Buyers: Insist on dealing with the "listing" agent..

I'd be interested in anyone’s opinions on something that happened to me on friday. This is the short version!

I’ve been interested in a property for a few weeks. I have had two inspections and had a final look on Thursday. The agent I had been dealing with from the real estate agency (which turned out not to be the listing agent but from the same agency) tells me about another interested buyer, who has been negotiating for a few weeks, looking for an extended settlement. He told us there was an offer, which has been agreed to BUT not signed yet, still negotiating settlement terms I believe I was told.

He also told us exactly what the offer was.

At this point we were pretty confident in buying it becasue we were prepared to go a little higher than the figure on the table, with a QUICK settlement, because I have the cash, no finance!

So, Friday comes, we offer the same amount as the agent told us the other offer was for, with a quicker settlement. We sign the contract and the cheque (.25%) give it to the agent. He calls, says OUR offer is accepted and can exchange today. Then he comes over, confirms that vendors have agreed, they have signed the contract and given it to their solicitor and ready to exchange! He congratulated us on our successful purchase even makes a joke that he will have to take us out for a beer and we shake hands and all smiles.
Now, I’m not stupid, I know this is not a done deal until I get the call from my solicitor saying it has exchanged, but you couldn’t blame me for thinking that I have done all I needed to do to secure the property!
I call solicitor, who prepares for exchange, then we get the call from the agent.
"I’m sorry but the vendor has exchanged with the other party”
WTF??? I spat the dummy and spent the rest of the day on the phone to the agent and principal and anyone else who would listen to me going off!

After signing our contract somehow the seller was then handed another contract from the other interested party with an identical amount and terms (no lengthy settlement as I was told), they chose the other party because "they have been negotiating for longer"

I believe my biggest mistake was NOT dealing with the listing agent. The agent we dealt with just happened to be the agent who called me back after I left a message with reception expressing my interest in the property and requesting an inspection.

ALWAYS INSIST ON DEALING WITH THE LISTING AGENT!!!

I think, what has happened is that I was used (abused) to push the other buyer over the line. I think the “Listing” agent found out that my offer had been accepted and then quickly intervened by calling her buyer and vendor and making sure that the vendor accepted the other guys offer because that meant she would get the full commission and wouldn’t have to split it!
The sad thing is I was prepared to go higher if given the chance so the seller has been left short too!

Anyways, its not over, 5 days and only a few k is on the line for them until them. Them the boots on the other foot! :)

Cheers
Greg
 
I believe my biggest mistake was NOT dealing with the listing agent. I think, what has happened is that I was used (abused) to push the other buyer over the line. I think the “Listing” agent found out that my offer had been accepted and then quickly intervened by calling her buyer and vendor and making sure that the vendor accepted the other guys offer because that meant she would get the full commission and wouldn’t have to split it!

Yep, that is pretty much my assessment too. :(

However, selling agents in the same agency can pull the same stunt. So you just have to cover all your bases.

Sometimes agents & clients (some) think I am paranoid by the amount of trouble I go to and the lengths I go to, to get an exchange to happen. But cases like yours just go to show it ain't exchanged 'till it's exchanged (and even then........) ;)
 
The agent I was dealing with is from the same agency, same office.

So, I was with the listing "Agency" but NOT with the listing "Agent"

Just thought Id clarify that.

I'm wondering at what point is an agent NOT allowed to accept further offers/contracts? IS it once contracts have been signed, but not yet exchanged or is it at exchange?

Thanks
 
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The agent I was dealing with is from the same agency, same office.So, I was with the listing "Agency" but with the listing "Agent" Just thought Id clarify that.
I understood that to be the case :)

I'm wondering at what point is an agent NOT allowed to accept further offers/contracts? IS it once contracts have been signed, but not yet exchanged or is it at exchange?

Only at the point where purchaser signs their copy (of the contract) AND pays 0.25% to the agent AND the vendor signs their copy (of the contract) AND the vendor (or the vendor's legal representative) is handed the signed purchaser's copy AND the purchaser (or the purchaser's legal representative) is handed the signed vendor's copy are the contracts considered "exchanged". ONLY then can you breath a sigh of relief.........and only then for 5 business days. :)
 
You may have been used - you may not have - let me explain....

By the sounds of it the other purchase had made an offer that was accepted and properly signed a contract and paid a deposit - the only sticking point was the settlement period.


You become interested in the property and the agent tells you the situation (maybe) and you play the game and submit a contract and deposit that you and the agent believe will secure you the property.


Now here comes the problem....

In NSW the agent MUST notify the other purchaser that a higher offer has been made (see below), and if the agent told you how much there offer was then the agent would most likely also tell the other purchaser the details of your offer.

The agent then presents both offers to the vendor and the vendor decides which one is the lucky one.






PROPERTY, STOCK AND BUSINESS AGENTS REGULATION 2003 - SCHEDULE 2

Clause 5

(3) The agent must promptly inform the person who paid the deposit when the agent becomes aware of any subsequent offer to purchase the property received from any other person. The agent must also advise the person who paid the deposit that they have the right to make further offers up until exchange of contracts has taken place.
 
