Are you being served?- Rob Balanda

I recently heard from an investor who found themselves selling a property through an Agent who had “over promised” and “under delivered”. 
Three weeks into a sole agency, despite all of the lofty and windy pronouncements by the Agent, before she got the job, about her superior level of service, my investor client had not heard from her at all and was now three weeks into a sole agency.

Understandably the investor wanted to terminate the sole agency and the question for me at that time was whether she had the ability to do so.

The complaint is typical and is a good reminder to readers that whenever engaging a new Agent on the sale of your property, that you have not worked with before, you need to have in your Investors Toolbox a clause to be included in the Sole Agency which confirms in writing the big promises made to you eg. that they will ring you after every inspection of the property and will meet you personally every week and provide you with a written report detailing all activities in relation to the marketing of the property over each week.

[sam id=32 codes=’true’]Such a clause keeps the Agent honest and if they don’t perform to the promised expectations then the clause would allow you to terminate them on the spot.

Another call with a client though recently reminded me that such a clause must always be used with discernment if you already have a relationship with the Agent.

If you have had a good experience in dealing with them before, I don’t recommend the use of the Clause.

The client here had requested the inclusion of a Clause with an Agent that she had used successfully on the purchase of a property but was now engaging for the first time on a sale.

The client was a little naive in not understanding that the Agent, when confronted with the request was so personally offended that she went cold on the whole idea of being engaged to sell the property.

My client had now “burnt” the major Agent in the area.  So remember, the clause is only really needed when you are engaging an Agent for the first time, not where you don’t already have a relationship with them and experienced their level of professionalism and service.



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Rob Balanda


Rob is a partner in the Gold Coast based law firm MBA Lawyers. He is a highly regarded educator of property investors and estate agents and the author of the "Made Simple" series of books and CD's.

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