July 25, 2007, 6:00 am

Selling my House, Quite an Experience Part 2

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Properties
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In my previous post about selling my house, I explained my experience with Realtors of this world and how it got more complicated and longer than solving a 10,000 pieces puzzle. Today, I will be writing about how fast an easy it was to sell to of my parents’ property and complicated to by the next property with a real estate agent. According to my opinion, with little researches and little money, anybody can sell their house without an agent.

First things, first, a little bit of my parents’ history in the housing market; since the early 80’s they have bought and sold about 12 properties. They used to buy a house, renovate it, live in it for about a year or so and sell it. They were getting the biggest part of their income from this process. With the first 10 properties, they were dealing with the same real estate agent. A great complicity had grown up and they were all making good money out of this relationship.

About 10 years ago, they decided once again to put their house for sale. They signed the same agent as usual for a period of 3 months. During this period of time, almost nothing happened. They had about 3 visits and no offer on the table. Definitely, there was nothing to get excited about. As Christmas was coming, they decided to celebrate without any bugs and get the house out of the market. Spring season arrived and their friend/agent was on vacation for two months. My parents wanted to start looking for new house right away and decided to try to sell their house by themselves.

Only 3 days after they put the house on the market, someone knocked on their door without a notice, visited the same day and made the offer at the end of the day. My parent didn’t even use internet back then! On top of saving 5% on 135K ($6,750 plus taxes), they sold the house 10K more than the agent told them to sell at. Therefore, without any effort, they mad $16,750 more that if they would have sold their property 6 months before with a real estate agent.

They quickly turn around and made an offer on a riverside property. They had previously visited this property while they were with their friend/agent six month ago. They ask the agent that was selling the property if it was make any difference and he assured that everything is in order and that they could purchase this house without giving anything back to their friend. Man, I swear some people don’t know what they are doing!

When their friend came back from vacation, she heard about my parent selling their house and buying the other one without her help (to read: without having her making the sell commission). She then decided to show how a good friend she was by suing my parent for the purchase of the property. My parents thought they were covered as the other agent told them to not worry about it. They went to see a lawyer and discover they deceptive truth: they really owed her commission on the purchase of the property. In the end, they still made more money with the sale of their property even after paying this commission.

With this little piece of life, I do not want to show real estate agents as incompetents individuals or that they are not acting in good faith. I simply wanted to demonstrate that some of them (and this is the same case in any profession) do not really care or understand all legal aspects of a transaction. They are claimed to be professional, but really it requires a 6 months course to obtain their license. It is the exact same situation with financial advisor. Some of them are really good, some others are clowns. In the end, do not foolishly think that you are protected if you are doing business with a real estate agent. They are less responsible for legal issue than you might think.



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Good post, and I see the agent sueing your parents when you wrote that seller’s agent said not to worry.

I am tempted to sell my own house next time
If I do it for rental, why not for house as well, especially if the location/house sells itself

Buying I’m okay with my good agent, she has great taste

by: The Financial Blogger | July 25th, 2007 (2:52 pm)

Hi Jerry,
I think that there is a big difference when you sell and when you buy with an agent as when you buy, you do not have to pay commission. In addition to that, the agent is sure to make money when you are looking to buy as he does not have to disburse money upfront for promotion. The agent just have to look out for properties that fit your taste.

Hello. We are “roommates” on Plonkee’s recent carnival. You raise a good point because people need to know when they have an “exclusivity” law or contract, which prevents the seller from stealing the agent’s leads to avoid commission payment but also means that you can do all the selling but still have to pay the realty agent for doing nothing.

by: The Financial Blogger | July 30th, 2007 (9:19 pm)

Hello “roommate” 😛
Be sure to read all the fine prints in the contract. And never ask another agent if you should be alright or not. Lawyers are there for that (and will surely there to charge you as well :grin:).

[…] selling my house, quite an experience part 2 @ the financial blogger, having just completed my first home purchase I not looking forward to selling yet […]