Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
User avatar
goingup
Posts: 4155
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 1:02 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by goingup »

J295 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:10 am You asked why the agent might be doing this, and noted two possibilities.

A reasonable guess based on limited facts is that the agent is inefficient, overwhelmed, or perhaps not customer oriented. A less charitable description would be lazy.

You are wise to want to see the full offers. Terms other than price can be material.
A remote possibility is a corrupt agent. It happened to us. In the 90's, our first home and we had moved out of state. Local agent engineered a "sweetheart" deal with a relative. We were told there was only one offer, which happened to match the number I had stated as the lowest we'd take. We flew back to check on the property before accepting the offer, to find out that someone had ripped out wallpaper and had begun renovations.

It's important to remember that not every acts in your best interest. The most likely explanation is incompetence, but occasionally it is something more.
hachiko
Posts: 228
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:56 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hachiko »

celia wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:34 am
hachiko wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:15 pm Your agent would not be permitted to enter into a contract on your behalf to not disclose the name to you unless you explicitly granted that authority. And if they aren't an attorney, that's getting dangerously close to the unauthorized practice of law.
I recently sold a property in another state while I didn't live there. I never saw the buyer's name until we both had to sign the same closing escrow papers and I had to sign the deed.
And if a celebrity doesn't want it known who is buying the house, why do you think they would trust a listing agent to keep that secret? Why wouldn't they just buy through an agent/ lawyer/ trust/ entity?
Maybe that's what one bidder is doing.
And your agent entered into an agreement with the buyer to not disclose the buyer's identity to you? Or you just never asked for the documents/ identity of the buyer? The two are very different.
mrmass
Posts: 525
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2018 6:35 pm
Location: MA

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by mrmass »

I'll add the standard issue Bogleheads disclaimer so you don't sue me. I am not an attorney, I am not a RE Agent, I know nothing.

Okay with that out of the way, I would think the agent needs to present all offers. It's your decision not theirs.
User avatar
jfn111
Posts: 1279
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2013 10:42 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by jfn111 »

The agent should be doing what the client wants. If my clients want the offers, I send them the offers. If they want a summary, I send them a summary. It's not that difficult unless your like my California clients that wanted everything faxed. :oops:
User avatar
leeks
Posts: 1151
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 4:33 pm
Location: virginia

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by leeks »

Has the OP seen the offers yet? The clock is ticking...
hachiko
Posts: 228
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:56 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hachiko »

Shackleton wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:26 am Another data point, I’ve only sold 2 houses, both in CO, and both times we were emailed the full offers. This allowed us to accept, reject, or counter directly in the docusign-type application. I would never accept a summary from my real estate agent.

Also, people should remember that Realtor is a registered trademark and only RE agents that are licensed and are members of NAR are required to follow the Realtor ethics. So all Realtors are RE agents, but not all RE agents are Realtors. https://www.realtor.com/advice/buy/what ... on-broker/

There may be local laws that a RE agent must follow and you can look those up by your state.
The state doesn't matter except maybe Louisiana, I have no idea what they do there. It's basic agency law. The listing agent is your agent. They are obligated to provide you with information they obtain on your behalf (i.e., offers, letters, information in passing, etc) if you specifically ask. Where the state may matter is whether they are required to provide it to you if you don't ask.
User avatar
hand
Posts: 1689
Joined: Sun May 17, 2009 8:42 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hand »

mhalley wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 4:40 pm I am no expert, but isn’t it the realtors job to examine all the offers and present the best one to you? Why are you trying to micromanage them? I’ve never actually sold a home,only bought so I am ignorant in this area.
Just because a realtor works for you (and even if they say they have a fiduciary duty to you) doesn't mean they aren't incented to put their own interests first (e.g. minimizing the amount of work they do, pushing you to close the best financial deal for them, pushing you to use vendors that provide them kickbacks or are known to provide "good" answers to help close the deal.)

While there are undoubtedly some really good realtors out there who put their clients first and are in it for the long term, many more realtors are busy doing *whatever* it takes to survive the year.

It behooves a savvy seller or buyer to tightly manage the process to make sure their own needs are properly represented.
rooms222
Posts: 642
Joined: Fri Feb 22, 2013 2:12 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by rooms222 »

I think the real estate agent is trying to limit fair housing liability risk. With that said, state law may be different about presenting offers, and there can be a conflict.

This blog post gets into the potential conflict between state law and real estate law and practice to present all offers (and attachments) and violating fair housing laws.

https://www.sloanlawfirm.com/real-estat ... en-affair/

Here is further information about the case he discusses where, when the seller saw that the name on the offer was made by a woman named Ebony, they withdrew their agreement to sell because of race, after the seller made further inquiries:

https://www.thewesterlysun.com/daily-ne ... b9cda.html

NAR discussion of the case, and link to the complaint:
https://www.nar.realtor/fair-housing-co ... by-sellers

The case is in discovery after being transferred to Federal court in Rhode Island from Massachusetts. https://www.pacermonitor.com/public/cas ... dick_et_al

Further info:

https://www.mercurynews.com/2021/03/27/ ... questions/

https://www.nar.realtor/fair-housing-co ... ty-letters
User avatar
LilyFleur
Posts: 1983
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2018 10:36 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by LilyFleur »

Weird. And not acceptable.

The last time I sold a property, we had three offers over selling price. My agent came over to present the offers, discuss contingencies, show me evidence of their down payment, loan pre-approvals, personal letters from the prospective buyers, etc. She presented everything, explained everything, and then listened to what I had to say.

Your agent works for you and looks out for your best interest, and I'm assuming they will be earning a commission for their work. I like to work collaboratively with people like my real estate agents and my attorneys.

It's fair to tell your agent what you expect, and then call the broker if this is not forthcoming.
RubyTuesday
Posts: 905
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2012 11:24 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by RubyTuesday »

valleyrock wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:49 pm
stan1 wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:13 pm
valleyrock wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:09 pm I was astonished to learn after the fact that offers to buy a family house included letters from the people making the offers. In the midst of the negotiations, these letters might have been helpful to me in evaluating the offers and negotiating. But my agent never mentioned these letters in which people gave reasons for wanting the house.

