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Are You Kidding Me ?

Are You Kidding Me ?

I think in every business, business owners will experience those "are you kidding me ? " moments.  Heck, in relationships, perhaps even more !  In the last week, we experienced two that were worth mentioning.

1.  VA buyer and buyers agent wants $10,000 cash back under the table from the sellerAre you Kidding Me ?

The offer looked pretty good until I saw in special clauses, "Seller will give $10,000 to buyer in the form of cash or money order".   Hmmmm ... not sure the VA folks would like that.  I cannot believe the buyers agent even agreed to put that in the agreement.  Needless to say, the offer did not work out.   Those folks can try to commit fraud somewhere else.

2.  Short Sale Seller wants 25 percent referral fee so he can move to Florida

After a long listing presentation going over the short sale process, seller says "Great, let's do it."   The last thing we require is that you give us a couple of thousand dollars from the real estate commission so we can move to Florida.  We say "We will not do that."  Seller says "We spoke to other agents who agreed to do that but we want to go with you due to your experience and expertise with short sales." .  We say "Thanks, but no thanks." 

Maybe we should have said "Are you kidding me ? " ....

What types of "Are You Kidding Me" moments have you had ?

Please share in the comments below.


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Comment balloon 109 commentsThe Somers Team • July 25 2010 08:18AM


VA would be all over those buyers in a heartbeat over asking for a kick-back.  I'd be tempted to send a copy of that offer off to the VA Regional office for them to investigate.  I thought the days of "creative" deals were behind us but they still seem to pop up all around us.  St

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) about 10 years ago

I recently had a seller who wanted $5,000 at closing in order to sign on a short sale.  We finally convinced him to sign without out it. But my words to him were exactly tha, "are you kidding me!"

Posted by Brian McBride, McBride Kelly & Associates (McBride Kelly & Associates Realty) about 10 years ago

I have had buyers request a rebate from my commission just for using me, but that did not happen!

Posted by Joan Cox, Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time (House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373) about 10 years ago

Oh my, what a week!

Just when you think you've seen it all... you see a little more craziness...

My lawyer introduced me to the first story many years ago, and it is fraud, he called it an 'OKLAHOMA', I'm still not sure what it refers too because I'd rather not. Needless to say this deal would have never made it through to closing.

The second adventure you had was just down-right funny. Good for you for walking away! Let them deal with someone who is incompetent, and inexperienced, and take him/her with them to Florida. Bon Voyage!

You're going to get a ton of comments on this post.

Posted by Sergio DePinto (Royal LePage Maximum Realty.,Brokerage - Greater Toronto Area) about 10 years ago

It's those "are you kidding me?" remarks that give all of us a story to tell.............we've all had them.

Posted by Roger D. Mucci, Lets shake things up at your home today! (Shaken...with a Twist 216.633.2092) about 10 years ago

Cindy - I hear you !  Not a bad idea.  I am half-tempted to send a copy of the agreement to the buyers agent broker.  At least the buyer's agent needs to be better educated when he is writing up contracts. 

Kelly - LOL, I guess you cannot blame the folks for asking !  Many times folks just do not understand and need to be educated.


Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

I had a loan officer refer a Buyer to me.  The Buyer wanted half of my commission for new furniture for his new house. When I told the loan officer, he said "Yea he wants some of my commission too."  I told the Buyer to find another agent or give me half of his paychecks since I wanted new furniture as well.

Sonya R Nevins (Star Realty, LLC) Waterbury, CT

Posted by Sonya Nevins (Sonya R. Nevins, STAR REALTY, LLC (Waterbury, CT)) about 10 years ago

Chris - Listing Appt - seller wanted to buy a bigger house. Problem - negative equity, and no money to put toward their new home. Are you kidding me?! Yikes!

Posted by Judy Jennings, Tap into Judy's real estate expertise & resources. (Top Agent Plus) about 10 years ago

Joan - Seems like there is a lot of entitlement demands out there.  If a rebate is offered that is one thing, but for it to be demanded, that is another.

Sergio - I have not heard of that "Oklahoma" term either.  I wonder where that comes from ?  I still could not believe it when I saw that in the agreement !  Imagine if it was signed and then a copy was sent to the loan officer ???  When I asked the buyers agent did he consult the mortgage officer about the $10,000 cash back, there was silence.


Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

I think these opportunities are great because it teaches you how to say No.  I have learned it is more important to learn to say no than to say yes.  So even though I do not walk away with listings due to me saying no, I smile because I have gained something far more than money....respect and value of my own time.




Posted by Sean Dawes about 10 years ago

Roger - Yes, it can be very entertaining when it happens, or at least after the fact like now : )

Sonya - LOL, why not throw in a new addition as well ?  I do love to give and be generous but am not a big fan of extortion : )


Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

Michael - I am sure it does !  Probably gets very quiet !

Judy - Yes, that is common these days.  You would just think that would be more well known before the listing appointment !


Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

I guess getting off scot-free on a short sale with no commission paid by the seller isn't enough any more.  Wow.

