Selling or buying a house can be an exciting as well as a stressful situation because it is a serious life changing decision for both parties (seller / buyer). Because once agreed upon and contracts are signed, both parties participating in this trade cannot easily change their mind as its not easy as returning products you may have purchased at a department store.
Wanting to ensure that the right decisions are being made and that the best outcomes are achieved both for the seller and the purchaser, we have to be aware of, and also be better informed about the common unethical behaviors of a real estate agent.
As you know that the real estate agents are there to serve as a middleman during the property selling and purchasing process, and vast majority of estate agents are reputable companies serving their local communities as best as they can. However, unfortunately, there are some agents that make the sales process a nightmare experience for their clients by often going against the originally agreed plan with the vendor. To avoid being ensnared by an unethical real estate agent, you need to perform due diligence, and also ensure that you are working with a real estate agent with good references and a proven track record.
There is however common patterns amongst unethical real estate agents, and we’d like to inform you about few of them:
Avoid Estate Agents Lying About Their Experience and Credentials
Experience and reputation gets you clients and real estate agents know this. Some will work their way to the top slowly by providing great customer service with high performance, while others will want to get there fast by lying in order to build their business and clientele. Do not rely solely on an agent’s word about their credentials. Do your own background research, ask them for proof and try to reach out to their references when possible.
Agents Asking for Large Commission and Payment Before Selling
All businesses would love to be paid in advance, but this is not the case for types of businesses which usually get paid on commission basis, since real estate agents usually get paid on commission basis, when an agent asks for large amounts of commissions before even agreeing on the sales process, simply stop dealing with them. Because having already collected money from you, they may walk away with something whether or not the sale goes well. In the case that the sale does not go as planned, the real estate agent still leaves with your money when clearly they didn’t deserve it.
Collecting Two Payments on a Single Sale
Many real estate agents are only concerned with getting the best possible results for their clients, whether their client is the property seller who wants to get the highest possible price for their property, or whether the estate agent’s client is the buyer who is looking to find a bargain. Ethical real estate agents will perform their duties as best as possible for either case.
Some agents on the other hand, may do the double dipping, meaning, they will quote you less than the market value of your property (in case you are a seller) while already have agreed with the buyer or developer to get higher commissions from them for finding cheaper quoted piece of real estate. The buyer in the scenario is either their friends or the agent having some sort of business interests with these types of buyers. They have an advantage in this situation because they have control of the sale and can make decisions to suit their benefit. Meaning, they will complete the sale and get commission from you, as well as get paid from the buyer for finding below market priced property.
Offering a Lower Price to Many Buyers
Some unethical estate agents will try almost anything to get interested buyers for the sale of your home. One strategy is to make an offer to many different interested buyers, but do so significantly less than what you as the seller wanted for your home. Since you are usually absent during these discussions real estate agents have with potential buyers, the realtor can easily convince the buyer that you as the seller might drop the price. This practice has a tendency of creating a pool of interested buyers for your home. To carry out the sale quickly, the real estate agent may dishonestly reassure you that there is a good reason for all these lower priced offers and will try to convince you to get the sale closed with a lesser value than originally agreed upon.
Disclosure of Private Information
As you know that we Aussies treat the handling of our privacy very seriously, in the real estate industry, it unlawful and unethical to share private information of your clients. But many unethical real estate agents share information they have on their client if they believe that it will be beneficial for the sale. They will provide relevant information about their client’s family, career or even their private health records to other parties so that the sale might move along quicker. Unfortunately this is also a common unethical practice.
References, word of mouth feedbacks from family and friends are always a good way to ensure whether or not a real estate agent is possibly one of those that conduct unethical practices to get a sale done.
Our team at Perfect Agent conducts vigorous checks before working with reputable real estate agents, and we simply make sure that our valued clients can find licensed estate agents quickly and easily using our website. Should you have any questions, concerns or experience dealing with unethical agents, simply contact us as we’d be more than happy to assist you and point you in the right direction.
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