Dr. Karen  Lewis, Broker 954-2489149, No Compromise When it Comes to Our Clients! (K1 Realty Group)

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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

1. Your broker should totally go to bat for you and fight this. 

2. If they stick to the 'you pay to fight it,' then you let them know if you win (and you should), that they (your broker) will not be taking any part of the commission for which YOU fought.

We had this happen last year with one of our agents. Our attorney typed up a letter to the other brokerage and our agent's commission was totally paid! I believe the cost for that letter was $150.

After you receive your commission that YOU had to fight for, find a supportive broker!

Apr 19, 2017 04:03 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

I guess that is your broker's decision. I would not be affilited for long with a brokerage where the broker leaves me "hanging" that way.

Apr 19, 2017 03:53 AM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Retired - Franklin, MA
Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team

pay the attorney.... you'll need to pay the broker.... and find another place to land....quickly.... start interviewing now....

Apr 19, 2017 06:26 AM
Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

Coldwell Banker said the same thing to me once years back when a client didn't want to pay the .5% they owed me from a Buyer/Broker Agreement. I would have spent more on the attorney.  Those docs are there for psychological leverage, it seems they literally are not worth anything beyond preventive measures that are not fail-safe.

Apr 19, 2017 05:03 AM
Fred Griffin Florida Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

1.  Sue that Buyer for your commission.

2.  File complaint with Real Estate Commission and sue the other Agent for tortuous interference (check your state law, etc.).

3.  Get another Broker.

Apr 19, 2017 01:27 PM
Peter Mohylsky. Broker -BRIX REALTY
Miramar Beach, Florida - Santa Rosa Beach, FL

The signed agreement is just a formality we push trying keep buyer loyalty.  Pick fights you can win. 

Apr 19, 2017 03:32 AM
Diana White-Pettis
Bennett Realty Solutions - Upper Marlboro, MD
GRI, CDPE, CNE, WHC Upper Marlboro Homes for Sale

I would move on to the next client and depending on the reasons given by the broker for not fighting it, I would look for another place to call home.

Apr 19, 2017 09:21 AM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Move on to another prospect.

Apr 19, 2017 06:44 AM
Annette Lawrence , Palm Harbor, FL 727-420-4041
ReMax Realtec Group - Palm Harbor, FL
Making FLORIDA Real Estate EZ

Karen, I suggest focusing your business towards 'loyalty programs' that create great incentive to stay loyal.

Then I would re-evaluate what you are paying your broker for. It is possible your brokers 'pay for it' comment came in a waterfall of words to justifiy that position. My take on what you shared is your broker has a loyalty problem regarding agents. They ALL do, but some disguise it better.

If your broker does not have the agents best interests in mind, then your choice is find one that does OR pay for what you are actually getting.

This is another real estate example of "FULL SERVICE" means, whatever I choose to do. Your brokers action, from what you shared, falls well short of FULL SERVICE. So what are you paying for?

Apr 19, 2017 04:41 AM
Susan Laxson CRS
Premier Sotheby's International Realty - Naples, FL
The Michelle Thomas Team

Time to find a broker who will back you. If not, what are the contracts such as the buyers broker agreement for?

Apr 19, 2017 04:40 AM
James Dray
Fathom Realty - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

At the very least your broker should have made a phone call in your behalf to the broker of the agent who wrote the contract. 

Apr 19, 2017 03:53 AM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

Find a new broker who has your back - that is a really weak response - imagine what the response will be the next time you need help.  I agree with Fred Griffin - don't forget to go after the other agent for your commission - it may or may not have been that agent's fault that the client wandered.  I also agree with Debe Maxwell, CRS that a strong letter can do the trick and not cost very much -

Apr 20, 2017 07:25 AM
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

Let me be honest.... I'd leave that broker in a heartbeat. (=Run!)

Is it some kind of online broker with no decent insurance? 



Apr 19, 2017 07:19 PM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

I being a broker, would back you up and fight it.


Apr 19, 2017 05:48 PM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Both Debe Maxwell, CRS  and Nina Hollander said it well....A

Apr 19, 2017 02:34 PM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

These things are hard to fight and the worst part is the rejection. If it is a matter of principle to you and you are totally in the right, pursue it. The downside is the time and attention it will take away from you other business and is it worth it? If the other agent knew beforehand and stepped on your agency, you may can file a complaint with your Board.

Apr 19, 2017 01:54 PM
Eve Alexander
Buyers Broker of Florida - Orlando, FL
Exclusively Representing ONLY Orlando Home Buyers

First of all...

You are the agent and cannot fight anything...only the broker can.  The buyers broker agreement is with you broker, just like a seller listing is.

Many years ago, I did sue a buyer on behalf of my agent.  Buyer paid the attorney fees and made payments to us for 2 years.  It was worth it.

Another time one of my agents wanted me to sue a buyer that bought without him.  I refused because I learned he had the buyer sign the agency agreement on top of the car while showing homes.