Posted by Sam DeBord, Seattle Real Estate Broker ( -Coldwell Banker Danforth) about 10 years ago

Sean - We wrote a blog awhile back called "The power of saying No".  You are right, that is very liberating.  It is harder for newer agents to say no due to the fact that they are trying to scrape up any business.  But one finds out the hard way that sometimes saying yes can lead you to spending a lot of time on something that never closes.  Is a rough lesson.    I think in both of these cases saying yes would have been walking down the path of having a legal issue, the 2nd is defrauding the lender as basically the $10K that would be paid by seller to buyer is built into the loan !  The more I think about it, the more I am leaning towards contacting the broker of that office.


Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

Chris - just contact the board and get their license revoked.  One less person having a RE license who shouldnt have one in the first place.  I will go back and find that blog you wrote and take a look at it.



Posted by Sean Dawes about 10 years ago


I found two of them in regards to politely saying "No" .  (written April 2009) (written October 2008)

I guess our blog has been around awhile !  LOL  Either way, it is a good reminder regarding "The power of saying No"

In regards to that agent, the scary thing is that he probably does not realize the magnitude of that clause.  It may be more of an issue where increased training is needed versus knowingly crossing the boundry. 

~ Chris

Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

This was a great list!  Hearing the stories makes you kinda chuckle... 

Posted by Chris Alston, Silicon Valley, California (Chris Alston (Keller Williams Realty, Silicon Valley, California)) about 10 years ago

What about an upfront fee to list a short sale.  Would the answer be: "are you kidding me"

Posted by Haris Dedic, Glenview Real Estate - Chicago North Shore (RE/MAX Villager 847-878-2588) about 10 years ago

Chris - Yes, we all have some good stories.  Please share one of yours as well !

Haris - An upfront fee to charge the seller ?  Or to pay the seller to list the short sale ?


Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

Short seller works for the bank he is "stiffing".  Short seller is getting divorced, has no money.  Bank takes it personally.  Wants $15K from seller to close.  $13K is agreed upon.  Then they decide, no, they want $23K.  Seller decides to borrow the $10K to make them go away.  Now they decided they want $36K.  Seller tells them what to do with it and now there is a deficiency judgment for the full amount of the loan $130K.  Of course they will never see a dime.  Go figure.

Posted by Jane Peters, Los Angeles real estate concierge services (Home Jane Realty) about 10 years ago

To charge the seller upfront fee for such suggestions. So much work with short sales and at the and we do not complain if "they" can not make it work.

Posted by Haris Dedic, Glenview Real Estate - Chicago North Shore (RE/MAX Villager 847-878-2588) about 10 years ago

Jane - Short sales can be so wacky.  That is amazing that the bank (his employer) played such hard ball.  Is a shame.  We have a number of great short sale stories, the most tragic being with Bank of America of course !  And TD Bank a close second.

Haris - I hear you !  They are SO much work.  We have turned some folks away due to the risk of getting involved with a short sale, putting so much time into, your heart and soul, only to end up with a waste of time if it does not get approved or it gets sabotaged some way.


Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

Short sale going on locally. Divorce situation. One spouse "rented" the house to the other on a "long term lease". Needs 6 digits to buy out lease after short sale completes. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!?

Posted by Donna Galinsky, Make Lake Norman Your Home! (Allen Tate Company) about 10 years ago

I once had a buyer's agent request a bonus for selling my listing and she wanted the bonus in the form of a visa gift card. 

hmmmmmm......I guess she didn't want her broker or the irs to know about that income. 

Posted by Christine Hooks, Celebrating 25 Years in Real Estate! (Pino Agency) about 10 years ago

I did an open house recently and this guy came in with wife and kids.  The kids were grabbing all the chocolates and smearing it on the walls.  He told me he was renting and wanted to buy, this house was perfect for him, and he wanted to do it in time for the first time buyer's credit.  Only caveat was that he wanted the Realtor to pay off the last five months of his lease.

When he walked out the door I closed it behind him right after I said, "Good luck!"

Posted by Kate McQueen, Tailored service for your real estate needs! (CB&A Realtors) about 10 years ago

I'm shocked that any licensed agent would be stupid enough to put the kickback in writing in a contract.  No, I'm really not.  :)

Posted by Jason Crouch, Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653) (Austin Texas Homes, LLC) about 10 years ago

Chris & Stephanie... since I was wrong on the last one, who wrote this one.. lol  Seriously though... the first one, yes, I can't believe a real estate agent would agree to that one.  In regards to the 2nd one.. I love those clients that want it all... they want the best, yet they want to pay for the best.  lol  But hey, can you blame them for trying.  But in reality, if I am that good, why would I give it away.. etc, etc..  Great post.  ps.. I have a few stories, but I could be here forever...

jeff belonger


Posted by Jeff Belonger, The FHA Expert - FHA Loans - FHA mortgages - USDA loans - VA Loans ( Social Media - Infinity Home Mortgage Company, Inc) about 10 years ago

I think that there are definitely moments that leave us scratching our heads in disbelief.  I had a buyer tell me that he wanted to "return the favor" to a seller here.  He lost about $35,000 on his house in another state and was determined to get a $300.000 house for $265,000 here.  I told him that as his buyer's agent I would only offer less if I could find the comps to support a low offer.  Otherwise, offering low just to "steal a home" was not worth risking my professional reputation with my colleagues.  Thankfully, he chose to work with another agent who called to "thank" me, insert sarcasm here!

