Is my potential agent taking to long to write an offer?

38 Replies

What's appropriate here? 

First, I have not signed anything with any agent yet. Second, I flew to a different part of the country to look at properties in the chosen area because the cashflow is much better there than where I'm at in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Friday and Saturday I met with real estate agents on different days to look at rental properties in different areas. Both companies also do property management as well.

Call them Company A and Company B    

The properties I looked at with Company A are on the North Side of Town and they are properties I personally picked out in advance. I gave him the addresses, etc. and he made arrangements to to see the insides of the properties that we could go inside. Some of them we couldn't go inside because they are occupied and in essence I would end up having to make a curb offer. 

The properties I looked at with Agent "Slowski" at Company B are on the South Side of Town and they are properties I personally picked out in advance. I gave him the addresses, etc. and he made arrangements to see the insides of the properties that we could go inside. Some of them we couldn't go inside because they are occupied and in essence I would end up having to make a curb offer on these as well.

None of the properties I looked at with Company A are properties i liked after seeing them close up. 

Three of the properties I saw with company B I liked and I told agent "Slowski" this on Saturday. We discussed what amount the offer should be, strategy on how to handle a potential counter offer, etc. and then I told him on Saturday afternoon to go ahead and write up the offer for the amount we've agreed upon. Get it over to me, and I will sign it. He smiled and said OK.

Did not hear back from him the rest of the day Saturday........

Did not hear back from him on Sunday...........

Monday morning I call him and ask, when can I expect to get the offer from you so I can sign it......

He says, "I'll have it to you on Tuesday".  Needless to say I was surprised, but it was a Monday, beginning of the week, and I could tell he was in the middle of something by the tone of his voice, etc. etc. so I said OK.

I have emailed him twice today (Tuesday) about the offer and asked when can I expect to hear back and he still has not responded back.

It is now Tuesday ......5:00pm California time....Which means it is 8:00pm his time so I am assuming he will not be getting the offer over to me today. 

Before you say, find another agent at Agent "Slowski's" Company and work with him or her,....I already have.......but nothing seemed to change.  When I first contacted this company the receptionist put me through to "Agent Slowski" and we had a nice conversation ,...Afterwards I looked up his name on their website and found out that he is the Office Manager at this company....and he is a licensed Realtor. Over the last 3 weeks before flying out to their part of the country to look at properties he was either slow getting back to me, or he wouldn't get back to me at all. So I contacted a different person at their office.....someone who is on the SALES side and does not have collateral duties of Office Manager, etc. He in turn said to stick with "Slowski" but CC him in on all communications, which is what I've done.      

I have not signed anything with anyone at Company A or Company B , .....and I would guess that any Realtor will tell you that from an ethical standpoint I am supposed to "write the offer" with the agent that took me inside the property..........but when is enough, enough regarding waiting on this agent? 


If an agent knows you're a legit buyer this is Absurd. Fired! If they know you flew in to look at properties they should be all over you as a buyer. My agent writes offers, gets them to me for signature, and delivers them to seller's agent in 4 hours.

I would call the listing agent and say you want to put in and offer. 

Or simply knock on the door and tell the owner

Real estate agents like that REALL tic me off and I have no problem going around them to make an offer 

I applaud your efforts to stick with this agent, however, you dont need to if they are not doing what is needed.

Ask him if he can have the offer documents to you by 9am tomorrow, since you have been waiting for them for x days now.

If he cannot do this, go to another company altogether and ask an agent to write up an offer for you.  Maybe even the agent that showed you properties in the other end of town.  Ask how long it will take to draw up the offer, so you know up front... It really should be 1 day max. 

Totally frustrating, I know.

As an agent, (as an FYI) the only people who dont get my immediate attention are those who put in lowball offers that have a close to 0 % chance of getting accepted.  I'm all for somewhat low offers, but super lowball... nope. 

I personally would switch agents without a second thought. IF you lose any of the properties because another person beats you to an offer, you will be angry not only with the agent but also yourself for not taking more aggressive action.

I get it. I'm an east coast city girl living in the west coast suburbs. Most people with whom I interact can't keep up with my sense of urgency. It's not their fault and it isn't personal. You just need to move forward with someone who can, set clear expectations about their level of responsiveness and initiative, and hold them and yourself accountable.

