Beaverton Oregon Real Estate Advice: Todd, we found you on Activerain, can our agent do this?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Respect Realty LLC 200311024

I love to hear the first part... that someone found me on Activerain. But the second part, about can our agent do this? Oh, I hate to hear that, because I usually know that it isn't good, and more than likely, it is going to be a legal question that I can't answer anyway.

Well, today's question that was brought to me was this...

Myself: Thank you for calling this is Todd, how can I serve you today?

Seller: Todd, my name is blank and we have a home for sale and we found your name on Activerain.

Myself: Great, how can I help today then?

Seller: We have a question for you about our agent and if he can do what he did or not.

Myself: Well, more than likely this is going to be a legal question and I may have to refer you to the state, I can get you that number.

Ok, but let me run by our scenario with you and see what you think.

Myself: OK, shoot!

Seller: Were a FSBO and this agent came to us before we were ready to list. Finally, my wife and I decided we needed the help of an agent and this guy seemed to be helpful prior to listing our house, so we thought we would give him a shot.

He was good, did everything we expected and promised he could have our home sold in 90 days, as we requested, because we have another home under contract contingent upon this home selling.

So, we gave him a 90 day listing and after 60 days we had about 15 showings, but no offers and he suggested we lower the price and sent over a price reduction form, which I agreed to discuss with my wife. While discussing doing this we got a call for a showing the next day, and decided let's see what happens before we lower the price. Then we got another call, nd then another for a showing. In two days we ended up having 10 showings. We thought we had hit the lottery and decided not to lower the price just yet.

Myself: I could understand that and I wouldn't have either with that much activity.

Seller: Exactly! After 48 hours we got 3 offers, all lower than we were willing to take. But the last one had a multi offer addendum and a little note at the bottom that said, this is just in case our offer isn't the best already, but being we are offering $2000 more than your present asking price, we really hope ours is the best. My wife and I just looked at each other and said "WHAT?" It was actually $18,000 less than our asking price and we decided to head to the internet to read that the price of our home had been lowered the day before by $20,000 and the description line said, "Seller's desperate $20,000 price reduction, we need to sell or we will lose our new home!"

We couldn't believe what we were seeing, we hadn't signed the price reduction yet and if we had, we still hadn't discussed how much we were going to lower it yet, if we did.

So, my question to you Todd, can our agent do this without a signed document from us?

Myself: Well, no he really can't and I would call the Oregon Real Estate Agency and tell them what you told me. They can tell you exactly what you need to do and who you need to talk to. I'm sorry I really couldn't be of more help other than giving you the phone number, but that really is a question for the Oregon Real Estate Agency Legal department. I wish there really was more I could do, but here is the number it is 503-378-4170 or you can e-mail them at and please keep me informed of what happens.

If you are a buyer or seller and have any questions about real estate, please don't hesitate to call the Oregon Real Estate Agency, they are there to protect consumers. If you would like to ask me a question about real estate, I would love the chance to sit down and talk with you, educate you, and hopefully build a friendship!



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Mark E. Russell - Woburn, MA
desprite times...... probably his only listing to,  Shady shady
May 01, 2008 01:43 PM #45
Andrew Magliochetti CCIM
Helios Realty and Development - Chicago, IL
That's pathetic.  Clowns like that make all real estate professionals look bad.  You should post the agent's name...
May 01, 2008 02:03 PM #46
Russ Ravary ~ Metro Detroit Realtor call (248) 310-6239
Real Estate One - Commerce, MI
Michigan homes for sale ~
Good answer for people in trouble, without getting yourself into trouble.
May 01, 2008 02:22 PM #47
Lane Bailey
Century 21 Results Realty - Suwanee, GA
Realtor & Car Guy
Flat shady.  It would be fun to hear the excuses...  But, it's still shady. 
May 01, 2008 02:41 PM #48
Christy Powers
Keller Williams Coastal Area Partners - Pooler, GA
Pooler, Savannah Real Estate Agent
Ummm...OUCH! Well, at least they know why they got all that activity. I can't believe the agent just reduced without the form! I hope everything works out well for them!
May 01, 2008 03:00 PM #49
Pam Winterbauer
Pam Winterbauer Real Estate - San Ramon, CA
"Providing Blue Ribbon Service"
Good job handling the caller/seller. It is pretty scarey their agent took that position.
May 01, 2008 03:50 PM #50
Dick Betts
Dick Betts National Speaker - The Villages, FL
National Speaker, Web Presence Expert
Interesting story!  1.2 millions REALTORS and most are good but it's sad that a few do things like this.
May 01, 2008 04:56 PM #51
Kathy McGraw
CELLing Realty - White Water, CA
Riverside County CA Real Estate
Todd- You sure get some doozies.......I am shocked at how  that agent thought it OK to do that.  Your response was perfect.
May 01, 2008 05:16 PM #52
Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News
This agent might be related to the agent from my post earlier in the week "the devil is in the details."  Let's just see how badly we can screw up and get away with it.  I hope they do go to the board and that the agent finds himself a new profession.
May 02, 2008 12:14 AM #53
Bob Haywood
McGraw Realtors - Owasso, OK
WOW!  That agent had pretty big cahunas!  How in the world did he think he could do that without the signed form.  Recipe for disaster right there!
May 02, 2008 01:14 AM #54
Linda Scanlan
A Fan of AR - Burleson, TX
Todd - that's some scary stuff! I can't believe that agent! No wonder we sometimes have a bad reputation! You handled yourself very well..just like you're supposed to! (no surprise to me) Congratulations on your well deserved star!
May 02, 2008 12:28 PM #55
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital
We have this kind of "escalator" clause tacked onto a lot of the contracts we write or see on our listings.  It sounds like their agent might be on both sides of the transaction, something that can get anyone into trouble pretty easily.  
May 03, 2008 02:09 AM #56
Eric Egeland
RE/MAX SUBURBAN - Libertyville, IL