There is something call "informed consent"...it is the buyer agents job to make sure that the buyer understands what they are signing and what the reprecussions can be.  My buyers agent did not do that.


Ps:  I would need to know more about your case before I would recommend anything.

Apr 19, 2017 01:46 PM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, EXP - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

If you win, does your broker still expect their cut of the winnings?

Time to shop for a new broker.


Apr 19, 2017 11:47 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Will your broker file a complaint at the Board. You may end up with a Professional Standards hearing and a compensation award!

As for the attorney, check you independent contractor's agreement!

Apr 19, 2017 05:51 AM
Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker

Are you and the other agent REALTORS®?  Our COE prohibits suing another agent for a commission.  If you think you can prove that you are the procuring cause check with your local board about filing a grievance.

Apr 19, 2017 05:36 AM
Gloria Valvasori, Accredited Senior Agent
REAL Experience | REAL Commitment | REAL Results!

The brokerage should help you fight this.  We have had a few situations like this where the broker was very involved.  Not only did the Judge rule in our favour (my brokerage, not me personally)  and I beleive we also had court costs paid the Buyer who broker the agreement.

Apr 19, 2017 05:32 AM
Mick Michaud
Distinctly Texas Lifestyle Properties, LLC Office:682/498-3107 - Granbury, TX
Your Texas Lifestyle is Here!

Fred has a great answer.  And yes, get another broker.

Apr 24, 2017 09:28 AM
Susan Haughton
Long and Foster REALTORS (703) 470-4545 - Alexandria, VA
Susan & Mindy Team...Honesty. Integrity. Results.

Wow, no way.  Our brokerage has a legal department to deal with these issues and would not pass that expense along to the agent.  I would find another broker.  In the meantime, you always have the option to consult an attorney and see if their charges would be worthwhile, depending on the anticipated commission.  Sorry this happened to you. 

Apr 24, 2017 06:08 AM
Debra Leisek
Bay Realty,Inc Homer Alaska - Homer, AK

For me, I would call this education and learn from it. I would work on my skills as a salesperson and I would find another brokerage to work with. You might want to consider a more supportive broker who actually helps train and assist you. They also will support you in times like this. Real Estate is layers of training and relationships from all angles, the foundation you receive from a good broker can help solidify your career over the years in many ways.  Learn from this but don't dwell on it.... move on the market is hot go sell something!

Apr 24, 2017 12:13 AM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

We have had these situations in CO too, and it takes more than just a signed buyer agency.   I too think you need a more supportive broker.

Apr 21, 2017 07:40 AM
Kasey & John Boles
Jon Gosche Real Estate, LLC - BoiseMeridianRealEstate.com - Boise, ID
Boise & Meridian, ID Ada/Canyon/Gem/Boise Counties

The BBA is between the broker and client.  The broker has to be on board with any pursuit.  If they will back you on the pursuit but won't pay attorney fees you will just have to decide if it's worth your time and money.

The pursuit of commission based on the Buyer Broker Agreement has absolutely nothing to do with the other agent UNLESS there is a procuring cause case.  

The other agent COULD be in violation of the Code of Ethics or interfering with a contract IF they knew.  Buyers lie.  Perhaps the agent didn't know there was a signed agreement with the buyer and another agent.  They are required to ask, but I think you'd have to prove that this agent did it knowingly and blatantly.  If you are both REALTORS you can file a grievance, but I've been on grievance committee and again, you'd have to have proof for it to move forward.  Or if there is a procuring cause case you can file for arbitration, again proof of procuring cause would be required. 

As far as your Broker goes - it's their prerogative to care or not about this, but it's a good reason to sign on with a broker that you know and trust and who has your back.  I'd consider finding another Broker.


Apr 20, 2017 08:07 AM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Debe Maxwell, CRS nailed it, Karen Jones Lewis, MBA, Realtor.

You sure want a support from your brokerage.

Apr 19, 2017 09:58 PM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

Yes, you would be paying the bill, but the Broker should be next to you in court...he or she has money riding on this also.

Taking this to court to get your commission is a must in order to show others that a contract is a contract|!

Apr 19, 2017 04:14 PM
shirley cicero
Continental West Realty - Livermore, CO
Northern Colorado Mountain Homes and Vacant Land

Wow...I would hope at the very least my broker would at least make a call to the other brokerage company. I would want to work for a company that gives me support.

Apr 19, 2017 12:29 PM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA
https://HugginsHomes.com - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

Looks like you have a lot of good answers here.  I don't use the BBA, so I can't help there.

Apr 19, 2017 10:35 AM
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West & Lend Smart Mortgage, Llc. - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

As Debe Maxwell, CRS wrote. Fight like there is no tomorrow

Apr 19, 2017 08:02 AM
Toronto, ON

What does your contract with your brokerage say?