As for agent B, you have no contractual obligation to him. If he confronts you about moving forward with another agent, be polite and be honest. Use tangible examples in which his level of responsiveness did not meet your expectations. And APOLOGIZE and accept ACCOUNTABILITY about failing to clearly communicate your expectations to him from the outset. No hard feelings. That is important. And don't talk smack about him to anyone. He's more established than you in the market. When things go well, give credit to others. When things go badly, accept responsibility.

@Brian Garlington I worked with agents at my old day job for a year and I never heard someone say an offer would take almost 4 days to write up. If he never stated on Saturday that he had obligations that would hold up your offer beign sent out, then he has no excuse. My agent will sometimes say "I have to take my daughter to dance class tonight" and then I understand that he won't send it until super late at night or early the next morning. At my previous job, I would hear investors call in for the agent around lunch time to put in an offer and the agent would have it back to them before EOB that same day. I wouldn't accept 4 days, that's valuable time he's wasting of yours. Move on to a new realtor who understands the urgency.

One thing you havnt mentioned is the location. Different parts of the country work at different speeds.

Your applied nickname for agent B is already enough info to walk from him. No contract in place with him, no m Rao, legal or ethical issues here. He is slow, lazy and if hat is how he runs his business, you certainly don't want him managing your properties either.

Find another, go direct to list agent, or pick another area.

@Russell Brazil  Ohio

@Michael Plante      It's out of State so a little hard to knock on the owner's door. They're in Ohio and I flew in from California. Interesting thought though.

@Dana Whicker

@Christine Kankowski

@Sandra B.

@Amy Herzing      Thanks for your input. We will see what happens. If I don't have a contract and an explanation emailed to me by the time I get to the office at 7:30am  tommorow then the chips will end up where they fall. The good news is that I have another agent and company "vetted" so if something oes sideways with the first property I know who to reach out to.  

Four days to write up the offer is ridiculous unless the guy was hit by a bus on his way home to write up the offer. I would have it ready for your signature within a couple of hours after I get home.

I sometimes have the opposite problem: the client doesn't have a sense of urgency. I'll see a property that I think would be a good fit, and then they'll analyze it to death. When they get back with me two weeks later to put in an offer, well, too late. It's under contract.

I get so wound up about it because my experience is that no matter how long a property has been sitting there with no offers, the minute I start sniffing around is when four offers will come in back-to-back.


@Fred Heller

Perhaps it's a slower pace in Ohio where this all happened? I'm trying to give them the benefit of the doubt.....until tommorow morning 

At this point, even if he did send over the offers today, would you really want to keep working with such an inefficient agent? I would have already found another agent (at a different company) to send the contracts. 

You could have already lost your chance to purchase one or more of these properties within the past few days.

@Brian Garlington Unfortunately, too many agents operate like this and are too busy working on things that don't matter to get the things that do matter done.

One of the keys for me as an agent, is agreeing on the expectation. When I am asked by a client to do anything (write an offer, meet, go on a showing) I always provide them a timeframe that I can get that done and we agree on whether or not that works. I can adjust right then and there if needed. I really appreciate when a client tells me their timeframe/expectation upfront, that way I know what they need and can be sure to meet their expectations. As the client, you absolutely have the right and should set the expectation and timeframe. You are the one in control of the relationship.

One word of advice, I would be careful going directly to the listing agent with an offer now. Where "Slowski" showed you the property, that may be enough to constitute agency and they would still be due the commission. It might be good to consult another agent (preferably one that gets referred to you) on whether or not you can still do this. 

A relationship with an agent is all about fit, whether that be communication style, personality, ability, etc. Make sure you are clear with the agent and if they can't meet the expectation, then prepare to move on. Good luck on your search, I hope you find an agent that works for you.

This post has been removed.

Originally posted by @Brian Garlington :

@Fred Heller

Perhaps it's a slower pace in Ohio where this all happened? I'm trying to give them the benefit of the doubt.....until tommorow morning 

 That is too generous of a benefit of the doubt and likely a mistake. No excuse for such a delay, especially when the buyer (you) showed effort and ability be flying in and viewing properties in person.

@Sara K.

@Harrison Smith

Thanks so much for your input. Late last night they emailed the contracts over to me. As an aside there is no way I would go to the listing agent directly and have them represent me as the buyer so no worries there. 

Based on the feedback I've been getting as well as my "gut feeling" I will have Company B represent me for the first transaction and see how things go. Company A will certainly get a phone call from me when it comes to one of the other properties I saw though. 