I suspect this happened out of laziness. If the letters were passed on to me, the agent would have had to read them.
Nope likely not laziness, it is most likely "on advice of legal counsel" or "against my brokerage's policies" (which also is on advice of legal counsel).
valleyrock wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:09 pm One lesson here might be to add in language to the contract with an brokerage firm that they will promptly provide all information from bidders, to include all offers, contingencies, letters, etc.
Varies by states, but many states use a standard contract template with minimal changes not bespoke custom contracts.

Some people are probably best off FSBO with their attorney, others don't want to do that.
Sure, agents all use the same contract, but there's always a place to add things at the end. If it's something they're required to do anyway, they might should be fine with it, and now it's basically underlined.

Why would it be improper or illegal for an agent to provide letters accompany offers to the sellers? Can't sellers know the names of people making the offers, anyway.. they'll see names on the offers, of course. Unless it's a corporation. Companies are snapping up real estate.
You open yourself up to discrimination reading letters.

For example, one letter says something about “imagining their kids by the fireplace at Christmas” and the other letter says “me and my partner look forward to walking to our synagogue.”

Read those, pick a winner and invite a lawsuit.
“Doing nothing is better than being busy doing nothing.” – Lao Tzu
User avatar
ResearchMed
Posts: 12063
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2008 11:25 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by ResearchMed »

hachiko wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:15 pm If your agent has information that would allow you to sell the property for more, not only are they most certainly obligated to tell you, they are incentived to tell you.
If only it were this easy...

As some have already suggested in the current case, and definitely in some other cases, there can be a real difference between what gets the *seller* the most money and what gets the seller's *agent* the most money.

If a seller's agent has an offer where they get both sides of the commission (e.g., if there is no "buyer agent" involved to split that commission), then it would not be in the agent's "best own financial interest" to present an offer with shared commission that is just slightly above an offer with no shared commission.
And that is one of the biggies, although ethically it shouldn't be.
And that might well be what is going on here, but not necessarily.

But in terms of other "potential issues", albeit not necessarily in this situation, one is that because the agent gets a rather small percentage of the total selling price, it may not be "worth it to the agent" to spend more time/effort trying to get a "small/modest amount more" for the seller. If the agent could find or negotiate an offer with another, say, $100k, then the agent would get somewhere in the $2,000 - $6,000 more (less some costs, or even only a part of that if shared with a broker). But the seller would have gotten something like $94,000 - $98,000 more. That IS a difference! And for a price of even $25k or $10k extra, it's even less financially lucrative for the agent to spend the extra time, but the seller would still have benefited nicely.

I'm surprised there aren't some sliding scales, such as "... or 10% [or 20%..., etc.] of anything over $XXXX" put into the selling contract.
I'm not even sure if that is legal (?).
When I looked into this, it seemed that any "side arrangement" might be a violation of something (e.g., realtor ethics rules?), perhaps *unless* disclosed to the buyers. I'm not quite sure why, or why it would be a problem to disclose such an arrangement to buyers. (But I am not a real estate sales professional.)

And finally, one apparently major reason NOT to disclose those letters and photos is that those can be a time bomb waiting for a discrimination case to be filed by some upset prospective-but-unsuccessful buyer. Didn't get the property? Learn that the buyer was in fact in some "potentially more attractive category" than yourself? (That could be ethnic, age, family status, etc.; there are quite a few "protected classes".)
Whammo... lawsuit time. Or at least on the seller/seller's agent side, the fear of such a lawsuit later.
Hence, NO disclosures about such characteristics of the buyers.

Yup, that means NOT learning that a prospective buyer *really* wanted children to go to those top-rated schools, the ones that may have meant so much to you, the seller, for your own family when you were buying some years ago! Or perhaps that a prospective buyer *really* wanted to live in that "gay friendly neighborhood" or "nice mixed race neighborhood". And those are indeed types of reasons that might matter to some buyers... and could lead to a nice lawsuit in certain cases... or "just" the worry about one, by the seller/seller's agent.

All fine, unless/until that buyer didn't get the property and suspected - or just "wanted to claim" - that the property was sold to someone else because of some related issue...

The "best price or strategy" is not necessarily identical for seller and agent, although in most cases, they are indeed the same.

RM
This signature is a placebo. You are in the control group.
Supergrover
Posts: 70
Joined: Tue Jan 12, 2021 3:15 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Supergrover »

goingup wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:41 am
J295 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:10 am You asked why the agent might be doing this, and noted two possibilities.

A reasonable guess based on limited facts is that the agent is inefficient, overwhelmed, or perhaps not customer oriented. A less charitable description would be lazy.

You are wise to want to see the full offers. Terms other than price can be material.
A remote possibility is a corrupt agent. It happened to us. In the 90's, our first home and we had moved out of state. Local agent engineered a "sweetheart" deal with a relative. We were told there was only one offer, which happened to match the number I had stated as the lowest we'd take. We flew back to check on the property before accepting the offer, to find out that someone had ripped out wallpaper and had begun renovations.

It's important to remember that not every acts in your best interest. The most likely explanation is incompetence, but occasionally it is something more.
Not to wander off topic....but please tell me how you handled that!!
nalor511
Posts: 1520
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:00 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by nalor511 »

demdeah26 wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 7:21 pm
BillWalters wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 5:02 pm I remain astonished this industry hasn’t been disrupted.
Are you kidding? Redfin and several other listing sites have exploded in recent years to facilitate FSBO or avoidance of realtors.

