My listing had an open house that I didn’t attend

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty

I love listing homes and I do a lot of open houses, but I can't do all of them on all my listings as I just wouldn't have time to get them all in even if I did them every weekend, there still wouldn't be enough time in the month to get them all done.

Lucky for me I have great sellers that realize that even if I held the house open every weekend, that probably isn't what is going to sell the house, but it sure can't hurt. Usually an open house is a way to find buyers for a certain neighborhood but really the house you are holding open is only sold at an open house 1 out of about 50 times. For me it is a little higher, but you get my drift.

Blank sign Photo Courtesy of weirdvis

Well, I have a vacant home for sale in a pretty good neighborhood, but it wasn't on my list of homes that I was going to be holding open this last weekend. Then I got a call from an agent who was new to the business. She just got her license last month and worked for a small company that didn't have any listings that the agents wanted held open.

She also knew that this home was vacant and used to be a rental because she lived next door. She had never met the owner, but she loved the neighborhood and knew she could sell it because of her passion for the neighborhood. She wanted to know if she could hold it open even though she worked for a different company.

Now, I know a lot of agents would have had a "BIG NO" waiting for her, but not me. I don't care who sells the house, it is all about the seller and if she wanted to hold the house open or just bring a buyer in that she knew, I saw no difference between the two. It was helping me, by giving exposure on the house, it was helping my seller by hopefully finding a buyer a little quicker and hopefully this new agent found some great buyers at her open house.

What would you have done? Would you have let this new agent that was eager to work hold your house open?



Todd Clark - broker
Kastings & Associates
Phone: (503)524-9494
Fax: (503)622-8739

Posted by


Todd Clark (broker w/ Ken's Home Team)
Keller Williams Realty
Todd@IFoundYourNewHome.com
Phone: (503)524-9494
Fax: (503)746-9573

 

 

 

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 I am a licensed Realtor who specializes in Washington County, Oregon and also work in both Clackamas and Multnomah Counties including the cities of Aloha, Beaverton, Canby, Clackamas, Gladstone, Gresham, Happy Valley, Hillsboro, Milwaukie, Oregon City, Sherwood and Tigard. All information contained in these posts are copyrighted and cannot be used without prior written approval authorization from the author me Todd Clark. If you are looking for an outstanding agent please give me a call I would love to help you with all your real estate needs.

 

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Topic:
Real Estate Sales and Marketing
Location:
Oregon Washington County Beaverton
Groups:
Addicted to Active Rain
Almost Anything Goes
Dedicated Bloggers
It's all about them (ThemThem)
Out Of The Box!
Tags:
open house
selling
buying
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tigard oregon
beaverton oregon
washington county

Comments 65 New Comment

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Anonymous #47
Anonymous
Joanne

I absolutely would have done it! We actually had an agent from a different company call us last week because she had scheduled an open house and had an emergency come up. She could get no one in her firm to help out so she called to see if someone from our office would help. She was very appreciative when one of our newer agents agreed to help. It was great experience for the agent and the seller was happy!

February 02, 2009 08:45 PM
Rainer
1,680
Dean Vanderbilt
Dean Vanderbilt

I would let her do it in a heartbeat.  Probably it would be good to notify the seller (I can't imagine them objecting.)

Have you used "open house tours"?  With that approach, you can accomplish lots of open houses in one afternoon and you wouldn't need to worry about using other agents.

February 02, 2009 08:46 PM
Rainmaker
476,374
Barb Szabo, CRS
E-pro Realtor, Cleveland Ohio Homes
RE/MAX Trinity Brecksville Ohio

It's definitely not common practice here and I think if I asked an agent from another company to hold my listing open they would look at me as if I had 2 heads. Not to mention that I think the seller would think it really odd.

February 02, 2009 08:53 PM
Rainmaker
287,177
Pippa Mac
The Woodlands TX Real Estate
Chevaux Group Realtor, The Woodlands and Spring

Todd .. interesting .. not quite sure how I would handle this one!

February 02, 2009 09:35 PM
Rainmaker
611,690
Thom Abbott
Midtown Atlanta Condos For Sale
MyMidtownMojo.com Thomas Ramon Realty

Todd...when a post has 49 comments, I usually just scan a few, and then post my comments. But I found this topic of GREAT interest, so I read EVERY comment. And I did that, because now, I'm kinda confused. Such that, I'll be calling our attorney tomorrow to ask this very question.

First off, I think it's great of you to offer to help an agent like that. When I first started in the business, the brokerage we were with allowed us to do this, but we had to sign an agreement (even in the same brokerage) but it covered more about referral fees and commissions. It helped me learn how to do Opens, as well as make a few contacts.