Posted by Karen Feltman, Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group) about 10 years ago

Kate (#26) reminded me of the client that asked me to pay off their lease so they could buy a home.  I asked them, "just how much money do you think I make?"  That shut them up!  Absolute chutzpah to ask another human being to pay your debt!

Posted by Kathy Kenney, Realtor - Princeton & Central NJ Homes for Sale (Keller Williams, Princeton, NJ) about 10 years ago

Wow Kathy, that's a new one! I've had buyers ask if they could receive money back at closing, but I've never had anyone ask me to pay for something for them.......ok, let me rethinkg that one :-)

Posted by Tamara Inzunza, Close-In Alexandria and Arlington Living (RE/MAX Executives) about 10 years ago

Christopher and Stephanie - It's been a while since I've experience or heard about an "are you kidding me moment."  The most recent one was a tenant who's lease was ending in a month said someone told them the last month's rent was free and the seller and/or agents involved needed to provide proof that he agreed to pay rent all 12 months.  Oh and the lease wasn't proof.....


Posted by Michelle Gibson, REALTOR (Hansen Real Estate Group Inc. ) about 10 years ago

Oh my.... Sounds like bad juju to me...  I see Illegal all over this. ( In TN )  Never should be in the contract

Posted by Roland Woodworth, eXp Realty (eXp Realty) about 10 years ago

Have you ever seen that animated character who shakes his head back and forth so quickly all you see is a mess of blurry gel flying around.  I wish I had the nerve to do that when these types of questions come up. 

Posted by Chris Olsen, Broker Owner Cleveland Ohio Real Estate (Olsen Ziegler Realty) about 10 years ago

Having a young first time home buying couple ask for me to roll all of my commission into their price so they can qualify.  I had only shown them over 20 homes and spent weeks showing them around and walking them through the process.  Unbelievable.

Posted by Paula McDonald, Ph.D., Granbury, TX 936-203-0279 (Beam & Branch Realty) about 10 years ago

I had a short seller who, during the buyer's final walk-thru, asked my buyer's to give him cash for the window coverings and the ceiling fans... otherwise, he was taking them. (Are you kidding me?!!!)  I gently reminded the short seller that he signed a contract agreeing to include those in the sale... and that he should consult an attorney to discuss the possible ramifications. He chose to leave the coverings and fans... without additional compensation.  

Posted by Bill Burchard, Broker, Realtor, Representing Buyers and Sellers (3B Realty: 951-347-3818, CA) about 10 years ago

can you say "loan fraud?"  I would ask for the other agent's name that say they would kick-back a part of the commission.

Posted by Catherine Ulrey, Equestrian and Acreage Property Specialist (Keller Williams Capital City) about 10 years ago

Good question... of coarse there was silence to the question you asked. The red flags were in writing. It amazes me that any Realtor would not see this as being a no-go as far as the loan approval process was concerned.

I would have liked to see the look on your client's face when presented with this offer.


Posted by Sergio DePinto (Royal LePage Maximum Realty.,Brokerage - Greater Toronto Area) about 10 years ago

Stephanie and Christopher,

My "are you kidding me" involved the attorney representing my sellers in a short sale.  He emailed me his method of doing the HUD-1 so as to put a couple thousand dollars in the sellers' pockets - without the bank's knowledge. Yes, something in writing that would cost a law license!

I was immediately in my manager's office over this total fraud in which I wasn't going to participate.  Didn't like how my manager handled it but the attorney claims he had never yet done it, was motivated by sympathy and I helped him see the light.

That was the 1 short sale I had fall apart when the sellers learned I wouldn't permit this scam. Never will work with that attorney again by choice, although sometimes he represents the other side - and I dissect that HUD-1!

Posted by Irene Kennedy Realtor® in Northwestern NJ (Weichert) about 10 years ago

The most common "are you kidding me?" is buyer asking you for your commission and not just a little but 2%. No, thanks! 

Posted by Mike Yeo (3:16 team REALTY) about 10 years ago

Where did you get the cool clip art? Let's see...I was asked to do something with distressed or short sale listings by an investor that sounded very wrong to me and I declined and headed the other way big time.

Posted by Cheryl Ritchie, Southern Maryland 301-980-7566 (RE/MAX Leading Edge about 10 years ago

I recently put in an offer for someone.  After a couple of counters, the seller declined our offer.  He asks me to get a meeting with the building.  When I asked why, he said he wanted to offer him cash on top of the offer.  I should have said, "Are you kidding?"