And OP, I would politely ask (demand) all offers in full by end of night along with an explanation why they are giving any hassle about that. If your agent doesn’t produce both I would fire him, contact the brokerage, all while trying to avoid paying him anything once you accept the best offer.
Redfin used to be (mildly) disruptive, but now all they do is refer you to a local "partner agent". Real estate is still waiting patiently for disruption. Which is surprising, since there is 2.5-3% of sale price (buyer side commission) sitting there waiting for the right company to come along and *actually* make the process easier/better.
User avatar
celia
Posts: 12990
Joined: Sun Mar 09, 2008 6:32 am
Location: SoCal

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by celia »

bsteiner wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:27 am
celia wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:34 am I recently sold a property in another state while I didn't live there. I never saw the buyer's name until we both had to sign the same closing escrow papers and I had to sign the deed.
And if a celebrity doesn't want it known who is buying the house, why do you think they would trust a listing agent to keep that secret? Why wouldn't they just buy through an agent/ lawyer/ trust/ entity?
Maybe that's what one bidder is doing.
How did you sign the contract without seeing the name of the other party to the contract?
I just pulled up the digital copy of the purchase agreement. All parties (including agents) signed electronically using AuthentiSign. There are digital initialized spots all over the margins, but at the bottom, there are signature lines. The buyer signed by hand, but it is not legible. But the name is typed next to it. I was signing as a trustee with ", trustee" after my name. So the buyer doesn't see who I represent, just "<celia>, trustee". (The typed "Name of Seller" is blank, either because of an oversight or because the trust name is long and very little of it would fit on the line.) So, I will give you that I can see their name, but if they had represented a trust, I might not know who is really buying it.
A celebrity could buy through an LLC or a trust of which someone else is the trustee, though most celebrities don't seem to care that (or perhaps are happy that) their names are in the public records.
I think they care a lot in SoCal, because they don't want to be hounded by "fans" stalking them or have protests in front of their house (if a politician). Our deeds are not online and you can't use the internet to search them all to find out where they live. To order a copy, you have to use a third party who has exorbitant fees and already know the address and approximately when the property was purchased. The order form basically asks for all the information you might be looking for.
countmein
Posts: 564
Joined: Fri Dec 06, 2013 9:10 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by countmein »

Of course you will demand to see the full offers. But it would be interesting to first interrogate the agent. Ask them why they don't want to send them to you. If they evade, ask again. Ask follow up questions that dig at the reasoning of their excuse(s). You don't want them to get away with an attempt to do something shady just because they calculated (correctly) that they could always back out of the attempt. Of course, they might also have a legit reason which may be enlightening to understand.
hachiko
Posts: 228
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:56 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hachiko »

None of this liability stuff makes any sense to me.

It would seem to me that if the realtor gets 3 offers, only one of which includes some letter and that letter discloses a protected class or some other information, and the realtor does not provide that to the seller, now, not only does this (again, presumably pretty litigious prospective buyer) have a possible claim against the seller, they'd also bring in the realtor and broker for good measure. And if it comes out that the seller never received any information that would allow them to discriminate, they get out of the case pretty easily, and now you have the realtor and broker as the only defendants. What realtor wants to take that risk solely for the benefit of their client while potentially increasing their own liability?
hachiko
Posts: 228
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:56 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hachiko »

ResearchMed wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:49 pm
hachiko wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:15 pm If your agent has information that would allow you to sell the property for more, not only are they most certainly obligated to tell you, they are incentived to tell you.
If only it were this easy...

As some have already suggested in the current case, and definitely in some other cases, there can be a real difference between what gets the *seller* the most money and what gets the seller's *agent* the most money.

If a seller's agent has an offer where they get both sides of the commission (e.g., if there is no "buyer agent" involved to split that commission), then it would not be in the agent's "best own financial interest" to present an offer with shared commission that is just slightly above an offer with no shared commission.
And that is one of the biggies, although ethically it shouldn't be.
And that might well be what is going on here, but not necessarily.

But in terms of other "potential issues", albeit not necessarily in this situation, one is that because the agent gets a rather small percentage of the total selling price, it may not be "worth it to the agent" to spend more time/effort trying to get a "small/modest amount more" for the seller. If the agent could find or negotiate an offer with another, say, $100k, then the agent would get somewhere in the $2,000 - $6,000 more (less some costs, or even only a part of that if shared with a broker). But the seller would have gotten something like $94,000 - $98,000 more. That IS a difference! And for a price of even $25k or $10k extra, it's even less financially lucrative for the agent to spend the extra time, but the seller would still have benefited nicely.

I'm surprised there aren't some sliding scales, such as "... or 10% [or 20%..., etc.] of anything over $XXXX" put into the selling contract.
I'm not even sure if that is legal (?).
When I looked into this, it seemed that any "side arrangement" might be a violation of something (e.g., realtor ethics rules?), perhaps *unless* disclosed to the buyers. I'm not quite sure why, or why it would be a problem to disclose such an arrangement to buyers. (But I am not a real estate sales professional.)

And finally, one apparently major reason NOT to disclose those letters and photos is that those can be a time bomb waiting for a discrimination case to be filed by some upset prospective-but-unsuccessful buyer. Didn't get the property? Learn that the buyer was in fact in some "potentially more attractive category" than yourself? (That could be ethnic, age, family status, etc.; there are quite a few "protected classes".)
Whammo... lawsuit time. Or at least on the seller/seller's agent side, the fear of such a lawsuit later.
Hence, NO disclosures about such characteristics of the buyers.

Yup, that means NOT learning that a prospective buyer *really* wanted children to go to those top-rated schools, the ones that may have meant so much to you, the seller, for your own family when you were buying some years ago! Or perhaps that a prospective buyer *really* wanted to live in that "gay friendly neighborhood" or "nice mixed race neighborhood". And those are indeed types of reasons that might matter to some buyers... and could lead to a nice lawsuit in certain cases... or "just" the worry about one, by the seller/seller's agent.

All fine, unless/until that buyer didn't get the property and suspected - or just "wanted to claim" - that the property was sold to someone else because of some related issue...

The "best price or strategy" is not necessarily identical for seller and agent, although in most cases, they are indeed the same.

