Part Time Sellers? Part Time Buyers?

Are you a part time seller or a part time b
uyer? Of course not. When you're looking to sell or find a new home, there is no half way about it.

Let me share a story that will demonstrate the possible liability of using a part time agent. Recently I sold a condo just north of Toronto.

When I received the offer, I was surprised to see that the buyer had excluded all the stainless steel appliances, window coverings, and light fixtures.  Although not common, occasionally buyers want to purchase their own items, and don't want any "used" chattels at all. In this case, this exclusion
totalled about $9000 worth of of washers, dryers, fridges, stoves, dishwashers and light fixures for the entire home. I suspected that the agent made a mistake and excluded all these items in error. Perhaps the agent had intended to include them in the offer?

Acting as the agent for the seller, I explained the offer as it was submitted, and explained that my client was in a position to keep all the appliances for her next home. This was ideal since she was building a new house, and would need to purchase new appliances when the project was completed. We discussed the possibility that this was anerror on the part of the buyer's agent, and that it was likely a major oversight.

My client (such a lovely lady!) decided that rather than accepting the offer as written, she directed me to verify whether the buyers really wanted to exclude all the appliances etc.

Sure enough, the agent had excluded all chattels in error and her clients wanted every inclusion. She suddenly realized that the seller was in a position to accept the offer and keep close to $10,000 in appliances. I am certain that the agent would have been held liable for this mistake, and would have to pay for all the missing items.


Now, a $10,000 error can be corrected with some effort, but there many liabilities involved in Real Estate transactions. I have to ask people who are using part-time agents: What part of professional service is not important?

For a list of important questions to ask an agent before hiring them, check out my blog on Interview Questions!