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Old 06-11-2014, 12:58 AM
 
18 posts, read 14,777 times
Reputation: 15

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Hello Forum,

Long time reader, but first time poster. Recently, I had a very bad experience with a Realtor and I'm seeking more information on how to proceed. Although I feel like this was a business transaction that just went bad, I feel that there were a lot of questions left unanswered.

A few months ago, I came across a rental home on a large lot that wasn't for sale. However, it fit my needs, so I contacted the owner out of the blue to ask if he'd be willing to sell. The owner turned out to be a Realtor who owned the home as an investment property and was amenable to selling once his renters moved out. Soon thereafter, he contacted me and informed me that the renters were moving out and that the house would be for sale in the coming weeks. All was well and good at this time as far as I was concerned.

A few weeks later, we scheduled a showing of the home. The home showed well, but there were some issues that were questionable right off the bat, e.g. electrical wiring in the kitchen gave me pause, water damage in the master bathroom, extremely old condenser on it's last legs, fence was in very poor condition and needed to be replaced, very strong natural gas smell, etc. All in all, we still liked the home, but we wanted to get the gas smell checked out first and foremost. After a little back and forth, we made a full price offer through our Realtor. The seller accepted the offer, but we didn't hear from him for weeks. Finally, our Realtor had us put in an offer in writing to ensure we'd get the home. The seller acknowledged the offer in writing, but again, didn't hear from him.

A few weeks later, after passing up on homes I liked in waiting for this one, the seller forwards the contract to my Realtor. In it, he states that the closing date shall be within 30 days, he slashed my Realtor's commission .5% and informs me that he would provide updated landscaping, fix the water damage and have the home cleaned. Still, there was no mention of the gas smell. In addition, I've been waiting for a response for a good 6-8 weeks with no response from him. Then, out of nowhere, he forwards the contract with these items and all of his amendments.

I agreed to everything as long as the inspection turned out OK. Well, after having the home inspected, there were issues. Without detailing everything, things like the electrical panel/wiring were not in good working order, neither condenser cooled properly, the roof was patched incorrectly, the pool would need to be replastered in semi-near future, many of the windows didn't work properly, etc. The kicker was, magically, the gas was not turned on for the inspection. When informed of the gas not being on, the seller stated that he did all he could do to have it turned on. When I requested that he pay for the inspector to return, after already shelling out hundreds of dollars, the seller informed me that he would not pay for the inspector to return. Further, he informed my Realtor that she should tell the inspector that she would get him more business by referral if he did it for free. I have an e-mail from the seller informing my Realtor that the home would be completely ready for inspection and to go ahead and schedule the inspection.

After adding up the cost of fixing most of the items listed in the inspection report, mainly the safety issues, I requested that these items be taken care of before moving forward with the home purchase. In no time, the seller offered me $1,000 to take care of everything. However, I estimated that cost to fix all of the issues within the home (and to fix the fence) would be between $10,000 - 20,000. Paying as much as I was for this home, I wanted a move-in ready home with very limited fixing up to do. By this time, I still haven't found out about the gas smell.

After crunching the numbers again and again and feeling as though the Realtor was hiding something, I backed out of the deal and requested that the contract be terminated. Before termination, the Realtor offered another $500, then another $2,000 after he saw that I was serious about backing out, but it just wasn't enough. The house was a foreclosure a few years ago then the seller bought it as a rental. So, it's not like I was buying from a true homeowner who cared about the home. It was just a money maker for the guy.

As a final shot to me and my Realtor, the seller (also a Realtor) said that my Realtor should've controlled my emotions and we could've closed. To me, that is completely unprofessional and not even true. I was this guy's puppet all along since he was in the drivers seat. I assume he thought I wanted the home so bad that I'd accept everything and keep shelling out money.

Now, I'm not saying that this guy is a criminal, but I know he is a jerk. Still, I plan to call his broker as I ask for professionalism and courtesy when I am giving someone my business, my money. I also plan to file a complaint with TREC if at all possible. He violated at least 1 part of the contract regarding the inspection and I don't think he is keeping true to the Realtor Code of Ethics.

