Crime & Safety in 60302>Question Details

Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558

What do you do when you witness questionable behavior by a Realtor?

Asked by Ruthless, 60558 Tue Sep 4, 2007

Please come up with your own examples ranging from just questionable to against the rules to unethical to potentially illegal.

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18
Deborah Madey’s answer
BEST ANSWER
If and when I see signs of behavior I consider simply unbecoming to agents, I generally ignore it. While it may disappoint me, if it does not pose a direct threat or danger to a consumer, I will not take any action. It is rare that I pick up the phone and call another broker to discuss an issue, but there is reason to so on occasion.

Frankly, I get annoyed at petty reporting of minor infractions. For example, I have witnessed a broker calling the police station to report the fact a competing broker placed a direction sign on a street corner in a municipality where such was probated. I haven't the time or inclination to participate in this nonsense activity.

Actions which are clearly illegal or pose danger to the public should be reported. Serious issues would justify a report made to the real estate commission.

I am an advocate of trying to resolve things directly and at a lower level first. Difficulties can arise from failed expectations and breakdown in communications. The first attempt at resolution should be with the agent or his/her broker. I have seen some posts on Trulia where the RE Pro recommended a report to a board attorney, an association or real estate commission. I have considered some of these recommendations unfounded based upon the limited info presented by the poster. Instead of bogging systems down unnecessarily, I recommend finding out more about the root of the problem. So often communication can go a long way in resolving a misinterpretation. A misunderstanding might be rectified in an afternoon absent the aggravation and time investment of escalation if not needed.

Unfortunately, in this, as in any industry, you will find those who are less scrupulous than others. I believe in recommending appropriate action based upon the infraction. Serious issues do belong at a high level, and perhaps directly to that level. The first course of action in most cases should be to contact the broker. Most brokers will make a serious effort. If that does not bring about resolution, contact the local board.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 5, 2007
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
MVP'08
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It doesn't matter where the cash comes from if there is no contingency. If the cash comes from a bank, it's still cash if there is no contingency.
Ruth
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558
MVP'08
IDFPR web site......................
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 29, 2008
Zoraida, as long as the buyers who made the cash offer were prepared to pay cash in the event the financing fell through, there's nothing wrong with them paying via financing. As Ruth pointed out, to the seller it's cash no matter where the money came from. If the buyers did not have the cash, that's another story, but you did not say that they did not have the money at all, it sounds like they just chose not to use it. I had buyers a few years who made an all cash offer and later decided that they wanted to use money from a HELOC instead. We disclosed the fact that they changed their mind, but they still close on time and were always ready and willing to use their cash if the HELOC had not been approved on time. Financing never became a contingency.
Web Reference: http://www.go2kw.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Ute Ferdig -…, Real Estate Pro in Newcastle, CA
MVP'08
Contact
This is not illegal.

Although in California contract, we usually ask for proof of funds within a certain period of days (normally 7 days). If the buyer could not show the cash to purchase, the seller can first request performance and then cancel the contract.

However, if the buyer is getting financing and looks like will be able to get that, I would think the sellers will just want the deal to go through and probably will not cancel because just it is not all cash. If the buyer removed all contingencies and could not come up with the cash, then they could lose the deposit.

This untruthful behavior might get sellers really nervous and upset, and may even cancel the contract, but Illegal, I don't think so. Money is money is money.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Sylvia Barry,…, Real Estate Pro in Novato, CA
MVP'08
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I see Ute ....Thanks..... FYI this situation just happen to one of our agents in the office............. a buyer put in a cash offer on a home and he too had a strong buyer ...... but the seller went with the cash offer well because of the obvious it was a cash offer.........he found out later that those buyers after they were accepted were getting financing, of course the seller was surprised.......
I dont know why I just mentioned that but I would think that maybe thats illegal....what do you think?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Cherin and others,
I held an inactive out of state Real Estate license from NC for almost ten years. The $35 per year was almost worth getting the newsletter with disciplinary actions. Every once in a while I'd see something interesting or someone I knew. But for the most part, the only way anyone would ever really get in trouble was co-mingling funds or not depositing Earnest Money.

Ruth
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558
MVP'08
Well I was reading some of the answers...... and maybe I am missing something here and its right under my nose.... :)

But the agents that played dual agency in my opinion didn't do anything illegal< I would think that maybe there was a variable in the listing agreement and maybe the seller only payed out 3% in comm as oppose to 5-6% because of the dual agency..... and since both the seller and the buyer have to agree 2x for dual agency ........ then why is that viewed as illegal or lost of credabilty or no integrity ... (sean and ute?) ( help maybe I am misunderstanding both of your answers.)

Ruth :) if you feel you have been wrong you can call or visit the the IDFPR.com website and put in a complaint and they will investigate ... over to the left of the screen ( professional regulations ) and navigate your way through.... hope this helped.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Oh thank goodness ( I usually don't use the word goodness, I just did not want to start a debate) guilt still works, or was it the song. It was the song right?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Mr.P, Other/Just Looking in Arizona
MVP'08
Thanks Carrie that makes me feel much better after Sylvia called me a sissy.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Mr.P, Other/Just Looking in Arizona
MVP'08
Unfortunately Ruth REALTORS tend to protect each other rather than stop unethical behavior. I serve on a Professional Standards Committee at the Texas Association of Realtors. We hear some really interesting stories. Usually commission based complaints, mis-handling of multiple offers or not fully representing their clients.

I believe if we are aware of or have reason to believe there is unethical behavior occuring we are supposed first supposed to notify our Broker.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Ruth, I haven't run into anything illegal, but we are required to report illegal activity to our broker. That's why the brokers name and either address or phone number are on all advertising and my email signature.

A few months ago, an agent created a "stealth website" that did not have this information available. When confronted, they changed the site to include it in very small print, which was legal. The agent tried to say it was always there. Of course, the information was not on a cached view of the website. So much for that agents reputation among piers. This was probably an honest mistake, but their actions spoke otherwise.

I would at least start with the agent, perhaps it was an honest mistake or error. If not, the next step is my office manager.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
You know Patrick, we tend to pick on those we love the most!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
So, Ruth, you know we have stories, but knowing you, you might have a reason for asking this. Why? Not Patrick, right? He is usually pretty nice :-) I don't want him to lose sleep.

But Patrick, no use hiding behind your broker all the time.

Sylvia
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Sylvia Barry,…, Real Estate Pro in Novato, CA
MVP'08
Contact
Why do I answer your questions?

I have wasted 20 minutes staring at your answer. I don`t get it.
You know I thought we were buds, pals, I`m from Chicago, you live in Chicago.
I thought we were like this( picture, fingers crossed).
However lately you have been picking on me. You think you`re really tough in that brick bungalow dont ya.

I am reporting you to my Broker.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Mr.P, Other/Just Looking in Arizona
MVP'08
Patrick, I think the grey is WHO you would report them to:
Confront the agent
Tell your broker
Board of Realtors
Licensing Board
others?
Ruth
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558
MVP'08
Please come up with your own examples ranging from just questionable to against the rules to unethical to potentially illegal.

No it is black or white there is no grey
Report Him or Her to your Broker.
Ba Bye
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Mr.P, Other/Just Looking in Arizona
MVP'08
Report Him or Her to your Broker.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 4, 2007
Mr.P, Other/Just Looking in Arizona
MVP'08
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