RM
I agree that there could be perverse incentives, but I'm referring to a situation in which a realtor is acting appropriately. Specifically was referring to the suggestion that a listing agent may hold back information from the seller that a buyer or buyers agent disclosed to the listing agent "in confidence." If an agent represents both parties and doesn't disclose a conflict, they're operating outside the bounds of their agency.
hachiko
Posts: 228
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:56 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hachiko »

rooms222 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:40 pm I think the real estate agent is trying to limit fair housing liability risk. With that said, state law may be different about presenting offers, and there can be a conflict.

This blog post gets into the potential conflict between state law and real estate law and practice to present all offers (and attachments) and violating fair housing laws.

https://www.sloanlawfirm.com/real-estat ... en-affair/

Here is further information about the case he discusses where, when the seller saw that the name on the offer was made by a woman named Ebony, they withdrew their agreement to sell because of race, after the seller made further inquiries:

https://www.thewesterlysun.com/daily-ne ... b9cda.html

NAR discussion of the case, and link to the complaint:
https://www.nar.realtor/fair-housing-co ... by-sellers

The case is in discovery after being transferred to Federal court in Rhode Island from Massachusetts. https://www.pacermonitor.com/public/cas ... dick_et_al

Further info:

https://www.mercurynews.com/2021/03/27/ ... questions/

https://www.nar.realtor/fair-housing-co ... ty-letters
So the seller made an offer to the buyer. The buyer accepted, then the seller refused to sell the house. I understand the theoretical liability, but these facts are not the same as a seller receiving multiple offers and choosing one.
bsteiner
Posts: 5955
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:39 pm
Location: NYC/NJ/FL

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by bsteiner »

hachiko wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 2:34 pm ... I'm referring to a situation in which a realtor is acting appropriately. Specifically was referring to the suggestion that a listing agent may hold back information from the seller that a buyer or buyers agent disclosed to the listing agent "in confidence." ....
Any real estate lawyers here? Doesn't the broker have to tell the seller any information he/she learns? For example, what if the house is listed for $500,000, and the buyer offers $450,000 but tells the broker he/she would go up to $480,000? Doesn't the broker have to tell the seller that since it might affect the seller's decision whether to accept the buyer's offer, reject it, or make a counteroffer (and at what price to make the counteroffer)?
fyre4ce
Posts: 1516
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2017 11:29 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by fyre4ce »

I only read ~1/3 of responses. But I will say it's probably counter-productive to issue threats and deadlines to the agent. It's not how I prefer to do business and I don't think it's necessary yet. There are many reasons why the agent could be acting this way. I think the most likely is that they're used to working with clients who prefer the agent to do this summary for them. Remember, Bogleheads tend to be at the tippy top of the spectrum of how much we think about the details of financial decisions. I would politely say something like this:
Thanks for your response. It's very important for me to review all the offers in their entirety, as it's possible certain details will help me make a decision. I understand you might not provide this to all your clients, but when I made the request I wasn't imagining it would be a large amount of work for you to forward the complete offers over. When is the earliest you can send this information? If there's some reason I'm not seeing that makes this a difficult request, please call me and we can discuss. Thanks.
Then, if you continue to get push-back without a good reason, you can escalate.
User avatar
8foot7
Posts: 2570
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2015 7:29 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by 8foot7 »

This bit about potentially possibly being sued because of inadvertent protected class information being leaked out by an offer and then presumably used as the basis of a decision ... it's nuts to think that will happen to you. Renting an apartment or a house? Sure, valid concern. Selling your house? No. You cannot live in fear of this kind of tail risk. It's a non-issue. :oops:
User avatar
goingup
Posts: 4155
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 1:02 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by goingup »

Supergrover wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:56 pm
goingup wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:41 am
J295 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:10 am You asked why the agent might be doing this, and noted two possibilities.

A reasonable guess based on limited facts is that the agent is inefficient, overwhelmed, or perhaps not customer oriented. A less charitable description would be lazy.

You are wise to want to see the full offers. Terms other than price can be material.
A remote possibility is a corrupt agent. It happened to us. In the 90's, our first home and we had moved out of state. Local agent engineered a "sweetheart" deal with a relative. We were told there was only one offer, which happened to match the number I had stated as the lowest we'd take. We flew back to check on the property before accepting the offer, to find out that someone had ripped out wallpaper and had begun renovations.

It's important to remember that not every acts in your best interest. The most likely explanation is incompetence, but occasionally it is something more.
Not to wander off topic....but please tell me how you handled that!!
Reported the agent to the broker. Got a new agent at different realtor and sold the home for full list. Ended OK, but it was a big lesson.
quantAndHold
Posts: 6048
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2015 10:39 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by quantAndHold »

OP please come back and explain why the agent thinks this is acceptable. I cannot imagine how it would be.

When I was in the same situation with multiple offers, my agent just forwarded the offers as he got them. They’re all boilerplate, fill in the blank contracts, so it was easy enough even for a newb like me to tease out the differences between the offers. I read the offers, agent and I discussed, and we picked the best one. Him holding anything back and summarizing would not have been useful. And would have eroded my trust in him.
Yes, I’m really that pedantic.
User avatar
jfn111
Posts: 1279
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2013 10:42 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by jfn111 »

bsteiner wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 2:46 pm
hachiko wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 2:34 pm ... I'm referring to a situation in which a realtor is acting appropriately. Specifically was referring to the suggestion that a listing agent may hold back information from the seller that a buyer or buyers agent disclosed to the listing agent "in confidence." ....
Any real estate lawyers here? Doesn't the broker have to tell the seller any information he/she learns? For example, what if the house is listed for $500,000, and the buyer offers $450,000 but tells the broker he/she would go up to $480,000? Doesn't the broker have to tell the seller that since it might affect the seller's decision whether to accept the buyer's offer, reject it, or make a counteroffer (and at what price to make the counteroffer)?
You owe confidentiality only to your client. If your representing the seller and the buyer's agent tells you their client will go higher, then you tell the seller that.
Big Dog
Posts: 2724
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2015 4:12 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Big Dog »