Posted by Marsha Cash (RE/MAX Advantage) about 10 years ago

Just last week a day before a short sale closing, where the seller was paying the bank $25K to make his "problem" go away and the HUD is complete...the listing agent asks me if the buyer will contribute $12,500 to the seller to be "nice"...I was speechless, so she added "of course it would be kept OFF the closing statement...

1.  Since I am representing the buyer, why would I even suggest for them to pay money they do not need to pay?

2.  Why would I jeopardize myself by doing something illegal? 

Eve in Orlando

Posted by Anonymous about 10 years ago

A buyer who got a great deal on a home hostile over a cutting board that the seller refused to leave behind.  ( her son made it for her )

Posted by Denny and Denise Rockwell, Real Estate Professionals, Staging & Design (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties) about 10 years ago

A new potential client called me Friday of last week wanting us to negotiate the short sale on his house.  He explained that he wants to move and has $30k cash "available" for the new house purchase, but not a part of his disclosed finances.  He asked, "Can I buy the new house while you're working on the short sale?".

Can you guess what I said?....

"Are you kidding me?"


Posted by Aaron Ayotte about 10 years ago

Did the buyers agent really think VA would agree to this?  If so they need to get some more training - unbelievable!  And the short sale kick back is insane as well.  Glad you just said "NO"!

Posted by Terry McCarley, REALTOR, SRES, CDPE - Cape Coral, FL (REMAX Trend - Cape Coral FL) about 10 years ago

The most unbelievable "You've got to be kidding me!" happened a couple of weeks ago.  Background: I list REO's for a large asset mngmt company...I had a listing for $525,000 last fall. Had it under contract and in the option period when the asset mgr sent me a message saying..."Oops, this wasn't supposed to be foreclosed on...cancel the transaction." (prior mortgagor's were going through divorce - their attorney was working with bank...someone didn't cross their T's and dot their i's.) That was the first stage of this comedy of errors.

Over the next few months: The buyer's want this house so bad they contacted the prior mortgagors and attorney and made an offer to buy it went under contract, they had all their inspections, lender sent all docs to title...are at the closing table - and one of the Sellers (the divorcing couple) did NOT show up to closing...therefore - the property went back into foreclosure.

In April, I receive a voicemail from another agent wanting information on my prior listing...that he was working with the asset mngt on it...not after all the work and headaches I put into it he's I contacted the asset management company and asked to have the listing back...they said, I relisted the same property, the SAME buyers put an offer on it, it went to contract, we went through the inspection period, the lender sent docs to title, the Buyers signed all the closing documents then I got an email from the asset managment saying "Oops...there was a mistake made and we have to rescind this contract and REForeclose on the property." Are You Kidding Me? were my exact words to him...

This just ain't right! We have jumped through hoops and run through the fire...and the buyer's are still willing to wait, after all the money, time and effort they have put in...They really want this house.

We just pray that they put a rush on everything, have just one person be in charge of walking all the documents through, so no mistake is made this time...

Susanna Boyer, Round Rock & Austin, TX 512-785-4568 

Posted by Susanna Boyer (Sellstate Classic Realty) about 10 years ago

Christopher and Stephanie,  Thanks!  Those are both good for a hardy belly laugh! 

My recent are "you kidding me" came from a final HUD issued from a prominent local title company.  My sellers had been waiting for it so when it finally came to my blackberry I forwarded it on the them with the caveat that I had not yet had a chance to review it.  As I hit send I somehow knew it was a bad idea.  The commission was wrong, the transfers were wrong, the admin fees were wrong, closing help amount was wrong AND line 303 showed $22,000 cash back to the buyers (on a VA).  The errors were $13,000 additional charges to my sellers!  No way to Un-Ring that bell.  Settlement took 3 hours because my sellers read every line of every document and recalculated the HUD 4 times.  I only wish they WERE kidding me.

Posted by Pam Turley-Lucido (Exit Preferred REalty) about 10 years ago

This is so funny in a sad sort of way.  I can't even count what people have asked for in the past.   I usually answer them in a couple of tried and true ways.   #1  "Oh I am sorry but that is illegal and I wouldn't want you to get into trouble"  #2 I tell them.  Let me breakdown how our commission's work.   I go from original % down to 33.3% tax (LOL).   They are "shocked".  Then you have the I don't cares who still want a bite.  I tell them I am sorry I  have kids and a family, but have a great day!

Posted by Andrea Curtis United Country Premier Properties Certified Military Relocation Professional, U C INTERNATIONAL DIRECTOR OF MILITARY PROPERTIES (United CountryPremier Properties) about 10 years ago

I agree with Catherine. That sounds like a case of loan-fraud if I've heard of one!

Posted by Aaron Seekford, Ranked Top 1% Nationwide 703-836-6116 (Arlington Realty, Inc.) about 10 years ago

Had a deal (and a buyer) almost fall completely apart over a swingset once.  A swingset that you can get from Kmart for like $100 bucks.  The seller said he was going to leave it but when he found out that the buyer had no children OR grandchildren he decided to give it to a friend.  Problem was that the Buyer had also planned to give it to a friend.  First time in my business that a client screamed and cursed at me on the phone.  Are you kidding me???

