Profile picture for taza
  • taza
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Our own Realtor screwed us over - what should we do?

We are newbies in AZ area.

We lost earnest money of $2,500  because our own realtor was not actively monitoring and the seller agent took advantage of this and claimed that we are not closing the home in time and hence he is canceling. As with any realtor, we trusted this person to be our ears and eyes as well as do her realtor service. In fact, we were the one who pointed out to her that this home is back on sale  and we need an explanation. We also gathered additional information why this is happening - this realtor (I will be more than happy to give her first name and last name for interested parties - avoid working with her) said, "this is news to me".

She in turn, actively pursued obtaining our signature on the cancellation note, hence sealing the doors to working further on this home.We are extremely dissatisfied with this person, her work ethics and betrayal of our trust.

We lost the home (which is still very shocking - we really needed this home) as well as lost about 3% of the home's value as escrow money. We are mentally very hurt about all of this. What are my choices here? Also, I do not want her doing any reality business anymore - she could hurt more family's feelings at the least - who should I complain? 
  • March 01 2011 - Peoria
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Answers (13)

Speak with the broker. If your case was truly mishandled, they may compensate you for your lost earnest money.
  • March 02 2011
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Profile picture for blue screen exile
Another thing you can do is "buy a screw driver and drink it", or even use it to repair your car or something in your house.

If you "needed" the home, you wouldn't have ignored deadline dates and would have filed the extensions and made sure they were signed and accepted by the other party.  And if you had a loan funding contingency and couldn't close on time due to the loan, you would have been able to use that contingency to have the escrow money released back to you on the termination of the contract agreement.

How can anyone "need" a "specific" home?  Aren't there thousands out there, including rentals?
  • March 02 2011
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Hi,

The only thing you really can do is to file a complaint with the real estate division in Arizona.  I used to be licensed there and this might be helpful http://www.re.state.az.us/Inv/Forms/Form_INV-800_Request_For_Investigation.pdf

Sorry for the troubles you went through.  Hope you find some kind of resolve.
  • March 02 2011
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I don't get it, I'm not so smart in figuring this out. Right now all I see is that you signed  a contract agreeing to close by a certain date, and you didn't close by that date. 

There has to be more to this. Why didn't you settle by the date you agreed?
  • March 02 2011
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Call the agent's broker immediately and try to find out what really happened first.

I noticed this is an Arizona inquiry so, If you still feel wronged, contact the Arizona Association of REALTORS®. Their website has some great advice for this situation.


  • March 02 2011
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The problem is we don't have enough information to give you the perfect answer. I suggest you call the Realtor's office and get in touch with the broker.

When you call you don't need to mention your Realtor's name to the person that answers the phone. Just call and tell the receptionist that you would like to talk to the broker about a problem you have with one of the broker's Realtors prior to filing a complaint. No broker wants complaints filed as this draws negative attention on their brokerage. By using this method you'll get a returned call promptly.

As other people have said above you want to have your facts straight before you call the broker. Have the sales contract in your hands. Bullet-point what you think your Realtor did wrong.

The reality is nobody likes to lose money and when people lose money it is a normal human reaction to get upset. Be careful that you're not transferring your frustration with yourself to your Realtor. This happens all the time.

And again I don't know all the details so I'm not saying you've done anything wrong. I'm also not saying your Realtor did anything wrong. I don't know. But the broker should get to the bottom of it quickly. This is part of their job.

I wish you luck and resolution to your escrow dispute.
  • March 01 2011
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Profile picture for Connie Klemme

Just a note on Wet Dawgs comment, it is good advice to be careful about sharing the name.  I am not claiming to speak for Wet Dawgs because what he/she meant and what I'm saying might not be the same thing, but what you don't want to do is create risk for yourself by seemlingly slandering the agent instead of following proper processes for corrective action, especially if it appears to be anonymous and then is traced to you.  That won't benefit you and will create a big headache for you more so than for them.  However a well founded complaint that is appropriately taken to the broker and local board/state licencing agency will be taken very seriously.  Start with the broker- give them a chance to take action.  then go up from there.  the broker must give you board contact information, also in your contract it more than likely identified the name of the board of which the agent is a member.  start with those things.

  • March 01 2011
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I would strongly urge you to call your agent's office and ask to speak with the Designated Broker.  Then, if you do not receive satisfaction from her broker, you are free to contact the local board of Realtors to which she belongs.  If you're still not satisfied, then contact the Arizona Department of Real Estate.

As has been pointed out, you'll no doubt need to be able to produce accurate notes of conversations and events, copies of all documents in the transaction, copies of emails, etc.

Best of luck to you!
  • March 01 2011
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Profile picture for Jesse Madison
First you need to write down everything that happened and dates...you need to have a record of what happened. With time this timeline could get cloudy. Then speak to the broker and see if the agent was negligent. If  so you can file a grievance with the local board of realtors and escalate the matter to the state ( CAR). But start with the broker and be sure that you are clear on what happened. You need to pay attention to the timelines in the contract and the procedures you need to carry out to extend timelines and resolve issues related to delays in closing. You may have a legitimate claim to your deposit still.
You can also contact a real estate attorney if you have questions. But until you are sure it is the agent's negligence that caused the loss of your deposit you should refrain from using their name.
  • March 01 2011
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Profile picture for taza
  • taza
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"You do not wish to spread the agent's name anonymously because accusations of slander are not pretty". I agree with you - Slander is not pretty

All I can tell you is, you have no idea how hurt we are - you can only understand if you and your family got hurt this bad! I will still hand out this person's name at the blink of my eye so that nobody else also goes through this.
  • March 01 2011
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Profile picture for blue screen exile
You can file a complaint with the local board, and also with the agent's broker, but if you signed the release of the escrow money, it doesn't sound like you have much hope of any fair hearing.

And normally, you would put in contingencies to cover such issues in your offer.

Remember, just because someone pays dues to NAR doesn't mean they are ethical.  You still need to do the analysis of potential representation and potential purchases yourself.
  • March 01 2011
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Profile picture for Connie Klemme
You should bring it to the broker first.  Next options are the local board and the state licensing commission. 
  • March 01 2011
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
When one puts together a purchase offer and contract, there is a timeline of events that must happen.   Only a tiny percentage of this timeline is the responsibility of the agent. 

You may wish to discuss the specifics of the activities with the agent's broker, or take it to a real estate agent.  Make sure you have excellent documentation.   You do not wish to spread the agent's name anonymously because accusations of slander are not pretty.
  • March 01 2011
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