What Happens When a Realtor Does Not Like Her Client?

By
Real Estate Agent with Lyon Real Estate BRE #00697006

It can happen to any Realtor, and the more transactions an agent closes, the more often it is likely to happen. I'm talking about what happens when a Realtor does not like her client. Should she continue working with that client? What if the agent starts out working with a spouse, say, the wife, but her husband takes over and is a jackass? Both of these individuals are the client.

Is it unfair to fire the wife who has done nothing wrong? These are questions I've had to struggle with lately. Ultimately, though, there was a reason why the wife handled all of the upfront negotiations. Because we'd never get as far as we had come if it had been the other way around.

You can read more in my personal blog today at this link: Must a Sacramento Listing Agent Like a Seller to List the Home?

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Elizabeth Weintraub is an author, home buying expert for About.com, a Land Park resident, and a veteran real estate agent who specializes in older, classic homes in Land Park, Curtis Park, Midtown and East Sacramento, as well as tract homes in Elk Grove, Natomas, Roseville and Lincoln. Weintraub is also a Sacramento Short Sale agent who lists and successfully sells short sales throughout the four-county Sacramento area with an emphasis on Elk Grove. Call Elizabeth Weintraub at 916.233.6759. Put 40 years of real estate experience to work for you. Broker-Associate at Lyon Real Estate. BRE License # 00697006.

The Short Sale Savior, by Elizabeth Weintraub, available with free shipping.

Photo: Unless otherwise noted in this blog, the photo is copyrighted by Big Stock Photo and used with permission.The views expressed herein are Weintraub's personal views and do not reflect the views of Lyon Real Estate. Disclaimer: If this post contains a listing, information is deemed reliable as of the date it was written. After that date, the listing may be sold, listed by another brokerage, canceled, pending or taken temporarily off the market, and the price could change without notice; it could blow up, explode or vanish. To find out the present status of any listing, please go to elizabethweintraub.com.

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like a seller to list the home
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Ambassador
2,713,517
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

If it's buyers it's SO easy to walk.  I used to struggle on the rare occassion it happened with sellers to make it work, but the last time (which was a couple of years ago) that a seller tried to micromanage the listing down to the order of the photos I just fired them. It's just NOT worth it.  

Jun 02, 2018 02:37 PM #1
Rainmaker
3,411,030
Dorie Dillard
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.346.1799 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

I have to admit Tammy Lankford, has a good point. It's much easier to fire a buyer..a seller if you're on the market its not so easy. We are problem solvers so it sup to us to make it work. Certainly we can find a path that converges with a good outcome by all.

Jun 02, 2018 02:51 PM #2
Ambassador
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Michelle Carr-Crowe-Top 1% Diamond Certified Real Estate Team Sells Cupertino San Jose Homes-Just Call 408-252-8900
Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! - San Jose, CA
Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years

Sometimes this is when the "Right to Assign" clause in the listing contract helps. 

Jun 02, 2018 03:32 PM #3
Rainmaker
2,707,596
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

What a great question and this is a business and moral decision we all have faced over the years. I always look at it and ask myself a few questions: 1. WHY is there a dislike, 2. What is the cause of it, 3. Can we work around it? then based on the answers the subject can be resolved or revisited, Endre

Jun 02, 2018 04:52 PM #4
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3,301,730
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Elizabeth- even this stager fired a client last year...well they weren't a client yet but after several back and forth calls, I knew that this was not going to work. You have to feel that you will be able to give that client your best effort. 

Jun 02, 2018 05:13 PM #5
Rainmaker
495,504
Dave Halpern
Keller Williams Realty Louisville East (502) 664-7827 - Louisville, KY
Louisville Short Sale Expert

If the client is uncooperative or abusive, fire the client ASAP

Jun 02, 2018 05:14 PM #6
Rainmaker
3,584,421
William Feela
WHISPERING PINES REALTY - North Branch, MN
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

I do my best to bite my lip but there are times I speak up.

There are times I cut them loose!

