Buyers are Liars (and cheats sometimes)

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Metro

Have you ever worked with Buyers non-stop, demand this, expect that and then poof?  Take this example.  We were working with pre-approved first time Buyers for about 2 months now.  Weekends, rainy afternoons, non-potty trained baby in the back seat, you get my drift (and boy did we get the babies drift!)  we found the perfect home for these people.  They looked at the property several times, with parents etc.  we discussed and planned offer price, closing date, escrow deposit and terms of the offer.  We were to meet the next morning.  30 minutes before the meeting, the wife called to delay writing the offer, citing that they wanted to "think about it" longer.  (They have to close by the end of May).  We called the Seller /Agent of the property the next day to inquire if any offers had come in.  He explained that an offer from a Mortgage Broker, representing a couple was faxed to him the previous day.  He also commented that the Mortgage Broker had never stepped foot in the house.  Guess what?  It was an offer from the young couple, written by the Mortgage Broker, with all of our discussed terms intact.  Unfortunately, on so many levels, he had a real estate license.  (Not a Realtor, but a license). 

Moral of the story?  Let me know.


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Robert and Lisa Hammerstein -201-315-8618
Keller Williams Valley Realty - Hillsdale, NJ
Bergen County NJ Real Estate

Hi Dan,

Wow!  That's one for the book.  We were aware that many other agents were experiencing disloyal buyers but it's nice to hear that we're not alone.  Love your writing style - very humorous!  Thanks for sharing this with us.  Not sure what your board is like but can you address "procuring" cause? 

May 03, 2007 06:47 AM #1
Rick Grand
nowhere - Eugene, OR
the moral of the story is to have your clients sign a Buyer's contract. That is the worst, do all of that work to have them jump ship. That is the worst. I do know Agents that use buyer's contracts so that can't happen. I know one agent that won't do business with a person if they won't sign it. For that reason alone, if you do all that work and then they jump ship.
May 03, 2007 06:49 AM #2
Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

I don't know what good procuring cause will be with a non-REALTOR.

This is why we have BA contracts.  This couple probably would not have signed one, but once they refused, you could have dropped them and not be any worse off except that you would have saved a lot of time.


May 03, 2007 06:51 AM #3
Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman
Liberty Homes - Mililani, HI
It still would be that you are the procuring cause why the couple was able to have anyone else write the contract.  You showed the property....and he didn't even see it! Bottom line, you are entitled to at least a referral fee!
May 03, 2007 06:56 AM #4
Anna Lukyanova
Century 21 Sundance Realty - Daytona Beach, FL
BA contracts are great. However, in Florida if you had the transaction brokerage notice signed be the buyer ahead of time, have documented log of times you showed them properties, have the procuring cause (you did show the house that the mortgage broker wrote the contract on), then I belive you can sue for your commission through FREC. Besides, since it did personally happen to you,  and it is not a hearsay, you can let the WORLD KNOW about the ethics of that mortgage broker, so he/she never gets referrals from other Realtors as well. You might as well tell about your intentions to that mortgage broker. That's my position on that.
May 03, 2007 07:03 AM #5
Linda Sanderson
Coldwell Banker Solano Pacific - Benicia, CA
So sorry to hear about your experience.  It does happen more often than we'd like to believe.  I once had a lender actually steal a listing from me when my clients were using him to purchase a replacement property that I represented them with,  I had their listing in escrow, had their replacement property in escrow and when the deal went sour because their buyers couldn't perform.  Their lender ended up having them drop their listing with me and then listed it with him.  Now that's underhanded and I will never forget it and continue to share his name and the story with everyone locally so they know his true colors.  I sometimes feel like I should have reported him to the Dept of RE, but didn't.  Oh well, then eventually, you let it go, put a smile on your face and work with the many other wonderful people out there.  Remember you did your best and what comes around, goes around.  Good things will come back to you soon.
May 03, 2007 07:13 AM #6
Jeff R. Geoghan
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Lancaster, PA
REALTOR, Marketing Manager
This has got to be a rare occurrence, that is, going with a mortgage broker?  Do the sellers pay commission in your area?  Here I tell my buyers right away that my fees are paid out of settlement from the sellers.
May 03, 2007 07:14 AM #7
Dan Charette
RE/MAX Metro - Saint Petersburg, FL

Its a VERY rare occurance that the Buyers write a contract with a Mortgage Broker.  It'll be interesting to see if he can get them through inspections and wont charge them steep junk fees (as they don't have a Realtor there to look over the closing statement).  As far as Buyers Agreements, its my bad.  These folks are related to former customers of ours, and we didn't even think of having them sign anything.  I hate to say it, but in this market, with real Buyers are so few and far between, Realtors are a bit touchy about having Buyers sign these things.  It also doesn't help that the forms became popular well after the fact I became an agent.  No excuse though.

We will go after the commission using procuring cause, as we introduced them to the property, discussed financing, agreed on terms, and made an appt. to write it up.  The Seller is the Listing agent, and his broker is well aware of the situation.  We tend to be protective of each other here (for the most part).


May 03, 2007 07:56 AM #8
Roger Stensland
Keller Williams Realty Puget Sound - Maple Valley, WA
Let's Move!
I guess that this is one more reason that we as Realtors need to be getting a buyer's agreement signed before showing homes to prospective buyers.  Also, I would have to report this unscrupulous person to the local Board of Realtors.  He needs his license jerked!
May 03, 2007 08:00 AM #9
Laura Karambelas
Baird & Warner Downers Grove - Downers Grove, IL
Realtor - Downers Grove

I always have a buyer's agreement signed before my 1st outing.  You should file a grievance with your board for procurring cause.

Good Luck!

May 03, 2007 09:29 AM #10
Dan Charette

The problem with reporting this jerk to the board is that he is NOT a member!!  Anyway, BA agreements are definately in my future!!  Also, with the NEW Florida Real Estate purchase agreement, Buyers had better have a good agent...its BRUTAL!

May 03, 2007 09:53 AM #11
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