Home Buying in Norwalk>Question Details

earanda25, Home Buyer in Norwalk, CA

is this legal? selling agent wants a signing bonus of $1500.00 for keys to our new purchased home ( short sale?)

Asked by earanda25, Norwalk, CA Mon Jan 14, 2013

We are almost at the end of a short sale. Keys will be given to us in a few day. But was told that the sellers agent (of the short sale) will not give us the keys unless we give a signing bonus of $1500.00 now our realtor never told us this. Is this legal?
, 5 months to process and finish. Deposit was already paid to escrow company and now this?

Help the community by answering this question:


Hi Earanda,

Have your agent go over the contract that you signed, not a new one, and see where it stipulates that you would pay the signing bonus.

If its not in the contract, report the listing agent (seller's agent) to the California Department of Real Estate http://(www.dre.ca.gov), and file a complaint the the listing agent's broker, unless the agent is the broker.
You should also file a complaint with the short sale bank, and finally, talk to an attorney, because you may have other legal options available to you.

I reiterate, look at the contract that you signed first. Maybe, you did agree with the signing bonus. You will find out when you look at your contract.

It's is why it is imperative that realtors always go over the contract with their clients, instead of just pointing "sign here, initial here, done."

Douglas Lagos
Realtor®, Certified HAFA Specialist (CHS)
DRE# 01921046
Coldwell Banker Residential
Tel. (310) 463-8088 http://www.douglaslagos.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
All monies for the transaction should flow through escrow and be reflected on the HUD1. After checking your agreement, if you do owe this make sure it is handled correctly.
Good luck,
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
Wow! The nerve of some people. If you did not agree to that in writing anywhere in the contract, then I would pursue a complaint to the Dept of Real Estate. Keep any emails or paper trails that would or could be used as evidence in your complaint. It sounds as if the Listing agent forgot to ask that you the buyer or your agent to pitch in on the short sale negotiators fee. Now that it has come down to the end , they are trying to re-coup some of the expenses. I would file a complaint whether you resolve this issue or not.

All the best,

Alex Montelongo/Broker
Coldwell Banker Star Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jul 9, 2013
I think other agents mention this: revised your contract with your agent and ask them to point out where is it agreed to the $1500? It’s very important to ask your agents to explain the contract in detail when signing. If you didn’t agree to that you can file a complaint with the DRE dept.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 30, 2013
You have to read the contract and addendums you signed. Hopefully you read before signing and understood what was being asked or required of you as the buyer. This is unusual. The listing agent should be getting paid from the seller. The sellers bank would approve the sale and does allow for a listing agent to be paid a fair commission. Your choices are to review your contract, if you do not see it you may want to contact a lawyer or file a complaint with the state real estate commission if the agent is violating state law.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
I would ask your Realtor to show you where you signed agreeing to this.
As others stated, if it was not agreed upon in writing..it's not legal.
You definitely can turn to your agents broker for help.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
Is it in the contract of one of the short sale addendums? If so, you need to comply. If not, then no, they can't just throw that at you.

Recheck all the paperwork carefully, OK?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
Wow, that does not sound right to me at all unless you agreed to it up front AND it must be in writing. I certainly would call his/her broker and let them know what they are trying to do. If this was not agreed upon, this agent really needs to be talked to by his broker. This type of behavior is UNACCEPTABLE if it was not agreed upon. He/she is already making their commission. And, like I mentioned if it was not agreed upon in writing, this is illegal.

Call his/her broker ASAP!

Joan Patterson, B.A., G.R.I., Realtor, License #01431647
Keller Williams Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
The way you outlined it, this is extortion:
You should talk to that Agent's Broker and express your displeasure;
I would bet that the Broker does not know about this.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
Hi earanda25,

You need to read EVERYTHING you signed. If there is nothing in writing signed by ALL parties, you do no have to pay the $1500. Talk to your Realtor and if they won't assist you, contact their Broker who actually 'owns' the contract.

Good luck.

Shanna Rogers
SR Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 14, 2013
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