Posted by Gary & April Greer, Real Estate Professionals (Century 21 Wright) about 10 years ago

i had a buyer tell me she'd write up an offer on the house i showed her in exchange for my commission, she wanted to buy appliances!

Posted by Melissa Brosey (Prudential Homesale Services Group) about 10 years ago

I have had buyers for the upper end homes say the homes talk to them, and they need some time alone in them. Can I come back and pick them up in a couple hours? ARE YOU KIDDING ME!

Posted by Rob D. Shepherd, Principal Broker GRI, SRES (Windermere/lane county) about 10 years ago

I had a seller who didn't like the fees during escrow - even though she knew what the estimatations were when we put her home  on the market.  She continually whined throught he whole transaction asking me to pay her fees.  Are you kidding me?  She netted over 150k - in this market!

Posted by Sue Martin, Broker Associate (Prudential California Realty) about 10 years ago

All of your stories are priceless.  We do work in a strange business.

Posted by Linda Lohman, Former Teacher/Broker (Fonville Morisey Realty) about 10 years ago

Really enjoyed reading this and all of the comments and other stories AR folks have had.  We all have those times we are saying, "Are you kidding me?"  

I decided to try and start a new group-Are you Kidding Me so we can share more of these stories.  It makes me feel better knowing I'm not alone with all this craziness sometimes and that it's not just me.  Plus, it makes for a  good laugh.


To join look up Are you kidding me.  I tried to copy and paste the URL, but it won't let me.

Hope to see many of you subscribe and share.  Hope this isn't unethical AR behavior, if it is, I apologize in advance and just let me know, it's not my intentions, I just liked the content of this blog and the comments it generated.

Posted by Kim Darling, CRS,GRI, "Your Home Team" Fresno/Clovis Homes (Keller Williams Westland Realty BRE# 01864461) about 10 years ago

My recent are you kidding me moment occured when I, personally, tried to buy a vacation home.  Went through all the pre-qual stuff and was told I was golden.  Found the right property and got it under contract....checked with my lender and was told I was still in great shape.  No issues (credit scores near 800, cash reserves, etc).....mind you this lender had processed other loans for me, so he knew my history.  He also knew I own rental properties....which became a big issue!  Two days later, I was standing in the property (2.5 hours from home) with the inspector and the phone lender!  Cancel the can't get a loan! 

Are you kidding me? 

Not only did I lose the house, but I was out $400 for inspections! 

Again....are you kidding me? 

I have a new lender now! 

Posted by Susan Lehmkuhl, Associate Broker (Buy and Sell Smart Realty, LLC) about 10 years ago

Wow! 10 grand under the table!!! That is just unbelievable!

Posted by Todd & Devona Garrigus, Broker / REALTORS® (Garrigus Real Estate) about 10 years ago

About a year ago I was showing a BUNCH of homes to a friend, I knew she was high maintenance but could see the payoff at the end of a transaction.  After getting two acceptances and backing our for one reason or another, she invited me to dinner, her treat.  Except when I got there she was just a little short of cash....then proceeded to pull out a new home contract so I could look it over to see if she was getting a good deal. My gut from the get-go had told me to refer this one out, but I didn't want to inflict anyone else with her!

Posted by Sue Follansbee (Golden Eagle Properties) about 10 years ago

Christopher and Stephanie - Wow is right... I concur. An agent that would put into writing that he/she wants a kickback... Amazing.... We have a few of these but my mind is blank right now. More coffee and I'll come back with something hopefully..

Posted by Robert Hammerstein, Bergen County NJ Real Estate (Christie's International Real Estate ) about 10 years ago

Federal Prisons are nice this time of year...right?

Sounds dangerous.

Great Blog...Keep up the good work!, Tom

Posted by Tom Waite, So Cal-Apartment Bldg Investments (Thomas Waite Real Estate Broker) about 10 years ago

Great blog.  I'm sure we've all had those moments!  Everyone else has already written my story!

Posted by Jan Green, HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN (Value Added Service, 602-620-2699) about 10 years ago

Both in the past week?  I wonder what this week holds for you!  Good luck!

Posted by Tamara Perlman (Referral Network Inc.) about 10 years ago

On the first, "r u kidding", I'd have called the manager of that agent.  On the second,"r u kidding".....RUN!

Posted by Kathy Opatka, Serving Ocean City, MD, & The Delaware Beaches (RE/MAX CROSSROADS) about 10 years ago

I actually haven't had one like this...but, I had a Seller that told me she wanted to list her doublewide on 10 acres of brush for a ridiculous amount and I blurted out "and I would like to win the lottery".  What people "want" and what they can "get" are two totally different things.

Posted by Eileen Liles, Macht-Liles Real Estate Group - Cedaredge, CO (970-216-0530 about 10 years ago

People do love to try us.  I remember in the market frenzie Lenders trying to get a kick-back. 

Posted by Dawnita Griffith, It does matter who you hire. (Meadow Lake Real Estate, LLC) about 10 years ago

"Are You Kidding Me's" are becoming a norm in this day and age. Why?


