Do sellers deserve to be asked or do realtors just grant permission?

By
Managing Real Estate Broker with Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions"

I work both sides of transactions, usually not at the same time!  I see things happen that I am shocked and surprised with from time to time. 

This just happened and I was stunned.  We do not have a executed agreement.  One is in the works at the counter offer stage.  The seller is traveling out of state so the buyer asks the sellers agent if they can have access to the property to measure and bring in a decorator.  The agent responded, "sure just make sure the lights are out and the property is locked when you leave".

Now the neighbor calls the sellers and says, "hey you have six cars at your house the garage doors are open, people are coming and going is your home sold"?  No we are still negotiating and have a counter offer in the works nothing is finalized.  So she calls the Realtor and says do we have a showing?  No, responds her agent.  The buyers wanted to show a few friends and bring by a decorator....I told them it was OK you were out of town.  I will swing buy and make  sure the lights are off and everything is locked.  The agents says, "don't worry everything is OK.

security sign  The seller said it is not OK if you would have asked me I would have said "NO".  They have not bought the house and we do not have a completed contract. 

I know the seller personally and was present during this conversation.  The seller is out of state away on a family emergency and people are in her house.  They have expensive cars and the garage doors are open...why? Who knows the sellers agents sure doesn't what is going on.  The seller said, "I wished I had a shock collar to get his attention, then he would learn to pay attention to who he represents".  I thought that was a very good observation.  The agent represents the seller not the transaction.  The obligation is to the client and then to make sure the transaction is completed in the best interest of the seller.

Do you let buyers roam property when you have not completed the contract?  I find that buyers may see things they may not like and could backout of the contract since it is not fully executed.  Or the buyers could ask for an addendum to make changes since the contract is still open.  The other issue is I do not want to be liable for any damages that may occur to the property because I authorized access without the sellers knowledge or approval.

I ask my sellers in advance how to handle issues if they are out of town.  Not all agents have common sense, so sellers will have to go by how much they trust the agents representation before they release all their rights.

How would you handle a situation like this?  This seller put a fax in writing and said ask permission before granting access to anyone other than a showing to sell when they are out of town.

Do you do this?

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Tags:
getting sellers approval before anyone views property
do sellers deserve to be asked
who protects the sellers

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Rainmaker
1,072,243
Gary White~Grand Rapids Home Selling Pro Call: 616-821-9375
Real Estate Services You can Trust!
Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions"
Hi Keith, the neighbors called when they saw 7 cars parked on the lawn and driveway.  The garage door was up people roaming around.  They were concerned and surprised so they called the sellers to see what was up.  The neighbor knew the sellers were out of town.  The sellers were pretty surprised to find out that their agent had given permission without concern that the contract had not been formalized.  The other area of concern was the buyers were at the property without supervision.  Thanks for the comments Keith.
September 13, 2007 01:27 PM
Rainmaker
1,072,243
Gary White~Grand Rapids Home Selling Pro Call: 616-821-9375
Real Estate Services You can Trust!
Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions"

Hi Brian, smoke cleared from the fire now?  I agree with your assessment.  I would not have granted access without contacting the sellers unless I had already set up a method to handle situations like this.  Un-supervised buyers could see things that may lead them to change a contract and then where would the seller be?  Since the contract is not formalized by the sellers yet another addendum can be written.  Thanks for your comments Brian.

September 13, 2007 01:32 PM
Rainmaker
1,072,243
Gary White~Grand Rapids Home Selling Pro Call: 616-821-9375
Real Estate Services You can Trust!
Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions"
Hi Gita, I have had times where the sellers confidence in my judgement has given me latitudes.  I would never give un-supervised access to any of my clients property.  Thanks for your comments Gita.
September 13, 2007 01:34 PM
Rainmaker
1,072,243
Gary White~Grand Rapids Home Selling Pro Call: 616-821-9375
Real Estate Services You can Trust!
Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions"
Hi Teri, we too have the electronic key box.  The buyers agent was granted permission from the sellers agent without the knowledge of the seller.  The buyers agent then let the buyers in and left.  The sellers agent instructed them to turn off the lights and lock up when they were done.  I have a problem with not asking since the contract issues were not resolved completely.  If everything with the contract had been resolved I do not think the sellers would have had any issues.  Thanks for your comments Teri.
September 13, 2007 01:41 PM
Rainmaker
639,790
Marchel Peterson
Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro
Results Realty

Gary, am I understanding this correctly; the buyer went there with all his friends and family without having an agent present?  I can't believe that the buyer's agent would allow them to go in without him being present.  Even after it is fully executed I am always present when my clients go in to visit the house they are going to buy.

By the way I thought you were on vacation!

September 13, 2007 05:19 PM
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Rainmaker
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