Is it ethical for a dual agent to remove from the MLS a listing with with a contingency offer? Or should the listing be noted as pending?

Asked by Dave, Denver, CO Sat Mar 31, 2012

An elderly neighbor has a pending offer on her house. The house has been taken off the MLS. This is not a short sale. We suspect, since the agent is representing both parties, this may be a way to insure a full commission, since no other agents can make an offer. Is she being taken advantage of?

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Robert McGuire’s answer
Robert McGui…, Agent, Denver, CO
Sat Mar 31, 2012
Hi Dave,

It is a good thing that you are looking out for your neighbor. I looked at Nicci's answer below before replying to your question. She said the same things I wanted to address. I would not assume that there is wrong doing at this point. There is another option where the listing agent can continue to represent the Seller and treat the buyer as a 'customer'. We wouldn't know how this is being handled without seeing the listing contract and the contract for sale. Please know that most ethical Realtors are honest and reputable and looking out for the best for their clients while trying to negotiate a 'win-win' scenario for all parties involved. I know of few Realtors who would shut down the processes in order to 'insure a full commission'. A good Realtor is one of the most honest and reputable people you will find. If there is a bad apple or an intentional wrong doing by a particular agent we all want to know and have it addressed by the Colorado Real Estate Commission at the DORA link in Nicci's post. Hope this all works out for the best and thanks again for being such a good neighbor.

Robert McGuire ASR
Your Castle Real Estate
1776 S. Jackson St. #412
Denver CO 80210
Direct – 303-669-1246
1 vote
Chris Behrens, Agent, Denver, CO
Sat Mar 31, 2012

I agree with both Nina and Nicci ... and its nice of you to look out for your neighbor!

Chris Behrens
New Era Realty,Inc.
1 vote
Nicci Hyatt, Agent, Denver, CO
Sat Mar 31, 2012
Dave - Nina's answer below is very helpful. I would wonder, though, how are you accessing the MLS - only brokers have access to the actual MLS. Many public websites that get their data from the MLS, if a property is Under Contract, it will no longer show on thos public websites at all. On Metrolist, our local MLS, we are only to use Pending status in a very particular circumstances, otherwise "Under Contract" is the correct notation whether or not there are contingencies, and that may be why you are not seeing it on public websites. If you want to send me the address, I can pull the full listing history for you and send to you as a PDF, which could help her to udnerstand her true status and/or help in any communication with her broker and/or complaint if there has been any wrongdoing.
1 vote
Nina Kuhl, Agent, Denver, CO
Sat Mar 31, 2012
In Colorado, real estate brokers can not be dual agent but they can be a transaction broker (they can represent both parties but they are not a specific advocate for either party). If there is an offer on the property and it has been accepted but has a contingency, then it should show as pending or undercontract and not be removed from the MLS. The seller has an option to still accept offers if there is a contingency. You can contact the Dept of Regulatory Agencies (DORA). Here is a link where you can lodge a formal complaint -> You also may want to talk to the homeowner and make sure they are aware of the situation.

Nina Kuhl
c: 303-913-5858
Cherry Creek Properties, LLC
1 vote
Ron Rovtar, Agent, Boulder, CO
Tue Apr 10, 2012
Hi Dave: There is some very good information below. However, it can be very hard to make an ethical judgment about a professional without hearing the professional's reasons for a particular action.

I would mention that the Multiple Listing Services have very specific rules about the reasons one can include or remove a listing. If there is a question about such an action, contacting the MLS may be a way to get it answered and resolve the situation.

Ron Rovtar
0 votes
stephen holb…, Agent, denver, CO
Sun Apr 1, 2012
Ms. Kuhl's answer is the right one.
0 votes
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