However, five years is a long time, Bates. We can't adjudicate this for you, but I think that by now, a decent attorney would be able to defend that agent simply because memories fade and details disappear.
I suggest you move on, put the past behind you, and just go out and buy a home!
All the best,
There are numerous variables that can effect a transaction including if the proposed offer doesn't meet the requirements the seller has set forth in their listing agreement with the agent representing them or if one buyer appears to be better able to perform...more likely to successfully close...on their contract even if it's a lower offer. Contrary to popular belief, the highest offer isn't always the strongest and there are a myriad of factors in addition to price that a proficient sellers agent will advise their client about including the buyers choice of lender (i.e. is it a reputable local lender with a proven track record of working well with the local real estate community & has local representatives who are easily contacted and are familiar with local issues that can be the difference between a smooth transaction and one not being funded when you get to the closing table or is it some national company with no local office that ALSO does loans in addition to a myriad of other things not familiar with local issues and customs with no one person taking responsibility for...or being paid based on...the success or failure of the transaction), the amount of seller concessions and closing costs (if any) requested from the seller by the buyer, whether the closing date proposed meets the seller's needs and schedule, etc., etc.
That said, first some clarification of how Colorado differs from many states. All real estate license holders in the state of Colorado are Brokers and there are 3 levels of license holders: Broker Associates, who work underneath an Employing Broker...their first 2 years by requirement like an apprentice and after their 2nd year by choice... or after 2 years they can become and Independent Broker working on their own for their own company but not employing any additional Broker Associates or, with some additional education requirements, they can become an Employing Broker who can have additional Broker Associates working underneath them if they so choose. If the seller's agent you dealt with is a Broker Associate, then you have the option of taking the issue up with their Employing Broker of their Company. If they are an Independent Broker you have to move on to other options.
In addition to the vague circumstances presented in your question the answer you are looking for is complicated by a couple other issues. First is the fact that only about 1/2 of all the real estate license holders in Colorado are Realtors who are Members of the National, State and Local Associations of Realtors and thereby governed by the Realtor Code of Ethics (http://www.realtor.org/mempolweb.nsf/pages/code). If the selling agent was a Realtor, then it may be possible for you to file a grievance with the local board of Realtors depending on the circumstances and facts involved. In the Colorado Springs area this is the Pikes Peak Association of Realtors.
Additionally, in the State of Colorado, ALL real estate license holders, regardless of whether they are a Realtor or just a real estate licensee come under the governance of State Law, the Colorado Division of Real Estate & Colorado Real Estate Commission. If you believe that the agent representing the seller violated their duty to present all written offers to the seller and have evidence of that fact, then you have the option of filing a complaint with the Colorado Real Estate Commission who will investigate the complaint and transaction. Should the investigator find that the broker indeed violated Commission rules and/or Colorado law, the broker could be subject to disciplinary action including reprimand, fines, license revocation and could even be referred for additional legal action.
To avoid such unpleasant issues in the future it would be advisable for you to find an experienced, full time Realtor Professional who continuously invests their time and money in their professional development and education to represent your best interests.
Brian L. A. Wess
RealtorÂ®, Broker Owner
CRS, GRI, ABR, ASR, CSR, CNS, SFR, e-PRO
Military Relocation, Residential & Investment Specialist
Infinite Horizons Realty - Metro Brokers
Colorado Springs, CO
COLORADO REAL ESTATE...DONE RIGHT!â„¢
If your offer was in writing and complete with all components, preapproval etc. and you believe that it was not submitted to the seller then yes, you have a valid complaint. Suggest you start by contacting the agent's broker/manager.
One tool that I've used that you might want to use next go around is to include a confirmation that summarizes the terms of your offer, to be signed by the seller confirming receipt.
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There are too many questions that are not answered here, and most of these don't seem to be ones that can be positively answered correctly by you, unless the deal has already closed.
Agreed that all offers do have to be submitted to the Seller, as per the Listing Agreement, but if there has been an accepted offer, and if the Seller has instructed the Listing Agent to not accept any further offers, then the Listing Agent is under no obligation to present any further offers.