Any thoughts? Is there another avenue I can pursue? Believe it or not, I'm not mad about the house, I am only angry with how I was treated. I passed up on a lot of homes waiting for this one and after waiting, I am get shaken down for more money. I guess to this Realtor/seller, I have to buy a house I plan to live in for years to come and have no peace of mind.

Feel free to leave me some advice.

Thank you.
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Old 06-11-2014, 05:23 AM
 
5,048 posts, read 8,403,934 times
Reputation: 4167
About the gas...your area gas company doesn't come out for free when there's a report of gas smell? In may experience, when they do so, they do more than just shut it off...they find the problem and let you know the story on it. And they're happy to come any time of day or night or holiday or Sunday when they get paid double of triple. I've had them come out in Hawaiian shirt and flip flops from a bbq, make triple pay and go back to their friend's party.
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Old 06-11-2014, 07:10 AM
 
Location: Raleigh
11,581 posts, read 8,941,246 times
Reputation: 16430
You know, as I read this, it looks like it was just a deal that fell through. You made an offer, contingent on inspection. Inspection brought up issues. You and the seller weren't able to come to an agreement. Could the seller have done more to move the property? Sure, but if he's renting, he makes money on the property anyway. Was the seller an a**? Maybe.
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Old 06-11-2014, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
2,387 posts, read 7,065,816 times
Reputation: 4033
Quote:
Originally Posted by JONOV View Post
You know, as I read this, it looks like it was just a deal that fell through. You made an offer, contingent on inspection. Inspection brought up issues. You and the seller weren't able to come to an agreement. Could the seller have done more to move the property? Sure, but if he's renting, he makes money on the property anyway. Was the seller an a**? Maybe.
As I read this it is potentially more than just a deal that fell through. The OP is not concerned about that part as much as how the seller acted. The seller is a licensed Real Estate Salesperson/Broker and has potentially broke the law. More consumers do need to take the steps the OP is planning if for no other reason than to help protect the next consumer.
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Old 06-11-2014, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
2,387 posts, read 7,065,816 times
Reputation: 4033
Quote:
Originally Posted by G2020 View Post
Hello Forum,

Long time reader, but first time poster. Recently, I had a very bad experience with a Realtor and I'm seeking more information on how to proceed. Although I feel like this was a business transaction that just went bad, I feel that there were a lot of questions left unanswered.

A few months ago, I came across a rental home on a large lot that wasn't for sale. However, it fit my needs, so I contacted the owner out of the blue to ask if he'd be willing to sell. The owner turned out to be a Realtor who owned the home as an investment property and was amenable to selling once his renters moved out. Soon thereafter, he contacted me and informed me that the renters were moving out and that the house would be for sale in the coming weeks. All was well and good at this time as far as I was concerned.

A few weeks later, we scheduled a showing of the home. The home showed well, but there were some issues that were questionable right off the bat, e.g. electrical wiring in the kitchen gave me pause, water damage in the master bathroom, extremely old condenser on it's last legs, fence was in very poor condition and needed to be replaced, very strong natural gas smell, etc. All in all, we still liked the home, but we wanted to get the gas smell checked out first and foremost. After a little back and forth, we made a full price offer through our Realtor. The seller accepted the offer, but we didn't hear from him for weeks. Finally, our Realtor had us put in an offer in writing to ensure we'd get the home. The seller acknowledged the offer in writing, but again, didn't hear from him.

A few weeks later, after passing up on homes I liked in waiting for this one, the seller forwards the contract to my Realtor. In it, he states that the closing date shall be within 30 days, he slashed my Realtor's commission .5% and informs me that he would provide updated landscaping, fix the water damage and have the home cleaned. Still, there was no mention of the gas smell. In addition, I've been waiting for a response for a good 6-8 weeks with no response from him. Then, out of nowhere, he forwards the contract with these items and all of his amendments.

