Insulating Against A Law Suit

Generally most of my posts are adaptable to sales in any industry. Today I am specifically addressing real estate sales. If someone practices real estate very long, they will face legal issues; especially if they sell a lot of real estate. There is a very simple explanation for it too. It’s impossible to please everyone, and especially, if you represent both the buyer and the seller. In this type situation the buyer feels like the seller took advantage of them, while the seller feels like the buyer took advantage of them. As a Realtor® who is wedged between both parties thinking the agent showed partiality to the other party in the transaction. To complicate matters worse, in a typical real estate sales transaction there are numerous entities that have specific requirements and guidelines that must be followed.

Managing Your Risks

Generally most of my posts are adaptable to sales in any industry. Today I am specifically addressing real estate sales. If someone practices real estate very long, they will face legal issues; especially if they sell a lot of real estate. There is a very simple explanation for it too. It’s impossible to please everyone, and especially, if you represent both the buyer and the seller. In this type situation the buyer feels like the seller took advantage of them, while the seller feels like the buyer took advantage of them. As a Realtor® who is wedged between both parties thinking the agent showed partiality to the other party in the transaction. To complicate matters worse, in a typical real estate sales transaction there are numerous entities that have specific requirements and guidelines that must be followed.

In most real estate sale transactions there are two separate agencies involved. 

More times than not one agency will have the listing and represent the seller while the other agency will represent the buyer. [Read more…]

Gratification of A Real Estate Career

Gratification is the reward beyond income

earned by a real estate agent for providing consumers quality service. I believe gratification to be an intangible, internal feeling of accomplishment for helping someone beyond fiduciary duties. More times than not, the consumer don’t even realize the magnitude of service you have provided because it wasn’t openly discussed. For example, people I have represented in the sale of their property that were financially distressed. They were head over heels in debt, couldn’t make their monthly payments, and were exponentially getting deeper in debt with the passing of every day. Helping them get released from their financial obligations and get into a position to reestablish their credit rating was gratifying to me. [Read more…]

How Much Earnest Money Is Acceptable?

When is enough, enough?

When it comes to selling real estate there is no standard, acceptable amount of earnest money to accompany an offer. First let’s examine what earnest money is. Earnest money is also referred to as “good faith” money. In other words, it is a payment made by the buyer at the time an offer to purchase is written that demonstrates to the seller, they fully intend to close on the sale of the property. The buyer is saying, “I’m really interested and if I change my mind and decide not to close this transaction, for any reason other than certain contingencies specified within the purchase agreement, I understand I will forfeit my earnest money.” Earnest money, or good faith money, is held in escrow until closing, at which time is applied to the total purchase price.

In Alabama, an offer to purchase is not binding on either party (the buyer nor seller) until the offer has been accepted by the other party. For practical purposes let’s assume the buyer is making an offer to purchase. EXAMPLE; A potential buyer and their agent views a property listed for sale at $225,000. The buyers want to write an offer for $200,000. The agent representing the buyer asks them for $1,000 earnest money. Is this a sufficient amount?

[Read more…]