I'm sorry to hear your news, Gregory.

I haven't bought in Sydney for years. Give me Queensland Contracts any day. :)

Regards JO
 
Just drop a short note in the vendors letter box thanking them for the consideration of your offer. While you weren't given the opportunity to increase your offer, which you would have, you wish them all the best.
 
The sad thing is I was prepared to go higher if given the chance

....but you were given a chance, you just chose not to take it.


so the seller has been left short too!

No - incorrect - the Seller chose the best of the two that was presented to them. The Seller had no idea you were playing silly buggers, were prepared to pay more but didn't indicate that on the paperwork submitted for their review.


The rest of your post is just noise because you are frustrated with yourself and looking for any dog to kick. No one to blame but yourself.
 
The Seller had no idea you were playing silly buggers, were prepared to pay more but didn't indicate that on the paperwork submitted for their review.
How is this "playing silly buggers"?

Do you advocate offering top dollar as the opening play?

And who is ever going to write on an offer "I'm offering $X but I'm prepared to pay more"? :rolleyes: What should he have put on the paperwork?

I'm very interested to hear how you think Gregory H should have played this situation. (Seriously, I'm sure it'll be informative. :))
 
Verify EVERYTHING !!!

Just drop a short note in the vendors letter box thanking them for the consideration of your offer. While you weren't given the opportunity to increase your offer, which you would have, you wish them all the best.

Great point 2BW.

First of all, this may just create the rapport you need if that contract falls over...........and you never know. Never burn bridges, not even wit the rea. Could help to leave just a mobile contact also. You never, ever know who the vendor was and if they have any other properties or who they know, and who they know might know.........You get my drift.

Gregory,

always believe and trust :rolleyes: what you are told however reserve the right to verify EVERYTHING and I mean everything. ;)

My time line for a vendor to accept or reject a contract and my offer is usually in the order of a few hours (on one occasion 30 minutes). You must make it sound very urgent to the rea that you are also considering multiple properties and that this is merely a commodity that meets your criteria at the price you've offered.

Once you are told that an offer has been accepted you can do one of two things, however both involve verification IN WRITING!!!!

1. Ask for the countersigned contract with the vendor(s) signature(s) to be faxed to you immediately.

2. If they dilly dally and you're concerned, then physically go the office (as logistics and your locationa allow and pick up a copy.

Do not merely rely on "the spoken word", and that the agent will arrange exchange with your solicitor. Get involved yourself. I've been transacting for over 20 years and this is the only way I move forward now.

Physical sighting of as many signatures are required by the vendors or Co directors or whomever are the signatories.....all of them.

Disappointing for you on this occasion.............learn this lesson and get out there and find some more properties. The more you get out there the more deals will cross your path...........fail forward and good luck :)
 
....but you were given a chance, you just chose not to take it.

No - incorrect - the Seller chose the best of the two that was presented to them. The Seller had no idea you were playing silly buggers, were prepared to pay more but didn't indicate that on the paperwork submitted for their review.

The rest of your post is just noise because you are frustrated with yourself and looking for any dog to kick. No one to blame but yourself.

I was not given a chance at all. I made my offer, was told they would accept it, then told they had accepted it. Next thing Im told is that its sold to the other party. Ive never seen an offer that says Ill pay $xxxxx, but Ill pay more if you want me to? The truth is, I was prepared to pay more, at NO time did I ever say anything like" This is my final offer" .

I have the cash, the agents know that, the other party is still looking for finance. If I was the vendors in this deal and I knew what has transpired I would be very upset with my agent! They now have a purchaser who is still looking for finance to pay a smaller amount than I was prepared to pay. At the same time they have upset the only other party that was interested in the property and when/if it falls over and I get the call from the agent....my offer is not going to be the same now is it!
 
I’ve been interested in a property for a few weeks. I have had two inspections and had a final look on Thursday. The agent I had been dealing with from the real estate agency (which turned out not to be the listing agent but from the same agency) tells me about another interested buyer, who has been negotiating for a few weeks, looking for an extended settlement. He told us there was an offer, which has been agreed to BUT not signed yet, still negotiating settlement terms I believe I was told.


Just quietly, if you knew that there was another party interested - who have already made an offer - and you were being told what their terms were... you would then have to expect that they would be told about your offer as well?

As Dazz suggested, you were given an opportunity to pay what you thought the property was worth; you offered less, instead, and in the end the deal was done by someone else. This is real estate.

Perhaps the sales agent that you dealt with was out of line by telling you that it was exchanged, when in fact it wasn't. Unfortunately, that is completely irrelevant; what they said doesn't change what actually happened and at the end of the day, you simply didn't offer enough to secure the deal.

I understand your frustration. Particularly in NSW, this sort of thing is not uncommon. All I can suggest is that instead of wasting your energy and emotion by fuming over this one that got away, you learn from the experience... and buy something else.
 
How is this "playing silly buggers"?

Do you advocate offering top dollar as the opening play?