I agreed to everything as long as the inspection turned out OK. Well, after having the home inspected, there were issues. Without detailing everything, things like the electrical panel/wiring were not in good working order, neither condenser cooled properly, the roof was patched incorrectly, the pool would need to be replastered in semi-near future, many of the windows didn't work properly, etc. The kicker was, magically, the gas was not turned on for the inspection. When informed of the gas not being on, the seller stated that he did all he could do to have it turned on. When I requested that he pay for the inspector to return, after already shelling out hundreds of dollars, the seller informed me that he would not pay for the inspector to return. Further, he informed my Realtor that she should tell the inspector that she would get him more business by referral if he did it for free. I have an e-mail from the seller informing my Realtor that the home would be completely ready for inspection and to go ahead and schedule the inspection.

After adding up the cost of fixing most of the items listed in the inspection report, mainly the safety issues, I requested that these items be taken care of before moving forward with the home purchase. In no time, the seller offered me $1,000 to take care of everything. However, I estimated that cost to fix all of the issues within the home (and to fix the fence) would be between $10,000 - 20,000. Paying as much as I was for this home, I wanted a move-in ready home with very limited fixing up to do. By this time, I still haven't found out about the gas smell.

After crunching the numbers again and again and feeling as though the Realtor was hiding something, I backed out of the deal and requested that the contract be terminated. Before termination, the Realtor offered another $500, then another $2,000 after he saw that I was serious about backing out, but it just wasn't enough. The house was a foreclosure a few years ago then the seller bought it as a rental. So, it's not like I was buying from a true homeowner who cared about the home. It was just a money maker for the guy.

As a final shot to me and my Realtor, the seller (also a Realtor) said that my Realtor should've controlled my emotions and we could've closed. To me, that is completely unprofessional and not even true. I was this guy's puppet all along since he was in the drivers seat. I assume he thought I wanted the home so bad that I'd accept everything and keep shelling out money.

Now, I'm not saying that this guy is a criminal, but I know he is a jerk. Still, I plan to call his broker as I ask for professionalism and courtesy when I am giving someone my business, my money. I also plan to file a complaint with TREC if at all possible. He violated at least 1 part of the contract regarding the inspection and I don't think he is keeping true to the Realtor Code of Ethics.

Any thoughts? Is there another avenue I can pursue? Believe it or not, I'm not mad about the house, I am only angry with how I was treated. I passed up on a lot of homes waiting for this one and after waiting, I am get shaken down for more money. I guess to this Realtor/seller, I have to buy a house I plan to live in for years to come and have no peace of mind.

Feel free to leave me some advice.

Thank you.
Thank you for being a concerned consumer! You are doing the proper thing by filing a complaint with TREC. From your description above there are concerns that the seller/Agent/Broker might have violated several laws and TREC will determine this when they review your complaint. As a consumer, and if I were in this position, I would potentially notify the controlling Broker for this seller and try to work the issue out to include reimbursement of any money you have spent to this point on that home (inspections, etc.). Your Agent can help you with this step. The seller's controlling Broker might well handle the issue and take sanctions against the Agent to prevent having to answer a complaint you might file with TREC. If the Broker does little or nothing, and/or you run into more issues, then by all means file the complaint with TREC. The controlling Broker is responsible for their own Agents regardless of whether they were acting on behalf of the Brokerage or not.

Good luck and let us know how it turns out.
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Old 06-11-2014, 11:50 AM
 
Location: Northern panhandle WV
3,007 posts, read 2,629,328 times
Reputation: 6771
I am curious, where would the Broker enter into this situation? The owner of the property happens to be an agent, but he is selling the house not his brokerage or at least I didn't see anything in this thread to say it was under the brokerage.

Also the OP approached this guy cold turkey about wanting to buy the house which was not for sale.

