoint
Sandpoint, ID
North Idaho Real Estate - 208-255.6227

Debe,  good post.  We can add to that the sellers who decide to cancel and deal direct.  There is a good reason 80% of FSBO's turn to a Realtor within 2 weeks.  It does not take long to realize they may be in over their head.  

Aug 01, 2014 03:13 PM #50
Debbie Walsh
Shahar Management - Middletown, NY
Hudson Valley NY Real Estate 845.283-3036

Debe good advice from a great Realtor!  In the past when people have told me they were always "told to work with the listing agent,"  I have found that they are hard to sway because they want to listen to their "knowledgeable" friends.  And like you said they pay the price!

Aug 03, 2014 01:15 AM #51
Charles Stallions
Charles Stallions Real Estate Services - Pensacola, FL
800-309-3414 - Pensacola, Pace or Gulf Breeze, Fl.

Debe you are spot on right here and I would like to think that all Realtors are about being honest and above board 

Aug 04, 2014 12:01 PM #52
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Thanks for sharing this story which should serve a a warning to home buyers that represent themselves. 

Aug 06, 2014 01:16 AM #53
Christopher Lotte
Red 1 Realty - Lithopolis, OH
Central Ohio Realtor, 614-390-9243

Hello Debe, such a genius line. "Even if you don't hire me, hire SOMEONE to represent you!  It will save you more than you can imagine."

I better apply it to myself. hehe thanks!

Aug 10, 2014 03:03 PM #54
Anna Hatridge
Goodson Realty - Farmington, MO
Missouri Realtor with Goodson Realty

Great information for buyers and as Christopher Lotte said you have a genius line!  Buyers need someone to represent them so they can get what they really want in a new home.

Aug 17, 2014 08:11 AM #55
Melissa Brown
Helen Adams Realty - Charlotte, NC
Realtor - South Charlotte NC Homes for Sale

Wow, Debe, you nailed it!  This is so important that I re-blogged it!  Thanks for sharing this story so that it may help others avoid this nightmare!

Aug 18, 2014 02:37 AM #56
Karen Feltman
Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group - Cedar Rapids, IA
Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

I had not heard this term before....Thank you for sharing your story.  Just another example of why it does not make sense for a buyer to ever be unrepresented or dually represented by the listing agent.  Though most of the time, this would be an extreme case, the opportunity is there for the buyer to be harmed by a seller and their agent.

Aug 18, 2014 02:51 AM #57
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

Debe - oh well, it is an old adage and the problem is that we do not know what we do not know. How often people don't even understand that they didn't do too well. In that sense at least your caller is lucky. He lost money and leace of mind, but NOW HE KNOWS BETTER.

How often someone would mention their purchase in the conversation and I would ask a question or two, and ouch, turns out it wasn't that kosher as they thought.

Of course, we are the smartest people, but if I decide to do without a doctor, who would I turn to complain: St. Peter or St. Paul?

Aug 26, 2014 12:20 PM #58
Les & Sarah Oswald
Realty One Group - Eastvale, CA
Broker, Realtor and Investor


Yoyo buyers need special guidance to make them aware of the benefits to hiring a professional realtor. And some clients I've had want to use you as much as they can then become yoyo when we part ways. It's ok.  It's their choice.  Eventually when they make the offer and get into escrow they may wish they had someone to represent them in the process!

Sep 07, 2014 10:31 AM #59
Michele Connors
The Overton Group, LLC Pitt & Carteret County - Greenville, NC
Your Eastern North Carolina Realtor

Such wise advise ! yoyo-- I may use that term in the future...so many think they have it all figured out by surfing the internet and watching tv shows that skim over the real grit of a transaction. Glad I stumbled in this post!

Sep 09, 2014 06:47 AM #60
William Johnson
Retired - La Jolla, CA
Retired Real Estate Professional

Hi Debe, Some very good advise and certainly it makes sense to utilize what the Seller is providing. Individual  and personal representation for the Buyers called co-op. Congrats on a great featured post!

Sep 28, 2014 04:20 PM #61
Ginny Gorman
RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate - North Kingstown, RI
Homes for Sale in North Kingstown RI and beyond

Debe, it seems to be a trend here too...they have bought many houses & know what they are doing...until they lose big on repairs and hidden items...a great reminder for buyers.

Sep 28, 2014 10:54 PM #62
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