But, the more I thought about it, the more I did think about the potential problems. Even if you met with the agent, walked them through the house and talked features, you could not disclose items that were covered in your listing agreement with the Seller. And there IS the concern about what that agent may, or may not say, that could then be held against you, should something go wrong later. Charlene talked about misrepresentation. That could be covered in a signed agreement between you, the Seller and the agent....something to the effect that the Seller cannot be bound by any oral statements made by the Open House agent....but then again, maybe not?

I'm thinking you are trying to do good for your Sellers. I'm thinking you are trying to do good for another agent trying to build their business. But, then I'm thinking you could get backed in a corner later on for something you never said.

I'm going to look into the legal part of this, and will post a follow up comment as soon as I have an answer.

February 02, 2009 09:40 PM
Rainer
6,374
Charlene Blevins
GRI, SFR
Charlene Blevins Real Estate

<<100% of nothing is nothing.>> So true. And that extends to agents whose licenses get suspended or revoked for not taking care of their clients/doing their jobs. No one is suggesting that this is about getting the buyers, and hence, both sides of the sale.--I'm thrilled with my seller's agent split.  I WANT buyers agents to bring us an offer. i want ANY OFFER FROM ANY BUYER/buyer's agent. BUT

I hear too many responses on here who think it's all about selling and not about representing. too typical and is what scares me for my profession. No one, certainly not me, is suggesting that we don't do everything to sell the listing; we do, but that is not the issue. The issue is doing your job fully, representing/protecting your clients by following the rules...if you don't know the rules, then  you're part of the problem. And if you think it's okay for somebody you don;t really know to represent your client, then you are part 0f the problem. I recall a recent CE class and what the state-approved instructor said was, You Owe Everything to your client. Everything. Selling their listing is fundamental, making sure that sale is legal and ethical is primary also. If you sell their property for their asking price, and then they are embroiled in a legal battle over the septic  tank for... however long, what good have you done them? have you done your job? What do you think constitutes you having done your job?

February 02, 2009 10:03 PM
Ambassador
1,550,626
Christine Donovan
Broker/Attorney 800-610-7253 DRE01267479 - Costa M
Donovan Blatt Realty

I would accept the offer.  It's a win for everybody involved, and I don't see any down side.

February 02, 2009 11:27 PM
Rainmaker
128,109
Mike Henderson
HUD Home Hub - 303-949-5848
Your complete source for buying HUD homes

Maybe I'm stupid, but I can't even imagine an agent saying no to this.

February 03, 2009 01:47 AM
Rainer
47,271
Earleene Woods
ASP, CRS, GRI
Keller Williams Experience Realty

I would probably let the agent hold the open house.  I understand what Charlene was saying, but could that same agent not show the house to just one person and make the same mistake?  At least if they are holding it open, you have the opportunity to have a more specific conversation about the property.  I also think there should be some kind of disclosure on the handouts if and certainly any agency disclosures handed out at the open house would let people know they are not representing the seller.  I think this is a win-win for both if properly done.

February 03, 2009 06:17 AM
Rainmaker
62,148
Catherine C Capasso
Cottage or Castle, What's Your Dream?
Catherine Cornelia Real Estate

There are great comments on this post and I have to chime in. I don't see the problem here. I guess it comes down to agency and disclosure. First of all, this agent took the initiative to contact you about a VACANT house that was in their neighborhood. I believe neighborhood knowledge plays a very important role in selling a house. Congratulations for giving this new agent the opportunity and the exposure.

I am licensed in New York and from a purely technical standpoint, agents have an Agency Disclosure Statement signed at the first substantive meeting with the client/customer. This includes Public Open Houses. The Public Open House is the most often overlooked place for signing disclosure forms. If this practice is applied, everyone coming to the Open House will know the relationship between the agent and the homeowner. As long as the new agent is legally licensed, I think it is great that they want to take a pro-active approach to getting business.

Catherine

February 03, 2009 07:01 AM
Rainmaker
62,148
Catherine C Capasso
Cottage or Castle, What's Your Dream?
Catherine Cornelia Real Estate

There are great comments on this post and I have to chime in. I don't see the problem here. I guess it comes down to agency and disclosure. First of all, this agent took the initiative to contact you about a VACANT house that was in their neighborhood. I believe neighborhood knowledge plays a very important role in selling a house. Congratulations for giving this new agent the opportunity and the exposure.

I am licensed in New York and from a purely technical standpoint, agents have an Agency Disclosure Statement signed at the first substantive meeting with the client/customer. This includes Public Open Houses. The Public Open House is the most often overlooked place for signing disclosure forms. If this practice is applied, everyone coming to the Open House will know the relationship between the agent and the homeowner. As long as the new agent is legally licensed, I think it is great that they want to take a pro-active approach to getting business.