I am not saying that nothing was done wrong, just not sure about sanctions in a case like this.
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:58 PM
 
18 posts, read 14,777 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by cully View Post
About the gas...your area gas company doesn't come out for free when there's a report of gas smell? In may experience, when they do so, they do more than just shut it off...they find the problem and let you know the story on it. And they're happy to come any time of day or night or holiday or Sunday when they get paid double of triple. I've had them come out in Hawaiian shirt and flip flops from a bbq, make triple pay and go back to their friend's party.
I'm sure they would come out, but I don't own the home, so contacting the gas company was not something I felt I should do. Plus, I figured I'd get my answers about the gas smell after the home inspection was complete.

A friend of mine in the same neighborhood bought a home nearby a few years ago that was found to have a leaking gas pipe under the kitchen floor. He had to have his entire kitchen floor opened up to get to the pipe in or underneath the slab. I'm sure it was a fun experience for him. This story kept echoing in my mind during the home buying process, so I wanted to ensure gas leaks were not a problem.

Gas leaks and electrical issues were my biggest fear. It turns out, the house sure enough had electrical issues. There is a possibility that there is a gas leak as well, but we never got an answer.
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:09 PM
 
18 posts, read 14,777 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by JONOV View Post
You know, as I read this, it looks like it was just a deal that fell through. You made an offer, contingent on inspection. Inspection brought up issues. You and the seller weren't able to come to an agreement. Could the seller have done more to move the property? Sure, but if he's renting, he makes money on the property anyway. Was the seller an a**? Maybe.
Maybe you are right, but my Realtor seems to think otherwise. He didn't disclose that he was a Broker/Owner in the contract, he misled us about the gas being on during inspection although the contract states that he would ensure it would be on and before that, after waiting over a month with our offer in hand, he gives us an ultimatum to buy the home with his contract amendments and close ASAP or the house would be placed on MLS.

Business is business, I guess. However, if I were to have purchased this home, I would've had no peace of mind. My understanding was that Realtors were held to a higher standard unlike the cliche "used car salesman."
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:17 PM
 
18 posts, read 14,777 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by escanlan View Post
Thank you for being a concerned consumer! You are doing the proper thing by filing a complaint with TREC. From your description above there are concerns that the seller/Agent/Broker might have violated several laws and TREC will determine this when they review your complaint. As a consumer, and if I were in this position, I would potentially notify the controlling Broker for this seller and try to work the issue out to include reimbursement of any money you have spent to this point on that home (inspections, etc.). Your Agent can help you with this step. The seller's controlling Broker might well handle the issue and take sanctions against the Agent to prevent having to answer a complaint you might file with TREC. If the Broker does little or nothing, and/or you run into more issues, then by all means file the complaint with TREC. The controlling Broker is responsible for their own Agents regardless of whether they were acting on behalf of the Brokerage or not.

Good luck and let us know how it turns out.
I really haven't thought of being reimbursed for my losses during this process. If that is a possibility, that's great. However, my real concern is that this Realtor has questionable integrity and will do this to the next guy. If someone with deeper pockets than myself chooses to purchase this home and complete all of the updates, then so be it. I just want to ensure this particular Realtor discloses everything that was found in the inspection. Further, it makes me feel better as a consumer to have this guy put on notice that I won't let him easily get away with how I was treated. Again, I'm not mad, but I've utilized many Realtors in my lifetime who went out of their way to assist in buying/selling a property unlike this individual.
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:19 PM
 
18 posts, read 14,777 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by arwenmark View Post
I am curious, where would the Broker enter into this situation? The owner of the property happens to be an agent, but he is selling the house not his brokerage or at least I didn't see anything in this thread to say it was under the brokerage.

Also the OP approached this guy cold turkey about wanting to buy the house which was not for sale.

I am not saying that nothing was done wrong, just not sure about sanctions in a case like this.
Honestly, I'm unsure of how it all works. This Realtor works under a brokerage, has his own company as well as a LP rental property company. My Realtor referred to him as a Broker Associate. I would think the brokerage would like to know the way in which one of its employees was treating potential clients nonetheless.
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