And who is ever going to write on an offer "I'm offering $X but I'm prepared to pay more"? :rolleyes: What should he have put on the paperwork?


Looks like I'm coming from a different frame of reference to you ozperp.


I look at purchasing property like this.....I would prefer to do massive amounts of research, determine the best property to buy and then pay a fair price to secure it.....rather than do a bit of research and plonk down any old offer and TRY and secure an average property for a bargain. There is a big difference between the two.


My point is, that the amount of research done involves you alot and it takes so much time and energy to get to that point with another property after sifting through 100's of dross, it is foolish to "play silly buggers" once you have found a property that meets your criteria.


If you are just trying to pick up a townhouse in a row of 15, well fair enough, drop a low contract and try your luck - but don't expect a good outcome, either with securing it or having crackingly good growth 20 years hence.


The other thing is that I haven't purchased a property since '04 using any method other than a closed (blind) tender where the Seller has 100% of the power and simply chooses the best offer....usually the cleanest contract offered.


You get one chance with this method, and by golly you put your best foot forward. With a research file 4 inches thick compiled over 4 months of hard slog, you don't stuff around by offering a low bid, knowing that you would have paid more but wanted to see if you could pick it up for a bargain.


Look - if ol' Greg had of been chosen by the Seller, he would of been on here gloating that he had picked up a screaming bargain and he was prepared to pay more but "got away with a much lower offer". But he didn't get away with it, and he's a little peeved that the Seller chose someone else. Whether they go unconditional with it is yet to be seen, but the material point is that Greg is now sidelined out of the race.


The only real question is - what is he going to do next time around ??


IMO - cos he is trying to put the blame onto everyone else instead of accepting 100% responsibility for his actions on himself, he'll probably do exactly the same thing next time.
 
Thanks, Dazz, for explaining where you're coming from. I agree that asset selection is far more important than getting a bargain, but in fairness, I don't get the impression that Greg was trying to low-ball; he was simply trying to secure the property at the lowest price that was acceptable to the vendor.

This "playing silly buggers" is pretty much inevitable when properties are for sale via private treaty, and is prompted by the unethical but common practise of telling person A about person B's offer, to get person A to offer more, then going back to person B with that higher offer, etc. :mad: It's both unethical and produces a sub-optimal outcome for the vendor. Once they've gotten to this point, where two or more parties are interested, I think the strategy that is both ethical and most likely to produce the optimal outcome for the vendor is to move to a tender situation. Tell both parties to submit their best offer by COB tomorrow, at which point the vendor chooses between the offers.

But, Greg, the more I think about it, the less empathetic I feel (sorry!). If your offer had been accepted and exchanged at the same price as the first bidder but with a shorter settlement, wouldn't the first bidder have been just as entitled to feel ripped off? They could be on here saying: "but we would have matched Greg's shorter settlement terms if we'd known it was necessary to secure the deal!" ;)
 
So your saying that, after 3 months of hard slog research you decide to buy and you have a price in mind, lets say for Example: $900k. Just before you put your offer in, your agent tells you "The vendor will accept $875k, exchange today"

Then, you offer will be .... ???

With your logic, it seems you will place an offer of $900k

Anything less than YOU are playing silly buggers ??

Sure there is a known other party involved, but if your being told you can buy it for $875k why would you throw 25k away ?

Well..... I think I know your answer to that... "To secure the property at a price I know is fair from all the research I did"

Well said! :)

Thanks for your point of view, it is appreciated.

Ill letyas know what happens if anyones interested :)
 
Just before you put your offer in, your agent tells you


The agent isn't "yours". The agent is a paid representative of your contractual adversary.

What s/he tells you....or even writes to you....doesn't mean diddly squat and you cannot rely on it one iota. Says so on all of their pamphlets.
 
The agent isn't "yours". The agent is a paid representative of your contractual adversary.

What s/he tells you....or even writes to you....doesn't mean diddly squat and you cannot rely on it one iota. Says so on all of their pamphlets.

Yes, you are right of course. My error.

However, you didn't answer my question re my hypothetical, would you offer 875k or your planned 900k still, if "the" agent told you the Vendor will accept it?

I assume that you would offer 900k still, but I want to hear you say it! :)
 
maybe its just me (with a sales background), but I think its clear based on what greg (our only resourse) is saying, that the REA was not wanting to split the commission. Salespeople are very greedy when commission is involved, and will lie and cheat to get it. NOt always, but it happens often enough.
 
maybe its just me (with a sales background), but I think its clear based on what greg (our only resourse) is saying, that the REA was not wanting to split the commission. Salespeople are very greedy when commission is involved, and will lie and cheat to get it. NOt always, but it happens often enough.

I agree with this.

But as a side note forgetting the REA's for a moment - If I were the vendor and had been dealing with a prospective purchaser for a good amount of time (as in this situation) - I would have used the new 'bidder' as leverage and a bargaining tool, but at the end of the day, unless the new player was able to offer significantly more then the original purchaser, I would most likely feel a 'moral' obligation to go with the first purchaser. Does that make sense?
 
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