Posted by Ty Lacroix (Envelope Real Estate Brokerage Inc) about 10 years ago

Lately I have a lot of buyers asking me if I am going to rebate to them.  I answer - NO!

Posted by Gene Riemenschneider, Turning Houses into Homes (Home Point Real Estate) about 10 years ago

I like the "Are you kidding me?" but my favorite saying is "Wait, Whaaatttt????"  Ha!

I had one of those moments on Saturday.  Agent told me she was writing an offer on one of my listings at 1.  At 4 I hadn't gotten the offer or heard from her so I texted her to ask where it was, "Oh, sorry.  Showing properties.  Get it to you in an hour."  I text, "K. Put it in slot at office and text me when you drop it off so I can pick it up."  Response, "K".  At 8:30 pm!!!!!  "Offer in slot.  Sorry forgot to text u."

Wait, whaaatttt?  How do you forget to tell an agent you dropped off an offer?  Call, text, whatever.  Is she that busy that it leaves her to tell someone when she puts an offer in a slot at an empty office.  AN OFFER!!!

And, she knew I was having an open house the next day on the listing, yet she gave me until 6 pm to sign the contract which was way after the open house.  What if another buyer had come through.  If that buyer was my client, I would have required a response by a deadline before the open house started to protect my buyer's offer.

Two, "Wait, whaattt's!!"

Posted by Nicole Fleming (FC Tucker Emge) about 10 years ago

Hi Chris,  Amazing that they put the extortion demand in writing !  Did you send a copy to the VA ?  Keep us posted .

Posted by Bill Gillhespy, Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos (16 Sunview Blvd) about 10 years ago

Hi Chris,

Funny to see your post.  We submitted an offer on Friday on a short sale property. The night before my client had gone by the house.  While he was there looking around a neighbor who lives across the street saw him there and rushed over to tell him that the property was already sold to him and the seller had signed the paperwork the night before. The property was to have no showings till Friday so I explained to my client that the gentleman might have put in an offer but it was a short sale and the bank still has to approve the offer and purchase price.  Friday morning we viewed the home and as I mentioned submitted our offer.  The status changed to contingent that afternoon only a short time after ours was submitted so I was pretty sure, our offer wasn't the one going to the bank.  My client went back over to the neighborhood again on Friday night and was met by a different neighbor who told him the seller was accepting a lower offer from the neighbor across the street and the seller in turn was going to give him money under the table.  The listing agent said that the seller would not sign any other offers, even though she had higher ones as he wanted his old neighbor to get the property.  Are you kidding me?  She made a note to the fact when she submitted the offer to the bank and they denied it immediately.  Though I want my client to get this house, the seller is clearly one who has been milking the system and doesn't deserve a short sale approval for any amount!!!!!      

Posted by DeeDee Riley, Realtor - El Dorado Hills & the Surrounding Areas (Lyon Real Estate - El Dorado Hills CA) about 10 years ago

Went to a closing with my buyers on a a $750,000 home.  Buyers had other properties they liked just as much, but this one worked out the best timeframe wise.  The house had been listed for 2 years, and this was the first offer they had ever had on it, and the seller's took it.  Listing agent showed up with 1 seller, and a surprise POA for the other ("Are you kidding me!").  Closer from the title Company took one look at the POA, and his eyes got huge, and said "i have to make a phone call."  He came back 3 minutes later, and the POA was not in a format the title underwriter could insure, not a transaction specific POA, just a general!   Long story short, rate and contract expired that day, buyer's walked away, and that week put a house down the block under contract (that they auctually had liked better.)  That house is going on year 4 on the market!  The sellers switched agents of course, and that agent lost his big commission! 

Posted by John about 10 years ago

With the new HAFA program the buyer gets (I think) $3,000 for relocation expenses.  You may wish to check into that.

Posted by Dan Sieverding (Long Realty Company) about 10 years ago

These are great stories, sad that they are so prevalent in today's market. Is there no end to the madness?? Best Wishes to Everyone on your next "Are you kidding Me" moments!

Posted by Stacey McGhehey about 10 years ago

These are great stories, sad that they are so prevalent in today's market. Is there no end to the madness?? Best Wishes to Everyone on your next "Are you kidding Me" moments!

Posted by Stacey McGhehey about 10 years ago

Had one today on my first CFK (Cash for Keys).  I told the owner.... E V E R Y T H I N G must be gone, home cleaned out (broom swept).

He did.  The place was E M P T Y......except for the trash at the curb that was about 6 feet by 3 feet.  Trash day is tomorrow, so I didn't see any issue as all of the stuff there was clearly regular trash.

Nope - No Cash.  Had to reschedule to after the trash was gone.  My, "Are You Kidding Me", to the clean out guy was answered with, "I could be liable to the city for a code violation".  "Are You Kidding Me", for regular trash?!?!?