Originally posted by @Harrison Smith :

@Brian Garlington  

One word of advice, I would be careful going directly to the listing agent with an offer now. Where "Slowski" showed you the property, that may be enough to constitute agency and they would still be due the commission. It might be good to consult another agent (preferably one that gets referred to you) on whether or not you can still do this. 

While I would tend to agree with this in most cases, in this case, so long as you send a written letter to the agent/broker explaining the timelines that occurred and that you no longer wish to work with them due to their failure to perform and that you will be finding another agent to work with who is more receptive to your timelines, then I think you are fine going direct to the list agent. Let the slowski try and collect the fees, he would have a tough time getting them and as the buyer, you are not paying the fees, the seller is so the one at risk is the list agent and I would let him/her know that upfront explaining the situation and he/she can make the decision.

@Brian Garlington I have written many offers over the years and every single one was sent the same day. It has gotten even easier over the years, since everything is signed digitally now. With the real estate market being hot, you can't afford to wait days to make your offer.

Tell the agent that you need the offer sent by 5PM today and if they are too busy to work with you, no hard feelings, you will find another agent. 

There could be a variety of reasons why they are responding slowly, but the reason doesn't matter. You need them to perform or move on.

@Will Barnard      Thanks for your input regarding timeline and not assuming to much.  Also, there is no way I would go to the listing agent directly and have them represent me as the this case the best option would be to simply find a different buyers agent at another company as well as find a different property management company.  

@Brian Garlington I think you might be missreading your gut. So far you say that before looking at property's you felt that slowski was not working the way you like and tried to change agents to someone that is working under the office manager (If I worked for a somewhat incompetent office manager that did not want clients taken from him I would probably just tell you to cc me on emails so I could keep an eye on him with out offending him.) Next you tried to write an offer and slowski was so slow that you felt the need to ask about it on the internet which means that you really knew the answer already. Now you are contemplating timing yourself to this guy for 30 to 60 days until closing, just think about how much aggravation you will have during that time. I have dealt with realtors that where not on my wave length and it is not fun.

@Brian Garlington @Ben Higginbotham Agree with Ben. Also, get away from these agents. They are losers that don't value your business plain and simple. How the heck do you not have homes ready for a client flying across the country (unless you pulled a last minute on them)? Curb offer? Good luck with that. There are agents on here (BP) that you can contact I would think.

@Christine Kankowski ...if you don't like the persons offer tell them to find another agent. Don't waste peoples time with poor performance. I have lost 2 deals because an agent thought I was making too low an offer. The multi family deal I lost went for 25k lower than what I was offering. Your time is valuable and I get that but tell people to move on if you "don't give them your immediate attention".

@Brian Garlington , I'm an agent who doesn't write up a ton of offers, meaning I'm not intimately familiar with the software. However, I can still whip up an offer within an hour. This is unacceptable, and if you have not yet signed this offer, I'd strongly consider not signing at all.

I would not use this agent, but if you've already signed, then I would be on his back every single day. Write down the contract deadlines in your own calendar and make sure you follow them. This is absurd behavior on his part. 

@Brian Garlington It's one odd story, that's for sure.  Whenever I've dealt with agents they are always lightening quick with the offer paperwork.  It might take time to get information about the property, schedule a showing, get into the home/unit, etc. but once it's offer time that dang DocuSign/EchoSign/FormSimplicity is always in my inbox within a couple of hours.  And it's followed-up with a call or text for the agent saying "It should be in your inbox".  In short, it's the LAST place where the process slows down.  Maybe your agent is lazy, maybe the agent is busy, there could be a ton of reasons but I'd, frankly, call the listing agent.  Ask if they have heard from Slowski just to put it out there.  

@Brian Garlington there is nothing slower in Ohio than at any other state.

You've got not so lucky to contact an office manager - they must be licensed but they don't have time to work with clients.

However, in your case, to make an offer for this particulate house, you have to stick with that Slowski(?). He/she has procuring cause and any other agent won't be entitled to commission (unless you feel like paying to your agent to buy a house)

You have to send to Slowsky email, explaining in details the break in chain of communication, that you're not tolerating delay in your business for so many days - since Saturday and you let him/her know that you WILL get another selling agent to serve you. Keep thi for your record in case you have to meet in court.

Do not answer phone calls - only in writing. Warn the next agent about situation so he/she I ready. Proceed with your offer ASAP.

Depending on the property, however, if it's still available since Saturday- I'd analyze your numbers. Good properties go fast  - within hours. There are plenty investors with cash low balling all the time - think twice about that property

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