Jun 02, 2018 07:37 PM #7
Rainmaker
3,522,280
Joan Cox
Metro Brokers - House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Elizabeth, this does happen, and had this last year - the wife was a sweetheart, the husband a jackass.   I had committed to selling their house, and did so.  Was happy when it closed.  He never said thank you.

Jun 03, 2018 07:36 AM #8
Rainmaker
489,906
Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor®
Carmel by the Sea, CA
Rothwell Realty Inc. CA#01968433 Carmel-by-the-Sea

Elizabeth, the nice thing about a listing is that it has a beginning, a middle and an end, usually within a short time. But when a seller tries to put one over on you that might impact your professionalism, that's a no go for me.

Jun 03, 2018 08:27 AM #9
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Tammy Lankford, It can be really frustrating when you're working with a micromanaging seller. I have been there with the sellers who want to change a bunch of the standard terms of a listing agreement.

Fortunately, we were still at the DocuSign stage. My response is VOID.

Jun 03, 2018 10:12 AM #10
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Dorie Dillard Depends what stage you are at with a seller. If we're just sitting in MLS waiting for our "go live" date, I found a neat little trick.

Expire the listing early and the listing vanishes, no record, without trace.

Jun 03, 2018 10:15 AM #11
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Michelle Carr-Crowe-Top 1% Diamond Certified Real Estate Team Sells Cupertino San Jose Homes-Just Call 408-252-8900 Sometimes assigning to another agent will work but it does not work if the seller hates the company as well. In the interest of community spirit, we just let them go.

Jun 03, 2018 10:16 AM #12
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Endre Barath, Jr. Well, sounds like you have not encountered the many mentally deficient. I've lived long enough to know one cannot correct or change the behavior of an unbalanced person (unless you happen to have some lithium available).

Jun 03, 2018 10:19 AM #13
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Kathy Streib Exactly. You have to do your best for them, and if they are standing in the way of that, the best you can do for them is to say goodbye.

Jun 03, 2018 10:21 AM #14
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Dave Halpern Only once in the last 15 years in Sacramento have I had to fire a seller while in escrow. I don't even recall the details, some explosion happened. Then, 2 or 3 years later, the seller must have cleaned herself up, went through some sort of rehab program because she emailed me to apologize for her inexcusable behavior. I was very surprised.

Jun 03, 2018 10:39 AM #15
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

William Feela Yesterday I sprayed the whiteflies off my trees with a hose. My neighbor stuck her head out her lanai and screamed: Can you stop spraying my windows? Those people do not encourage cooperation because they are so obnoxiously rude but instead I explained I was not intentionally trying to spray her windows, I was sorry for any misplaced spray, and I would clean them.

Later, I grabbed Windex, paper towels and wiped down her window. Only because it was the right thing to do. I think they take advantage of the fact I have a conscience because that's a foreign concept to them.

Jun 03, 2018 10:48 AM #16
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Joan Cox Soon as I had the listing in MLS, all communication with the wife ceased. It was only her husband, and not having any of that. If he was abusive with me, I only imagine how abusive he is with her.

Although I remember another couple from several years back. Don't you love it when guys call you when they're drunk? Not. I told the wife the only way I would continue with the listing was if all communication was with her from there on out, and I wanted zero contact with him. They both agreed, and it was perfect.

Jun 03, 2018 10:50 AM #17
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor® Yes, I like the way you put it. I had thought about that. We were still at the beginning. I thought can I deal with this behavior when they have a hard-to-sell smelly house, overpriced for its condition and they are insufferable? Too many negatives.

Jun 03, 2018 10:57 AM #18
Ambassador
2,934,037
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

I once had a seller that insisted, after weeks of verbal abuse, that I could not fire him because I was one of a few agents that actually knew how to handle his sale, which was a short sale.  I remember telling him, "Well, you should have treated me better."  There is zero obligation for us to stay in a business relationship.  Many of us will toil through to the end, but we don't have to.

Jun 03, 2018 02:17 PM #19
Rainmaker
1,995,242
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Chris Ann Cleland Yes, the bipolar woman I had to drop while in escrow was a short sale as well, which made it 10 times worse. When you're getting jacked around by lenders, you don't need the seller doing the same thing.

Jun 03, 2018 03:03 PM #20
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