OP: I can’t imagine not seeing the actual, signed offers...in pdf/scanned form via email.
I certainly could. Unless the agent redacts a bunch of personal items about the offeror, you the seller could risk getting charged with a violation of hosing law. For example, what if the name appeared to be ethnic and you turned down their proposal? Or, they owned and operated a business (for their income), in a minority neighborhood.... Or, the couple was non-traditional....
AtlBoglehead
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2018 11:19 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by AtlBoglehead »

Your agent has a legal, moral, and ethical obligation to present ALL offers on your property until it is under contract, i.e., signed by all parties on both sides. He cannot interpret those offers for you. What's important to you may not be important to him and vice versa. I've been a full-time or part-time agent for the better part of 40 years. It's in the law PERIOD!
rooms222
Posts: 642
Joined: Fri Feb 22, 2013 2:12 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by rooms222 »

hachiko wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 2:44 pm
rooms222 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:40 pm I think the real estate agent is trying to limit fair housing liability risk. With that said, state law may be different about presenting offers, and there can be a conflict.

This blog post gets into the potential conflict between state law and real estate law and practice to present all offers (and attachments) and violating fair housing laws.

https://www.sloanlawfirm.com/real-estat ... en-affair/

Here is further information about the case he discusses where, when the seller saw that the name on the offer was made by a woman named Ebony, they withdrew their agreement to sell because of race, after the seller made further inquiries:

https://www.thewesterlysun.com/daily-ne ... b9cda.html

NAR discussion of the case, and link to the complaint:
https://www.nar.realtor/fair-housing-co ... by-sellers

The case is in discovery after being transferred to Federal court in Rhode Island from Massachusetts. https://www.pacermonitor.com/public/cas ... dick_et_al

Further info:

https://www.mercurynews.com/2021/03/27/ ... questions/

https://www.nar.realtor/fair-housing-co ... ty-letters
So the seller made an offer to the buyer. The buyer accepted, then the seller refused to sell the house. I understand the theoretical liability, but these facts are not the same as a seller receiving multiple offers and choosing one.
I agree. The Mercury News article deals the most with the idea of picking one over another in multiple offers. Interesting to see that across the river in Ontario, pre-emptive offers are known as bully offers- https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/windsor/ ... -1.5781687
Last edited by rooms222 on Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Shackleton
Posts: 565
Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2014 6:20 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Shackleton »

hachiko wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:29 pm
Shackleton wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:26 am Another data point, I’ve only sold 2 houses, both in CO, and both times we were emailed the full offers. This allowed us to accept, reject, or counter directly in the docusign-type application. I would never accept a summary from my real estate agent.

Also, people should remember that Realtor is a registered trademark and only RE agents that are licensed and are members of NAR are required to follow the Realtor ethics. So all Realtors are RE agents, but not all RE agents are Realtors. https://www.realtor.com/advice/buy/what ... on-broker/

There may be local laws that a RE agent must follow and you can look those up by your state.
The state doesn't matter except maybe Louisiana, I have no idea what they do there. It's basic agency law. The listing agent is your agent. They are obligated to provide you with information they obtain on your behalf (i.e., offers, letters, information in passing, etc) if you specifically ask. Where the state may matter is whether they are required to provide it to you if you don't ask.
Of course the state matters — there are no federal real estate licensing laws, only state licensing laws. So the state that the OP and their RE agent are in matters a great deal as to what is required. Also, RE transactions are handled very differently in different parts of the country. In some areas, lawyers are routinely used to review all RE transactions, in other areas a lawyer is only involved if things go very wrong and most RE transactions are handled entirely by the agents and a title company. So state definitely matters.
“Superhuman effort isn't worth a damn unless it achieves results.” ~Ernest Shackleton
bwalling
Posts: 300
Joined: Thu Nov 25, 2010 1:04 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by bwalling »

Northern Flicker wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 10:38 pm
valleyrock wrote: Why would it be improper or illegal for an agent to provide letters accompany offers to the sellers? Can't sellers know the names of people making the offers...
It is not illegal, but it increases the risk of running afoul of fair housing laws. My view is that it is in your interest not to see the letters.
All information is relevant if I'm negotiating. Don't shortchange me for your own interests, especially when you're paid to act on my behalf. If we don't have that level of trust, then I need a new agent.

OP, agent sends everything immediately, or you call the broker directly.
HopeofFIRE
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2021 3:51 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by HopeofFIRE »

Former realtor here. When I was an agent in CA, we were required to present all offers at the time they were received. Not summaries either. We were required to present the entire offer.

If I were you I would contact your agent's broker asap and tell him to assign you a new agent immediately.
User avatar
galawdawg
Posts: 2763
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:59 pm
Location: Georgia

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by galawdawg »

Big Dog wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:28 pm
OP: I can’t imagine not seeing the actual, signed offers...in pdf/scanned form via email.
I certainly could. Unless the agent redacts a bunch of personal items about the offeror, you the seller could risk getting charged with a violation of hosing law. For example, what if the name appeared to be ethnic and you turned down their proposal? Or, they owned and operated a business (for their income), in a minority neighborhood.... Or, the couple was non-traditional....
Every state differs, but in Georgia the only place that a buyers information appears is on the signature page of the GAR standard Purchase and Sale Agreement. So all an agent in Georgia would need to do to redact that information is omit thatl page. It takes less than a minute using a PDF editor to do that and then the agent could simply email the document less the omitted page. If there are stipulation pages, they would redact the bottom portion of the page containing the names and signatures. Again, it doesn't take much time and if the agent is unwilling to do this, the buyer needs a new agent. Making a decision about the sale of real property without reviewing every term, condition and contingency of each offer is unwise and any real estate agent who expects their client to do that has no business being a real estate agent nor holding any position of employment where they have a fiduciary obligation to another.
Northern Flicker
Posts: 8039
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2015 12:29 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Northern Flicker »

bwalling wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:56 pm
Northern Flicker wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 10:38 pm
valleyrock wrote: Why would it be improper or illegal for an agent to provide letters accompany offers to the sellers? Can't sellers know the names of people making the offers...
It is not illegal, but it increases the risk of running afoul of fair housing laws. My view is that it is in your interest not to see the letters.
All information is relevant if I'm negotiating. Don't shortchange me for your own interests, especially when you're paid to act on my behalf. If we don't have that level of trust, then I need a new agent.