Didn't matter, I am not in charge!  We rescheduled.  When they say Cleaned out, They Mean
E V E R Y T H I N G!  Oh well it was my first!  That won't happen again! Be surprised, live, learn and move forward.  Joy

Posted by Joy Carter & Jeff Booker Brother and Sister Team, Trust Your Family's Move To Our Expertise! (Keller Williams Parkland/Coral Springs Realty-GreatFloridaHomes Team) about 10 years ago

Are you kidding me sounds like a good answer particularly since the banks don't allow some of this.

Posted by Christine Donovan, Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M (Donovan Blatt Realty) about 10 years ago

I'm working on a transaction (I'm the buyer's agent) with a listing agent that's just a nightmare.

I swear - every little detail turns into an argument.  I've found myself saying "ARE YOU F*&$ING KIDDING ME????????!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?" every day.

-- Danny

Posted by Danny Batsalkin, Los Angeles Real Estate | 310.432.5706 (Keller Williams Realty - Beverly Hills) about 10 years ago

I recently had someone ask me for a "referral fee" after I sold their home.  Really?  I did the job you asked me to do and now you want me to pay you for it?  That was my most recent "Are you kidding me?" moment!

Posted by Nicole Donaghy, Helping Families Home in Lexington and Columbia (Re/Max Purpose Driven) about 10 years ago

At the very least you should have your broker forward a copy of the contract on the VA "offer" to the buyers agent's broker so they have the opportunity to make sure it doesn't happen again in their office.

Posted by Joe Daniels, Broker, Appraiser, Realtor(R), (Personal Service Realty) about 10 years ago

Years ago... we had a buyer who needed a Farm Home Loan. The house she chose was "almost" good enough for their specifications, but the sellers had to do several things that cost some money they really couldn't afford.

When everything was finished and the inspection done the buyer said she couldn't buy the house. Why? "Because Farm Home won't give me enough extra money to build a garage." That was the first time she had even mentioned the word "garage."

I enjoyed all the stories... but feel a little sad that we've become such a "gimmie" society. Somehow, we need to squash the entitlement mentality!

Posted by Marte Cliff, Your real estate writer (Marte Cliff Copywriting) about 10 years ago

Great post, many good laughs here ! A sign of the times that's for sure.

Posted by Lillian Nolloth (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) about 10 years ago

Great post, many good laughs here ! A sign of the times that's for sure.

Posted by Lillian Nolloth (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) about 10 years ago

I like less agent is all the better

Posted by Dana Devine (Charles Rutenberg Realty) about 10 years ago

This is without a doubt, a great blog! It made my day! As someone else commented: It's nice to know we are not alone, in this fantastic career of ours! (misery loves company!)

Posted by Bev Cibulsky about 10 years ago

Hey Chris and Steph, My mother had a moment where she was literally walking out the front door to a Feng Shui consultation and the clients called up as she was about to shut the door to let her know..she was canceling the consult.  My mother was driving out east, about an hour drive so at least they called when they did because it would have been a wast of 2 hours

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) about 10 years ago

Well I just signed a listing to sell my Florida condo, nice and short ... except for all the silly forms to sign. Guess I've done it so often it's just let's get down to business.

Posted by Tina Gleisner, Home Tips for Women (Home Tips for Women) about 10 years ago


You sure brought us some great stories, don't think I can top these.  I enjoyed the post and all the comments.  Wishing you continued success.

Posted by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy (Napa Consultants) about 10 years ago

Although i have not had a are  you kidding me moment yet im sure that i will have many. so i can begin to tell my story.

Posted by Michael Schneider about 10 years ago

That is a crazy story! In 20 years I've had many of those moments, however, one that always sticks out in my mind is this:

Many years ago a Buyers agent presents an offer on a home for $225,000 which is $10,000 over full price and ask for a $50,000 'concession' to put in a swimming pool. I was the listing agent. I spoke with Seller and we went back and said no way you must be kidding, can't be done, underwriters won't let the Buyer get a 20% concession, regardless if it is supposedly for a pool. She sent me an email back that stated they would pay the $225,000 and not put the concession on the contract they would do a separate addendum that they wouldn't send to the lender and the Seller could give them the money back after the closing.

I was shocked. Couldn't believe anyone would be so stupid, when I spoke with her she told me that she had done this before and other agents do it also.  WHAT!!!  I filed a written complaint with the LREC. Spoke with the Seller and explained to him that what they were suggesting was illegal and I would not take part. My Seller, a Doctor, clearly stated he would not be apart in any illegal activity. That was the end of it!

Posted by Paige Walker, Real Estate Guru - Alexandria Pineville LA (Paige Walker) about 10 years ago

Wow...I've been doing this for a while and I've had my share of, "Are you kidding me?!" moments as well. 

Won't bore you with 'em. 

Just dropped by to thank you for today's belly laugh!

Posted by Lanette Branch, Bel Air, MD Real Estate Agent (RE/MAX Components) about 10 years ago

I've often wondered if it was a common occurrence for buyers to try and shake down their listing agents for part of the commission on a short sale. I'm glad you stood your ground and a little shocked that there were other agents willing to do this. What a crazy time we're living in.

