Profile picture for Rachel.Thomas

Is it unethical for a SS agent to tell clients the amount of offers received?

Our agent put in an offer for a SS (120 days- 370 days total on market).  The listed price is 524K- we offered 451K.  When the seller's agent received the offer, he actually laughed out loud at my agent and said, "I told you the offer had to be at or above 500K to be accepted".  Our agent felt ridiculed and told us she thought we low balled the offer.  I know the SS seller's agent has a responsibility to his client but I believe he is attempting to get us to offer more for this home by telling each buyer what other buyers have offered.  Is this unethical?  Even for the sake of saving his client's home or making a larger commision?  What recourse do we have?  How do we know our offer was actually submitted?  How do I know he will not tell other potential buyers what I have offered?

  • September 15 2009 - Layton
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Answers (5)

Its never a good idea, but In short sale situation its less of an issue. In a non-short sale situation.  This would definitely be a BIG problem
  • September 16 2009
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The listing agent did not act unethical by conveying the minimum amount that might be considered. They did their job. I agree they might have handled their repsonse to your agent a bit more friendly, but then again your poor "ridiculed" agent might have kept her "feelings" out of it unless of course the intention was to cloud your judgement.
  • September 16 2009
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Profile picture for blank screen EXILED
So, it costs the lender about $60k to foreclose?  And they believe the property will easily appraise at $550k?  The will get more of their outstanding loan paid off with a foreclosure than with your offer price.  Sure, it costs them something to hold onto the property, but not as much as you wanted them to discount it.

The lenders only do a short sale if it produces more revenue than a foreclosure.  And if there are 2nd and 3rd loans on the property that would completely lose out in a short sale?  They may not allow the short sale unless they are given something.

Really, the key is the appraised value.  And if they are asking for more than appraised value, you either wait for the value to decline to ask again, OR, you look for another property.


(And I though SS stood for "social security"...):
  • September 16 2009
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
"I told you the offer had to be at or above 500K to be accepted" is not telling you what someone else offered.    It is telling you a minimum amount.

A short sale must be approved by the bank, in addition to the seller.  This is the huge elephant in the room and it won't go away.  Remember, the bank is already losing money to have said a house can go to short sale.   A good short sale agent may have a clue on what the bank will accept.   The bank doesn't have to accept any offer and even with full price or offers above full price will take forever to get back to the seller.

I don't see anything unethical in the behavior because he's not told you what anyone has offered (if there are any offers).  Perhaps there is some rudeness, which is rude, but not unethical.

"how do I know he will not tell other potential buyers what you've offered".  Well, as he has not told you what another buyer has offered, why do you think he will change his tune now?



  • September 15 2009
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Profile picture for bagnn
Listing agent might had other offers rejected and probably he has been told other times, that 500k is the magical number.

If you agent knows about that number, I think it should try to get very close or at least match it.

As a listing agent, when I know the "right" number and the buyer walk away, now is my duty to find a buyer willing to pay the approved sales price.

I had a listing that Sort Sale negotiator call Insuficient two offers and everytime, make me start from scratch. Like it was a new offer.
I submitted two offers from the same buyer (not my buyer) below, way below Approved short sale price.

I don't think the listing agent is trying to get more money, the listing agent just do not want to work in something he has been told, it is not going to be approved.

Offers are submitted only if the offer is signed by the seller(s).

As long as the names are not disclose, what would be the issue? It is part of saying to other agents, please offer "X" amount.

Potential buyers are only the ones willing to offer 500k in this case. Based on your posting.

Buy!
  • September 15 2009
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