OP, agent sends everything immediately, or you call the broker directly.
If you want the letters the agent would send them. I wasn't suggesting information should be withheld, but that it generally is in the seller's interest not to receive letters from buyers pleading their case with subjective content. My understanding is that fair housing liability does not require intent to discriminate, only that it is the effect of one's actions.
Last edited by Northern Flicker on Fri Jun 11, 2021 7:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
My postings are my opinion, and never should be construed as a recommendation to buy, sell, or hold any particular investment.
stan1
Posts: 10310
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:35 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by stan1 »

nss20 wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 4:25 pm
We are baffled by the reluctance. I am looking for insights that anybody can provide.
OP, it's been 24 hours, did you get the details you wanted?
nalor511
Posts: 1520
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:00 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by nalor511 »

HopeofFIRE wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 5:11 pm Former realtor here. When I was an agent in CA, we were required to present all offers at the time they were received. Not summaries either. We were required to present the entire offer.

If I were you I would contact your agent's broker asap and tell him to assign you a new agent immediately.
What is "required" and what actually happens are two very different things. I've had my offer not be presented, admittedly so (by the listing agent), because they "didn't think it would be accepted". I moved on, but it definitely happens.
hachiko
Posts: 228
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:56 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hachiko »

Shackleton wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:51 pm
hachiko wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:29 pm
Shackleton wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:26 am Another data point, I’ve only sold 2 houses, both in CO, and both times we were emailed the full offers. This allowed us to accept, reject, or counter directly in the docusign-type application. I would never accept a summary from my real estate agent.

Also, people should remember that Realtor is a registered trademark and only RE agents that are licensed and are members of NAR are required to follow the Realtor ethics. So all Realtors are RE agents, but not all RE agents are Realtors. https://www.realtor.com/advice/buy/what ... on-broker/

There may be local laws that a RE agent must follow and you can look those up by your state.
The state doesn't matter except maybe Louisiana, I have no idea what they do there. It's basic agency law. The listing agent is your agent. They are obligated to provide you with information they obtain on your behalf (i.e., offers, letters, information in passing, etc) if you specifically ask. Where the state may matter is whether they are required to provide it to you if you don't ask.
Of course the state matters — there are no federal real estate licensing laws, only state licensing laws. So the state that the OP and their RE agent are in matters a great deal as to what is required. Also, RE transactions are handled very differently in different parts of the country. In some areas, lawyers are routinely used to review all RE transactions, in other areas a lawyer is only involved if things go very wrong and most RE transactions are handled entirely by the agents and a title company. So state definitely matters.
I 100% agree that real estate law is particularly state specific.

This is about simple agency law. I'm not involved in real estate though so I could be wrong, but I haven't seen anything which would suggest that listing agents could decide to withhold, or enter into an agreement to withhold (with anyone other than the seller), information about the buyer that would allow the seller to sell the house to that buyer for more.
Mr. Rumples
Posts: 1302
Joined: Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:16 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Mr. Rumples »

When I sold our condo, there were 17 showings in less than two days and multiple offers. I ended up taking a cash offer with a waiver of inspection and appraisal. It was not the highest offer, but I did not want a lot of closing drama and waiting on this and that approval. Thus, a summary might not do it. You might want to take a lower offer or decide between two where one will waive inspection and another won't.
rooms222
Posts: 642
Joined: Fri Feb 22, 2013 2:12 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by rooms222 »

hachiko wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:18 pm
Shackleton wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:51 pm
hachiko wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:29 pm
Shackleton wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:26 am Another data point, I’ve only sold 2 houses, both in CO, and both times we were emailed the full offers. This allowed us to accept, reject, or counter directly in the docusign-type application. I would never accept a summary from my real estate agent.

Also, people should remember that Realtor is a registered trademark and only RE agents that are licensed and are members of NAR are required to follow the Realtor ethics. So all Realtors are RE agents, but not all RE agents are Realtors. https://www.realtor.com/advice/buy/what ... on-broker/

There may be local laws that a RE agent must follow and you can look those up by your state.
The state doesn't matter except maybe Louisiana, I have no idea what they do there. It's basic agency law. The listing agent is your agent. They are obligated to provide you with information they obtain on your behalf (i.e., offers, letters, information in passing, etc) if you specifically ask. Where the state may matter is whether they are required to provide it to you if you don't ask.
Of course the state matters — there are no federal real estate licensing laws, only state licensing laws. So the state that the OP and their RE agent are in matters a great deal as to what is required. Also, RE transactions are handled very differently in different parts of the country. In some areas, lawyers are routinely used to review all RE transactions, in other areas a lawyer is only involved if things go very wrong and most RE transactions are handled entirely by the agents and a title company. So state definitely matters.
I 100% agree that real estate law is particularly state specific.

This is about simple agency law. I'm not involved in real estate though so I could be wrong, but I haven't seen anything which would suggest that listing agents could decide to withhold, or enter into an agreement to withhold (with anyone other than the seller), information about the buyer that would allow the seller to sell the house to that buyer for more.
Yes, that is where the potential conflict is. General real estate law is state specific. Fair housing law is Federal. The two bodies of law can be saying things in conflict with one another. I agree that the redaction of names and similar information while presenting the complete offer is probably the best way to deal with this.

