There is a new form Agents must fill out with each offer and counter offer. It basically details each offer and counter. Its part of the deal now. In some cases a brokerage must keep a copy of those offers digitally or in the brokerage. While this is supposed to deter phantom offers, it won’t in the very least bit.
What I discovered some agents are doing truly disgusts me and brings down the whole industry. I’m writing this to warn you to hire an agent that you truly trust. Ask the right questions, do your own checks and balances, and do not go for the cheapest agent. Here’s why
If you live in the GTA, chances are, that you might have a bidding war on your hands when you sell your house. Not all agents can provoke this but it is a norm in some markets.
So you put your house on the market. First your listing agent convinces you to under price your house to generate a lot of interest. Great. now you get showings; you have an open house; you get marketing done; and all the bells and whistles.
Your agent without the you knowing declares that offers will be presented lets say on a Wednesday. A Real offer comes in. A little over asking price, and with no conditions. (Typical in this market) Not exactly the price the client wanted but over asking. No other offer comes in but…Your agent calls a couple buddies at another brokerage, to put in a couple low offers, and terms that are not great such as finance clauses and home inspections.
Wednesday comes around and your agent convinces you to take the offer that is just over asking it is the best one. You of course take it because you saw the other offers and are convinced that this is the best you will get and that is what the market is. Most people will go for this. The agent sells the house in less than 30 days, you think they are the best agent in town, and all is well. Little did you know that you could have made more money, or that they were deceiving you.
Why agents will do this?
Because they don’t want to spend any time on your house, you paid the lowest possible commission to them.
Because they have too many clients to worry about your house. They deal in volume.
Because they are artificially creating a market in your area, they are setting the price. You are referring them to your neighbours in the area now.
Because even with the new form they have to fill out, if you pick one of their friends offers, they will just come out of the offer at the last possible moment. Not deliver a deposit or something.
Beware of these practices, its very common and with all this money flying around in this market you must use an agent you trust!