Part Time Sellers? Part Time Buyers?

Are you a part time seller or a part time buyer? Of course not. When you're looking to sell or find a new home, there is no half way about it. So why do people hire Part Time Agents?

(You know them, they are all around us. They are your mechanic, yoga instructor, waitress, or worse your cousin who passed his exams last spring because he didn't know what else to do after college!!!)

With more than 31,000 registrants on the Toronto Real Estate Board, the vast majority of agents don't even write one deal a year. Most of these people are "secret agents", but they are a liability when
they swing into action. 

Let me share a story that will demonstrate the possible liability of using a part time agent.

Recently I sold a property 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 totaled about $10,000 worth of of washers, dryers, fridges, stoves, dishwashers and light fixtures for the entire home. I suspected that the agent had 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 an error 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? There are liabilities that can cost lots of money, aggravation and invaluable time.

For a list of important questions to ask an agent and make sure they are not a Part-Timer before hiring them, check out my blog on Interview Questions!