Some have speculated on the motives of the real estate agents. One potential motivator is rulings about not being able to be indemnified in the case of a fair housing violation. This means that what the agent in the Rhode Island case above did was correct to insulate themselves from liability- at the first sign of a violation, they dropped the seller, so they could not also be accused of a violation.

Passing along supplemental love letters may fall into that category should a violation of fair housing be made. That is why the NAR best practice is to tell the client in advance that the agent is not going to deliver those letters, before one even exists. Kind of like Costco having in its membership terms you agree to let them look at your cart and receipt, something non-membership stores have a harder time enforcing legally (other than formally trespassing you so you don't come back).
Tavistock1
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Feb 06, 2020 11:57 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Tavistock1 »

nss20 wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 4:25 pm We are selling some real estate. The location is fantastic and it's a hot market. Our real estate agent has received many offers within a week, all of them higher than the asking price. We need to decide quickly. The agent has created a summary for us. However, it doesn't contain all of the information such as the amount of pre-approval, appraisal contingency, etc.

We asked to see the actual offer documents and it is proving difficult. We had to ask to get the initial set of offers, that we finally received. Now we are being told that offers that came later will take time to send. The agent also claims that he/she hasn't had to send this information in past dealings with other sellers.

I am looking to understand the behavior. Some possibilities:

1. Our agent thinks that by seeing the offers, we will make a biased decision based on other information that we glean.
2. Our agent thinks that we will use the names of the prospective buyers to try to contact them directly.

We are baffled by the reluctance. I am looking for insights that anybody can provide.
In most if not all states, Realtors are required to present ALL offers. The realtor works for you. If you request ALL offers the realtor is obligated to present same. Period
stan1
Posts: 10310
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:35 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by stan1 »

Tavistock1 wrote: Sat Jun 12, 2021 9:01 am In most if not all states, Realtors are required to present ALL offers. The realtor works for you. If you request ALL offers the realtor is obligated to present same. Period
Could very well be a difference in how a verbal offer is handled compared to a written offer. Written offers, yes. Someone calling up the realtor and saying "hey, do you think the buyer would accept $300K on that house you have listed for $400K" .... nope the realtor does not need to say "wow, thank you for that offer, let me check with my seller". I did have this happen, realtor called me laughing hysterically and I laughed along with her. So I guess she did actually "present" it if comedy counts.

In today's crazy times if there are 50 written offers I'd expect all of those would not be presented, but rather a process would be kicked off to narrow down to a handful through a BAFO (possibly limited to cash or high down payment if applicable).
Tavistock1
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Feb 06, 2020 11:57 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Tavistock1 »

stan1 wrote: Sat Jun 12, 2021 9:22 am
Tavistock1 wrote: Sat Jun 12, 2021 9:01 am In most if not all states, Realtors are required to present ALL offers. The realtor works for you. If you request ALL offers the realtor is obligated to present same. Period
Could very well be a difference in how a verbal offer is handled compared to a written offer. Written offers, yes. Someone calling up the realtor and saying "hey, do you think the buyer would accept $300K on that house you have listed for $400K" .... nope the realtor does not need to say "wow, thank you for that offer, let me check with my seller". I did have this happen, realtor called me laughing hysterically and I laughed along with her. So I guess she did actually "present" it if comedy counts.

In today's crazy times if there are 50 written offers I'd expect all of those would not be presented, but rather a process would be kicked off to narrow down to a handful through a BAFO (possibly limited to cash or high down payment if

In most states verbal offers aren’t offers. If they had 50 offers, the agent can/should do a spreadsheet of all offers, with all details- it’s their job
User avatar
hand
Posts: 1689
Joined: Sun May 17, 2009 8:42 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hand »

Tavistock1 wrote: Sat Jun 12, 2021 9:01 am
In most if not all states, Realtors are required to present ALL offers. The realtor works for you. If you request ALL offers the realtor is obligated to present same. Period
Without meaningful enforcement, this "obligation" is a marketing line, not a real obligation.

How would a buyer or seller know, that an offer was not presented?
Even if they knew an offer was not presented, how would the buyer or seller *prove* the offer was not presented?
Even if failure to present is proved, is there any remedy outcome that is beneficial to either the buyer or seller that makes it worth the hassle of pursuing a complaint or a claim?

If you are a seller who believes the relevant laws are protecting you, you are naïve at best - the only protection you have as a buyer or seller is your trust in realtor... choose well!
Supergrover
Posts: 70
Joined: Tue Jan 12, 2021 3:15 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Supergrover »

Update please!
Tavistock1
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Feb 06, 2020 11:57 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Tavistock1 »

hand wrote: Sun Jun 13, 2021 3:09 pm
Tavistock1 wrote: Sat Jun 12, 2021 9:01 am
In most if not all states, Realtors are required to present ALL offers. The realtor works for you. If you request ALL offers the realtor is obligated to present same. Period
Without meaningful enforcement, this "obligation" is a marketing line, not a real obligation.

How would a buyer or seller know, that an offer was not presented?
Even if they knew an offer was not presented, how would the buyer or seller *prove* the offer was not presented?
Even if failure to present is proved, is there any remedy outcome that is beneficial to either the buyer or seller that makes it worth the hassle of pursuing a complaint or a claim?

If you are a seller who believes the relevant laws are protecting you, you are naïve at best - the only protection you have as a buyer or seller is your trust in realtor... choose well!
While you do make a somewhat valid point, the same could be said of a dentist recommendation I received recently that was ludicrous. The difference is that the entry requirement for a person to be a Realtor vs. that of a dentist is so different it's laughable...many concentrated years of study vs. what is doable with about an 8th grade education. Regarding proof, at least in many states, if one of the buyer agents was "suspicious" , he/she could demand to have confirmed that the seller had reviewed an offer. Indeed, in some states there are written forms, crafted by the state , that require a seller signature confirming receipt of an offer. I do believe that consumers should thoroughly investigate a potential realtor for hire. That said, there are remedies beyond just "trusting" a given hire. At least in my state, if it were discovered that an offer was not presented to a seller, the consequences facing the offending realtor are quite severe...I believe up to license suspension, significant fines, etc.
User avatar
galawdawg
Posts: 2763
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:59 pm
Location: Georgia

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by galawdawg »

Supergrover wrote: Sun Jun 13, 2021 3:56 pm Update please!
Sometimes I think it would be nice if on the right side under the username, number of posts, date joined and location there was also a field that says something like "Response rate" and has the percent of times that a user responds to a thread that they have created. Maybe it is me but it appears that it is becoming more frequent that some will start a new thread asking for advice, never to return again to respond to follow-up questions or even just post a simple "thanks for the input" as a matter of common courtesy.