Apr 19, 2017 07:43 AM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author


Contact other Broker

File ethics complaint

Negotiate finders fee type deal

File small claims action represent yourself

Live & learn...move on

Apr 19, 2017 07:08 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

I would let it go.  Not worth the hassle.

Apr 19, 2017 07:03 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Sounds like it's time to find another broker and move on

Apr 19, 2017 06:56 AM
Nathan Gesner
American West Realty and Management - Cody, WY
Broker / Property Manager

You have a contract. The other agent's Broker should honor that contract. If they refuse, hire an attorney and go after your commission as well as the attorney fees. If your case is clearly documented, you may be able to negotiate compensation without going to court. I would start by asking for the entire amount but be willing to settle for a referral fee just to put an end to it.

Apr 19, 2017 06:17 AM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Karen Jones Lewis, MBA, Realtor I've heard of this happening before where the company won't stand behind their BBA contracts. Put in a grievance with your local Association. The client probably didn't know any better and the agent went behind your BBA.

Apr 19, 2017 06:11 AM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

Read COE , SOP 16-9  & 16-14 . It is crystal clear the other Agent had a COE responsibility to the consumer also .

Apr 19, 2017 05:52 AM
Jennifer Mackay
Counts Real Estate Group, Inc. - Panama City, FL
Your Bay County Florida Realtor 850.774.6582

This is a basic reason why I don't bother with these agreements - not worth the paper they're written on and unless you have deep pockets, not worth trying to collect on - move on is my suggestion

Apr 19, 2017 05:46 AM
Lyn Sims
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg Real Estate

I have had it happen where my broker did not feel the battle was worth it. What do you think & do that. We would have to arbitrate it in our board first.

Apr 19, 2017 05:19 AM
Brenda Mayette
Miranda Real Estate Group, Inc. - Glenville, NY
Getting results w/ knowledge & know-how!

This might just be a blessing... use the energy you'd use in fighting the fight with the buyer to find a broker worthy of your affiliation.

Apr 19, 2017 04:49 AM
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

I think the broker is wrong. This is something that can be settled in dispute resolution set up through your local ro state association.

Apr 19, 2017 04:32 AM
Julie Larson Realtor® Sarasota FL 941-882-0322
PalmerHouse Properties Florida - 941-882-0322 | Serving Sarasota, Manatee & Charlotte Counties - Sarasota, FL
When you're thinking of moving...ThinkSuncoast.com

I feel your pain. I had this done to me as well and I was very upset about it. However, the cold, hard reality is that it's not worth it to the broker to battle it out. 

Apr 19, 2017 04:01 AM
Jeff Pearl
RE/MAX Distinctive / LIC in VA - Lovettsville, VA
Full Service Full Time Realtor

Those scenarios happen often, and it's why many agents don't bother with buyer broker agreements. Although it's better to have one than not have one. I don't know the facts, but it might be worth consulting with an attorney.

Apr 19, 2017 03:53 AM
Wayne Zuhl
Remax First Realty II - Cranford, NJ
The Last Name You'll Ever Need in Real Estate

If you showed the buyer the home and negotiated a fully executed contract, you're entitled to a commission. Other than that, you're not due commission.

Apr 19, 2017 03:34 AM
Dr. Karen Lewis, Broker 954-2489149
K1 Realty Group - Miramar, FL
No Compromise When it Comes to Our Clients!

Thank you for your comment. Understand totally but what would be purpose for getting it signed.

Apr 19, 2017 01:11 AM
Pete Xavier
Investments to Luxury - Pacific Palisades, CA
Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide

Be wise to pick which battles to fight in real estate. Give it some time and thought if this battle would be worth it.

Apr 19, 2017 12:24 AM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel


Did you spend a lot of time with the buyers?

 I would just move on

Jun 26, 2017 03:24 AM
Harry F. D'Elia III
RentVest - Phoenix, AZ
Investor , Mentor, GRI, Radio, CIPS, REOs, ABR

depends what is the commission vs lawyer costs

Apr 19, 2017 08:31 PM
Olga Simoncelli
Veritas Prime, LLC dba Veritas Prime Real Estate - New Fairfield, CT
CONSULTANT, Real Estate Services & Risk Management

Unfortunately this happens all the time!

Apr 19, 2017 06:42 PM
Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

How do you prove the house you showed is represented by another agent?

Documentation, documentation, and trust.

I agree with your broker.

I rarely showed people homes for the same reason. Those really wanting a place go direct to listing agent w/o you.

Apr 19, 2017 07:04 AM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

Ken Jones nailed this one!

Apr 19, 2017 05:33 AM
Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of the Manchester NH's area Leading Agents

I think the broker is wrong not to have your back. I would send them a bill based on what they are buying and without a lawyer can file a suit against them. I have taken people to court, although rare, when they are in default and did it blatantly. 

Apr 19, 2017 05:20 AM
Raymond E. Camp
Ontario, NY
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester

If you were in constant contact via phone calls and in person it is worth the fight; if not back to the drawing board.

Apr 19, 2017 05:03 AM