Catherine

February 03, 2009 07:01 AM
Rainmaker
807,814
Lyn Sims
Schaumburg Homes
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg IL Real Estate - Northwest Suburbs of Chicago

I would have let her do the open. She knows the neighborhood and could sell the neighborhood that she knows and obviously loves.  Great way to get started!  Like you say, who cares who sells it, who holds it open, etc. and long as the job gets done.

February 03, 2009 07:34 AM
Rainmaker
188,733
Antonio & Alexia Cardenas
"The Realtors In Motion"
Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.

Todd, good topic, in the one hand, I appreciate the help, and if the new agent gets the buyer, I get the listing sold... on the other hand, there are some liabilities via the sellers insurance. (what if the agent gets hurt, injured, murdered... ) What type of liability does my the broker incurres if the agent makes disclosures that are not exactly right... E&O insurance will have something to say too... And on the other hand... ooops, I forgot I only have two hands! Adios!

 

Antonio

February 03, 2009 01:20 PM
Rainmaker
188,733
Antonio & Alexia Cardenas
"The Realtors In Motion"
Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.

Todd, good topic, in the one hand, I appreciate the help, and if the new agent gets the buyer, I get the listing sold... on the other hand, there are some liabilities via the sellers insurance. (what if the agent gets hurt, injured, murdered... ) What type of liability does my the broker incurres if the agent makes disclosures that are not exactly right... E&O insurance will have something to say too... And on the other hand... ooops, I forgot I only have two hands! Adios!

 

Antonio

February 03, 2009 01:20 PM
Rainer
72,873
Marian Gregor-Ann
Arbor area Real Estate
Keller Williams

Hi Todd, In our area it is common for the more experienced (busy) agents to allow newer agents the opportunity to hold a house open. More exposure for the Seller, good for the novice and buyers agency disclosures all around! Some of us mentor the newer agents & first invite them to 'sit' an open house with us to learn the ropes.

February 03, 2009 06:13 PM
Rainer
1,749
Cathy Arzola
Arzola's Asset Management

I agree totally that the seller is wanting to sell a home and that is what he has hired you to do and if a new agent needs and has the motivation to sell a propety that is a benefit to the seller, you as the agent, and the new agent.  I have done the same thing due to the many times that my husband has been transferred.  It has helped me out in many hard times.  As agents we are contracted to do a job and when the job is complete and satisfactory then we have a satisfied customer who may send us future business.  Referrals will keep you alive in this business.

 

 

February 04, 2009 08:54 AM
Rainer
204,176
Julianna Hind
REALTOR, 206-679-4768, Tacoma Federal Way, Auburn, Kent, WA
eXp Realty

Bottom line -- it is all about doing the best job for our clients, you served your clients well by allowing another corporate agent to run an Open House... it's a no brainer... AND what comes around goes around --- its TRUE!

February 05, 2009 05:34 PM
Ambassador
2,032,155
Todd Clark
Broker - Beaverton, Oregon Real Estate Expert - (503) 524-9494
Keller Williams Realty

Richard - That is what I thought, but seeing some of the comments here, I was going to write another complete post, but decided not to.

Fran or Rowena - She has done a few open houses, it was just her company didn't have any available and she really loves the neighborhood and who better to advertise a neighborhood than someone who lives there.

Ryan - I personally don't see a different between a new agent in our office or from another office. The seller had no problem with it, he thought it was great to have a neighbor want to attract people. I see the legal problems happening if working for us or working for another company.

Robert - I look at it as more exposure! The more people looking it at the better, my buyers or not, the buyers that see it may just buy that property, I've had it happen before.

Jason - I love new agents and we were all new agents at one time. I'm guessing some feel that maybe they should have never been given their first listing because they may have made a mistake.

February 07, 2009 11:30 AM
Rainer
30,772
Doug Aaserude
Broker
Inactive until May. 2009

I wonder if there is a liability issur on letting someone from a different brokerage company holding an open house. What if something horrible happens, like the house burned down. It happened in Oregon last year when an agent left candles unattended in a wine cellar during an open house.

February 11, 2009 02:41 AM
Anonymous #67
Anonymous
Pam Lorange

This is so interesting to me because i just got a similar request but it was from an experienced agent in another office that happened to live in the neighborhood of our vacant listing. After much deliberating I decided to let her do it.  I think in interesting times we need to find interesting ways of doing business that may be "out of the box".  I asked her what she would say to a potential buyer when they asked why she was holding open a house she didn't have listed and her response was "we are in interesting times right now and we are all trying to help each other out". Any kind of action involves some amount of risk - I think each situation needs to be dealt with individually but we need to be careful to not "risk manage" ourselves into inaaction.

February 13, 2009 03:46 PM
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