Makes you wonder if the time and effort that most Bogleheads put into responding to threads is worth it if the OP isn't even reading them...but such is life. Perhaps lurkers or others with similar issues benefit from the exchange of information and ideas.
Lets do this thing
Posts: 63
Joined: Sun Feb 09, 2014 10:11 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Lets do this thing »

BillWalters wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 5:02 pm I remain astonished this industry hasn’t been disrupted.
Best comment award.
Lazareth
Posts: 285
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2016 9:21 am
Location: New England

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by Lazareth »

Big Dog wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:28 pm
OP: I can’t imagine not seeing the actual, signed offers...in pdf/scanned form via email.
I certainly could. Unless the agent redacts a bunch of personal items about the offeror, you the seller could risk getting charged with a violation of hosing law. For example, what if the name appeared to be ethnic and you turned down their proposal? Or, they owned and operated a business (for their income), in a minority neighborhood.... Or, the couple was non-traditional....
The agent should not redact anything that was allowed in the offer. The implication here is that the agent is protecting the prospective buyer from assumed discrimination on the part of the seller. Who gives the agent that right to make that assumption of (the seller's) guilt? It could be that the agent has an agenda of their own and therefore is hiding information from the seller, in favor of that agenda.
a/67, retired, married, enjoy p/t employment.
Topic Author
nss20
Posts: 25
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2020 1:36 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by nss20 »

Update:

We were able to get the offers after a phone call where we insisted on looking at the actual offers. There was one offer from somebody who was represented by our agent, but we pretty much knew that already. For now, I am chalking up the reticence to a desire by the agent to have greater control over the process; and, perhaps because the agent was concerned that the potential dual agency would become even more visible and become a distraction. (From our perspective, issues related to the dual agency weren't even part of our consideration at that time). Ultimately, we got the information in time and were able to choose from the offers.

The key issue that I struggle with in contentious situations is the balance between maintaining a good working relationship while insisting on enforcing an agreement (or even the law, as some have suggested). The urgent timing adds to the tension. Hopefully, we will still have a working relationship with the agent after this, albeit with a little strain and some loss of trust. The practical implication is that we will involve a lawyer to ensure that our interests are protected (which adds to our expense).
hachiko
Posts: 228
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:56 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by hachiko »

In initial and non-escalated discussions there's rarely any reason to reference the law or "the agreement." One of my pet peeves is "pursuant to the agreement..." They know what's in the agreement.

This should really never get adversarial.

You "can you send me the full offers"
Agent "no"
You "I should consider the full offers in making my decision."
Agent "insert objections here"
You [consider objections as they come, if they aren't important to you, then just brush them off] "thank you for those thoughts, I'd still like to see the full offers. When do you think you can get them to me to look over?"
Agent "by tomorrow morning"

And you've gotten the offers, no feelings hurt, you thanked the Agent for their advice, and they'll gladly take your money 😉 on your next home purchase or sale.
fyre4ce
Posts: 1516
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2017 11:29 am

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by fyre4ce »

nss20 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 2:31 pm Update:

We were able to get the offers after a phone call where we insisted on looking at the actual offers. There was one offer from somebody who was represented by our agent, but we pretty much knew that already. For now, I am chalking up the reticence to a desire by the agent to have greater control over the process; and, perhaps because the agent was concerned that the potential dual agency would become even more visible and become a distraction. (From our perspective, issues related to the dual agency weren't even part of our consideration at that time). Ultimately, we got the information in time and were able to choose from the offers.

The key issue that I struggle with in contentious situations is the balance between maintaining a good working relationship while insisting on enforcing an agreement (or even the law, as some have suggested). The urgent timing adds to the tension. Hopefully, we will still have a working relationship with the agent after this, albeit with a little strain and some loss of trust. The practical implication is that we will involve a lawyer to ensure that our interests are protected (which adds to our expense).
It sounds like a polite but firm approach won the day, congrats. It's not clear to me why you think you need a lawyer - it seems like you got all the information you needed to make a decision. In any case, the bolded part of your response is a key component of maybe most relationships, personal and professional - knowing when to push (and how), and when to let things go. It's not easy, but sounds like you struck close to the right balance here. I'm glad you didn't resort to more serious threats.
reln
Posts: 579
Joined: Fri Apr 19, 2019 4:01 pm

Re: Real estate agent reluctant to show offers to the seller prior to decision

Post by reln »

nss20 wrote: Mon Jun 14, 2021 2:31 pm Update:

We were able to get the offers after a phone call where we insisted on looking at the actual offers. There was one offer from somebody who was represented by our agent, but we pretty much knew that already. For now, I am chalking up the reticence to a desire by the agent to have greater control over the process; and, perhaps because the agent was concerned that the potential dual agency would become even more visible and become a distraction. (From our perspective, issues related to the dual agency weren't even part of our consideration at that time). Ultimately, we got the information in time and were able to choose from the offers.

The key issue that I struggle with in contentious situations is the balance between maintaining a good working relationship while insisting on enforcing an agreement (or even the law, as some have suggested). The urgent timing adds to the tension. Hopefully, we will still have a working relationship with the agent after this, albeit with a little strain and some loss of trust. The practical implication is that we will involve a lawyer to ensure that our interests are protected (which adds to our expense).
You weren't going to hire a lawyer?
Post Reply