Home Selling in 10013>Question Details

Pablo Diego, Home Seller in New York, NY

I am in a dispute with my sellers regarding the “listing period” for a Listing Agreement contract

Asked by Pablo Diego, New York, NY Fri Dec 5, 2008

they claim we agreed to a 3-month “listing period” and I thought we agreed to a 9 month period…when they originally signed the contract, I mistakenly left the “listing period” blank and didn’t leave them with their copy of the contract…when they realized they never got a copy of their contact (about a month after it was listed), they asked for it and I gave it to them…however, I filled in the listing period of 9 months after the fact, and they claim that we specifically agreed to a 3 month listing…they’re telling me that they want to cancel the listing unless I correct the “listing period” to 3 months…Am I allowed to fill in whatever “listing period” I want if they sign the contract? They are accusing me of fraud, they tell me when they signed the contract that we specifically agreed to 3 month period and that it was fraudulent for me to write in a 9-month period after the fact…who is right here?

Help the community by answering this question:


It is against your code of ethics and DOS to not leave a copy of the contract.
It is against your code of ethics and DOS to fill in information after the fact..

They are correct in accusing you of unethical behavior and they can report you to the DOS.

Get some education and learn your profession. Ignorance is no excuse...you could be in HUGE trouble.
Put the listing date to whatever they say it should be..."the customer is always right..." and start learning your trade before you make us all look bad.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
Forget the ethics complaint- that would be the tip of the iceberg.
It's not legal to alter a contract without the intials of the party being affected- that this thought even occurred to you is just scary, frankly. Scarier still is that you'd imagine that these people are somehow bound by your own bad judgement- cut them loose, and hope that the only outcome is a seller relieved to have you out of the picture.
Web Reference: http://optionsrealty.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 20, 2008
The client is always right. Do you really want a client who does not trust you and feels like you were deceptive with them, whether you were or not? They will share their experience with others, do your best to make it a good experience.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
If you did not return a copy of the agreement then you don't have an exclusive at all. Be happy they are willing to do 3 Mos, work hard, hopefully sell it and show them how good a job you are doing if it is not sold so you can get a renewal.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 1, 2014
Your exclusive is not valid as you did not return a copy to them fully executed.
If they will continue at 3 Mos count your blessings and go overboard to do a great job.
You have already blown trust, I think (sorry) you need to go back to Selling 101
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 20, 2008
As Vice Chairman of The Professional Standards Committee of The Long Island Board of Realtors, I would suggest you revisit the meaning of the fiduciary relationship of your agreement with the sellers and the Realtor Code of Ethics. You are leaving yourself open to a ethics complaint. The Seller could file against you and your sponsoring broker. In my opinion you should acknowledge that you made a mistake and learn from it. Walk away from the listing and next time make sure the documents that you give your Client are filled out correctly.

Douglas Montgomery
HomeNY Corp.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 12, 2008
You might want to review NYS Real estate law..I've posted the link below..Here is an excerpt:
§175.12 Delivering duplicate original of instrument
A real estate broker shall immediately deliver a duplicate original of any instrument to any party or parties executing the same, where such instrument has been prepared by such broker or under his supervision and where such instrument relates to the employment of the broker or to any matters pertaining to the consummation of a lease, or the purchase, sale or exchange of real property or any other type of real estate transaction in which he may participate as a broker.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 10, 2008
Are you the seller or the listing agent? I'm astonished that your broker and brokerage accepted a listing with no listing term! Are you a licensed real estate agent? I'm not an attorney and can't give you legal advice but not giving them a copy of their contract was unprofessional..You should be happy that they are willing to list it with you for 3 months! I would sincerely apologize and tell them that you made a mistake..(Did the 3 look like a 9 to you in your notes?? How did this all happen?) You might offer to cancel the listing and as others have suggested offer to have someone else in your office take over..Another thought is to have your broker speak to them directly..(A similar thing happened to me as an agent but in my case it was the broker who had me sign an agreement as to a trial period and training in which I was told I had to do part-time training classes for 3 weeks, I was made to sign paperwork while distracted, never given a copy and later told my training period was 3 months! When I got a copy the time period was filled in after the fact! ) Always get a copy of anything you sign as soon as you sign it or asap and if someone won't, just tear it up! (There are always Kinko's)The right way is to have duplicate contracts prepared in advance and later deliver copies of those signed copies too..Your broker is the one who ought to be handling this! You have to tell them about it because you could be jeopardizing everyone's livelihood and reputation in your real estate agency/brokerage
Web Reference: http://joliemuss.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 10, 2008
Shouldn't you be under Real Estate Agent and not HOme Seller Pablo?
Anyway, since you decided to hide your identity and I can't blame you for doing so, you screwed up my friend.
Just so you know for future reference. A seller can cancel a contract with you at any time if they feel like you haven't done everything which you have promised or if they simply think your work for them was not satisfactory.
Standard agreements are for 6 months, instead of trying to push what you "THINK" happened, why wouldn't you bring up 6 months and meet somewhere in the middle with them?
There are many ways of going about this. How do you wait a month before even remembering to send them a copy?
Instead of causing any problems for your self, do as they ask or drop them as a client. Apologize as much as you can and hand them over to a professional broker in your own firm and have that broker pay you a referral fee if they ever make a sale.

Good Luck to you. Have a check list next time of steps you should be taking when taking a listing, this way nothing gets missed.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 6, 2008
I'm with Gail. She summarized it all too well.......
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 6, 2008
You should find another line of work!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
I like Gails answer.
You can't even be serious asking if you can fill in whatever you want after they sign it. Are you kidding me?!?!?!
I think that you should let them cancel the contract until, well, forever. Or at least until you go through some intense real estate, morality, and common sence training.

There is a broker in charge(i hope) use them to teach you, or find someone who will train you as you go.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
SORRY TO HEAR THIS, it could be your best interest to locate another listing agent at this time it could be a conflict of interest off of the words exchanged between you both. Fill in 9 months should have been reconfirmed with the listing agents many agents dont want a listing that may last that long. Perhaps they see after 3 months if they not sold your home best for seller locate another agent.
Web Reference: http://www.lynn911.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
Not you can't fill in whatever you want do it for 3 months, if you do a good job they will stick with you and re-list the other option is them suing you and you would loss. Ethics Ethics Ethics.....
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008

This is obviously a legal issue that needs to be refered to an attorney. From a non-legal perspective there seems to be several issues of concern going all the way back to leaving the listing period blank and not providing the customers with a copy of the agreement.

What does your broker say about this situation? There are clearly mistakes here....the issue, at this point, is identifying a course of action to resolve the problem.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 5, 2008
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