Home Buying in Saint Louis>Question Details

Holly Kennedy, Real Estate Pro in Arnold, MO

I am a licensed realtor and in my situation I was representing the buyer, the agent on the other side never gave me a rejected counter offer

Asked by Holly Kennedy, Arnold, MO Thu Feb 7, 2013

but she informed me they were insulted at our offer, I have to do my due diligence to my client, so my question is, can she get into trouble for not getting me the offers and not responding to my emails, calls, texts, etc?

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No, the contract expired. Had a similar situation recently in that the lsting agent never got back to me. Sometimes they want you to call. I never called in this situation and we decided to just let it expire. Two days go by and the agent contacts me and asked if we would make another offer. We did, gave them a shorter time to respond and at a much lower price of the original offer. It worked and my clients saved some money. I do not always recommend this because each situation is different. But I certainly would not take your experience personal. I do understand how frustrating it can be, but the best thing to do is move on and hopefully find your buyer something else. I hope this helped.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
State rules are different, I'm sure. In Missouri, we can let the offer expire without physically responding with a written response.

If you are doubting the agent presented the offer, you are within professional rights to request to see the offer with a rejected signature.

It's unprofessional not unethical, but she doesn't have to respond to your offer, emails, calls, texts.

Best wishes.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
The seller can respond to an offer by:

accepting it
rejecting it on paper
countering it

They can also respond by rejecting it by their inaction so it dies. Which is what they appear to have done in this case.

The agent on the other side may be very busy. This may be your only deal, but she may have 20+ listing and a dozen buyers she's working with. She gave you her client's answer and her job with you is done. She is representing her clients, she is not representing your clients. She does not legally have to explain her client's decision to not respond to your offer at all. She was being kind when she let you know that they were insulted by the offer.

I had one come in earlier this year on a darling house in a great neighborhood. The buyers started out 40,000 lower than the list price of $150,000 and insulted the sellers, but the sellers did respond with a counter. After a couple counters back and forth where the buyers inched up, the sellers got tired of playing the game and what they felt was wasting their time dealing with the counters so they rejected the next one. A few weeks later the buyers came back at the point that it had ended before and started inching up again counter by counter. This time the sellers did one counter then told the buyers no. A month later the buyers came back at list price. By that time the sellers were so irritated by the buyers they refused to deal with the offer - they felt the buyer was trying to buy in a neighborhood above their price range and they would try to nickel and dime the building inspection as a result. If the buyers had started out where they had ended at, they would be living in the home now.

I would highly recommend that you sit down with your buyers and show them the current stats for the area. Most of the greater St Louis area is now in a SELLERS market. There are fewer homes on the market than there are buyers trying to buy them. The buyers are having issues finding homes as a result. We are still seeing buyers lowballing their offers, and many aren't taking the time (or their agent isn't taking the time) to seriously look at the comps and consider CONDITION - they try to do comps against distressed properties (estates being sold as is, short sales, foreclosures, etc) rather than equivalent properties. I don't care if the foreclosure was totally renovated, it was still a distressed property, not a regular sale. The buyers have to consider how the seller priced their home. Did they price it high? Did they price it correctly for it's condition, amenities, and location or did they already lowball themselves because they want to get it sold?

How did you present the offer? DId you make sure that your buyers have a REAL preapproval letter - not one that is total junk because it says "they can buy the home at XYZ street" but doesn't give the dollar amount (for all the listing agent can tell they might be able to buy the home for one dollar, but they can't afford to buy the home at list price in which case they shouldn't be looking at it), no interest rate (listing agents check to see if the interest rate is reasonable in which case it means they have decent credit and down payment, or if it's really high, it's a big tip off that they have lousy credit and most likely it will never get to closing). Did you ask for items to be left that are personal property?

I noted in the answers here someone suggested sending the comps to show the listing agent and the seller that they are overpriced. Quite frankly I see that backfire more than help in the St Louis area. The listing agent has done the comps and if the agent is decent is checking them periodically, if it's overpriced she knows it and she doesn't need you to tell her that, but as we all know the seller sets the price, not the agent. When you send comps over you are telling the agent that she hasn't done her job correctly and you are insulting the seller. Worse is telling them that your client would have to update the kitchen with granite and high end appliances so they can't possibly pay the list price. What your clients want to do with the home after they buy it, is their concern, it does not impact the value of the home in it's present condition, with it's present amenities and in it's present location. The value of the home is based strictly on the value of the home, it is NEVER based on improvements the buyer wants to make to it.

In addition, please note that if you are sending a chain email and you don't change the subject line, in some email programs it can be very difficult to recognize that a new email in the chaing has arrived. Do you know that the other agent texts (not all agents do and some have limited texting plans) ? Do you know that the agent is still in town and hasn't gone on vacation or isn't sick with one of the bugs that is going around?

I would suggest that you sit down with your broker to discuss the situation
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
Ted, Greg, Jackie, Catherine, Gina and Paul are on target. You did get a response but didn't recognize it.
This can be the outcome when submitting offers that can be perceived as offensive. YOU must prepare your buyer for such an outcome and the consequences imposed on future dialog.
It would be well advised not to become 'identified' with insulting purchase offers. Your email will be the last one opened if at all. When you call to advise an offer is coming, do you hear a groan?
Now, if along with your offer you are submitting justification for the offer, you know, real comps, it is unlikely the offer will be ignored by everyone." My buyer looks for property that can be purchased at 40% of tax value" is not justification.
Many investor types operate on the 40 to 1 plan. That means on 1 offer in 40 will be accepted. This also means the only one spending time and money is the real estate agent. The seminar that teaches this method DEPENDS on agents with sugar plums in their eyes. Don't be that agent.
NOTE: I do pay to attend these seminars. When you can identify the warning flags it is easier to avoid the traps.
Best of success to you,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, FL,
Movie Tour
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
Thanks Ted but to be honest this agent is so unprofessional and unkind I would not ever want to work with her
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
what about for not coming back to us and giving us the chance to come back higher? Wouldn't this go against code of ethics?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
I would submit an improved offer to start dialogue again. The only responsibility the Listing agent has is to submit your offer to their Seller.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
It is always good practice for your client to receive the rejection in writing from the other agent. It is an agent's responsibility to abide by all timelines in an offer. If an agent cannot meet those timelines it needs to be communicated to all parties, and agreed by all parties. Otherwise, the contract can expire.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
It is a dead contract once it goes past the acceptance date. I would always call the other agent and tell them that the offer is too low, I would never just not respond at all. I did this once because the family was out of town and did not have easy access to a fax machine but normally I would always counter, even if it was still at full price. You should never just ignore a contract - it's better to try to work it out - you never know!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 8, 2013
If the seller did not respond to the binding acceptance date on your contract the offer is out of contract basically null & void.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 7, 2013
not really, the offer technically died at the expiration of the counter offer. with no response, it should have flagged you that either a better offer was in play or they just did not want to play the game. I am finding that these times are coming back. I sent an offer that expired at 10 pm. they have yet to respond to us and we offered full price. OR it says more about the listing agent. For me, I will always get my clients to respond, regardless of feelings hurt, it is business, not personal : )
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 7, 2013
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