Posted by Cari Anderson about 10 years ago

A recent client of mine wanted to purchase a home to live in, versus the condo they now had.  They also have another home in another state.  Their local lender wanted them to put their condo up for sale in order to meet loan conditions. They didn't believe all the affadavits my clients signed that said they'd be living in their new home.  Can you imagine a bank having the power to tell you that you have to sell a residence?  Hmmmm


Posted by Cara Marcelle Mancuso, Call a Marana neighbor, I'm THERE! LONG REALTY (Long Realty - Dove Mountain, Marana AZ) about 10 years ago

Cara- we feel the same way when we deal with a few select notorious banks with short sales.

Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

Staying focused is the key to making it through these tough times. Some hard work, honest with ourselve and focus, focus, focus and we will prevail. After every rain storm the sun shines bright.

Posted by H.C. Tidwell about 10 years ago

I had a pretty funny one where the buyer requested $5,000 back for closing cost credit on an all cash offer.  The total closing costs were $700.  I thought that was hysterical and pointed it out and they removed all closing cost requests.  Would of been mean to take it and not explain the end result.

I also love those second loan companies that try to get money from buyers, short sale negotiatiors that demand fees from teh buyer, and let's not bring up the attorneys!

I have yet to meet any of the above that can negotiate any where near the level I do.  Banks actually respect a professional real estate broker more in my experience.

Posted by Stefan West, Temecula-Murrieta-Menifee CA Real Estate (West Realty) about 10 years ago

A short sale listing of mine - the sellers 2nd lien holder required the seller to pay 12,000 then they would approve the sale.  The seller asked me if I was going to pay it.  uhhh  no!  LOL

Posted by Debbie Atwood, Real Estate Broker (Century 21 Real Estate Center Everett, WA) about 10 years ago

Stephanie and Christopher!  I love the title of your posts.  There are many times that I've said..."are you kidding me?"  One that pops to my head is a buyer asking that I show a property at 11:00 pm...that may not sound too extreme but come on....are you kidding me?

Posted by Olga Diaz, Potter, Mng Broker, CRS, ASP, ePRO, ABR (COLDWELL BANKER TOMLINSON) about 10 years ago

Olga- That is too late! So was the request last week to show a property at 7am on a Saturday. I am an early riser but that does not mean I am coherent, nice, or out of my pajamas at that time of the day.

Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) about 10 years ago

A lot of the time I think they ARE kidding. In your second situation maybe the sellers were just kidding that there were other agents who would kick back commission money to them to pressure you to do it. Not that any sellers would ever lie to us! ;-)

Posted by Suzanne Strickler, School is never out for the Successful. (Realty Mark Associates) about 10 years ago

My partner got asked to have carpets cleaned and to give 750 dollars to a buyer who was just about to close because money was tight!  Yeah for is tight!  Are you kidding me?

Posted by Wendy Rich-Soto, Realtor/Broker Associate, Getting you to your next with a zero failure rate! (Keller Williams Realty, LA Harbor) about 10 years ago

I had a client who did not qualify for a loan because she was self employed, but her husband did.... because he was on her payroll!

Posted by Wayne B. Pruner, Tigard Oregon Homes for Sale, Realtor, GRI (Oregon First) about 10 years ago

There is alot of deception and fraud going on.  We all nee to be vigilante and avoid these scams, just not worth your career.

Posted by Grace Culver, Advertising (Michigan Homes Network - home advertising and search ) almost 10 years ago

Hi Christopher and Stephanie..... Thanks for sharing.. hopefully we can all learn from that..... Best, Gay

Posted by Gay E. Rosen, As Real as Real Estate Gets! (Julia B. Fee Sotheby's International Realty) almost 10 years ago

Hi Christopher and Stephanie..... Thanks for sharing.. hopefully we can all learn from that..... Best, Gay

Posted by Gay E. Rosen, As Real as Real Estate Gets! (Julia B. Fee Sotheby's International Realty) almost 10 years ago

This one just smacks of violation and was the topic presented by our company attorney on Wednesday this week.

Posted by Karen Crowson, Your Agent for Change (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) almost 10 years ago

I'm sure we have all experienced some Are You Kidding Me moments.  These are good ones.  I'm here from Praful Thakkar's reblog.  He's great at resurrected oldies but goodies. -Kasey

Posted by Kasey & John Boles, Boise & Meridian, ID Ada/Canyon/Gem/Boise Counties (Jon Gosche Real Estate, LLC - over 3 years ago

Whatever is the problem here? You just don't like the idea of three squares and a cot while wearing the same orange jumpsuit everyday?  It never ceases to amaze me with how the general public thinks. Great post!

Posted by Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI, Presence, Persistence & Perseverance (HomeSmart Realty West & Lend Smart Mortgage, Llc.) over 3 years ago

Well, my answer to those two question is No. Anything that is illegal is not funny. 

Posted by Inna Ivchenko, Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA (Barcode Properties) over 3 years ago

Congratulations on the feature in the Rain! Seems we all had our own share of funny situations....

Posted by Inna Ivchenko, Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA (Barcode Properties) over 3 years ago