Wow.  I'm not sure what the agent was thinking.


I'm sure hes out of real estate by now or at least looking for a new office.

May 03, 2008 12:13 PM #57
Darleen McCullen
Raleigh, NC
Broker - Raleigh, NC Real Estate
Todd ~ What is WRONG with some people? This is exactly why those in the real estate profession have such a bad reputation - and the good, ethical individuals have to clean up the messes left behind.
May 03, 2008 02:24 PM #58
Respect Realty LLC
Respect Realty LLC - Milwaukie, OR
Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate

Erica - It was so hard to bite my tongue! I wanted to say so many things, but it really wasn't in my best interest to do so or I could have been crossing a line myself.

- If he did what he accused of, he didn't!

Ben - I agree and that is why I want to have them out of the business! I know times are tough, but that is no reason to cross the line of good business!

Evan - I hope so or there could be others!

Andrew - I don't know it and I wasn't about to ask, didn't even want to know the sellers name because I didn't want to find out before the state decided he was guilty or not.

Russ - Thank you.

Lane - I am going to be watching our Oregon Realtor newsletter to see if something like this pops up under disciplinary actions!

May 03, 2008 03:03 PM #59
Jean Powers
Kane & Associates call 510.908.9002 - Alameda, CA
CRS,e-PRO,HAFA,SFR Broker, Northern California
Oh My Goodness, in my state, which there are more lawsuits than people, that agent would be in court and not only have to pay the owners the price reduction, the agent would be liable for more!
What makes me crazy is that these types of agents give our profession a bad name and gives the public more reasons to distrust us!!!
May 03, 2008 03:07 PM #60
Respect Realty LLC
Respect Realty LLC - Milwaukie, OR
Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate

Christy - I'm guessing it is going to get worse before it gets better. I'm pretty sure they are not going to accept the offers, but at the same time, that means they are going to lose the home they are trying to buy.

Pam - I'm just hoping it was a mis-understanding, but, I'm not sure how it could have been. No signature, no price reduction.

Dick - And even sadder is this is the ones the public remembers!

Kathy - It has been awhile since I've had something bad or weird happen to me, I was hoping that someone else was starting to get them. Looks like they just gave me a break from them.

May 04, 2008 12:03 PM #61
Respect Realty LLC
Respect Realty LLC - Milwaukie, OR
Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate

Michael - ME TOO!

Cindy - I hope they find a new profession soon!

Bob - That is some pretty big ones!

Linda - Thanks!

Patricia - I got a call from someone claiming to be from the agency today, but the number didn't match the one I have on my phone. I told them I didn't know anything about it besides what the seller told me and that I told them they should call the state and ask.

- I don't know if he is or not since I didn't ask his name or company. I didn't want to get involved. But the seller hasn't called me back yet!

Darleen - Exactly!

Jean - I would love to see these sellers be able to sell their home for the lesser amount and have the agent pay the difference.

May 19, 2008 06:16 PM #62
Keller Williams Select Realtors-Buy a home in Washington DC. Sell a home in Washington DC - Bowie, MD
I don't make promises.I deliver results.SOLD HOMES

You have a great memory to actually remember everything that you said in the conversation which seemed like a lot to me. I actually got a call from someone yesterday. She said that she found out that when she got to closing that there was a tax litigation on the house. Now she is trying to get her earnest money deposit back. To cut a long story short,I told her to she needs to talk to the broker of the office. And if she is not getting the help that she needs,she needs to call Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs. And we wonder why some people just dont trust real estate professionals anymore? Great post Todd.

May 21, 2008 08:59 AM #63
Respect Realty LLC
Respect Realty LLC - Milwaukie, OR
Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate

Lanre - I wrote this post within 2 minutes of taking the phone call, so it was pretty easy to remember what I said. But, it is so important not to give legal advice, but give them the contact information of the people who can help them. It is a shame when someone like this gives the rest of us a bad name and when I run in to a FSBO that says they won't use another agent because of their experience with just one!



May 21, 2008 09:14 AM #64
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