Thursday, September 22, 2011

Should I dump my agent or hang on?

Dear Sunnyview,
I am preapproved and have been looking for a house with an agent for about 2 months. When I first signed up with her, she was very responsive. I could get in touch with her easily, but now she's like a ghost. There is a house that I want to make an offer on, but I don't know if I should use her or not. She hasn't returned my phone calls after 2 days. I'm afraid that I'll lose out on the house. Should I make the offer with another agent?
-Unsure in UT

Dear Unsure,
First of all, I have to say that your agent may have a legitimate reason for being out of contact. Agents are people too. If your agent has been responsive in the past, but is not now I would contact her broker directly and tell him or her that you have not been able to contact your agent. Include details of your attempted contact times and dates in the email. Just make sure that when you send the request to send yourself a bcc so that you have a record of it. A good broker will contact the agent for you or assign another agent in the same office to immediately take you on as a client. That new agent will be able to help you make an offer on the house you are looking at.

If you signed a buyers representation agreement and you do not want to use another agent in that office, you would need to get a signed release from the agent or their broker to terminate the contract before you proceed with another agent. The agent not contacting you in a reasonable time frame would be the reason for terminating the agreement.   Making an offer with another agent without a signed release could mean you wold be liable for paying your old agent a commission even if they do not represent you in the deal. Read your contract and be sure to legally cut ties with your old agent before you find another. If you have another agent in mind, sometimes the new agent's broker can also help you get a release from the agreement with old broker.

As a client, you hired your agent to represent and assist you in your real estate transaction. If she is not doing what you hired her to do, you may need to cut ties and use another agent. Just make sure to get your ducks in a row before you do to avoid trouble later on.

All the best,

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