Realtors face case on ethics

When a Minneapolis couple offered $8,000 more than the asking price for a home in Brooklyn Park, they were sure they would get it.

According to The Star Tribune, Erica and Mike Lenzen were surprised and a little suspicious when the home was sold to someone else for $2,000 less than what they offered.

When the Lenzens approached the bank representative in charge of selling the foreclosed twin home, she claimed to have no record of the couple's offer, said the Star Tribune. The Lenzens now believe that their offer was withheld by the bank's agents at EXIT Realty Metro, perhaps because the winning bidder had no agent, meaning that the bank earned a larger commission on the final sale.

According to Star Tribune's James Shiffer,the Minnesota Association of Realtors will hear the Lenzen's complaints in a panel hearing on Dec. 17. Though the agents at EXIT Realty deny intentionally withholding the offer and that the extra commission was minimal the embarrassment of being called before the ethics panel has already moved the office to change its procedure for keeping track of the offers they recieve on various properties.

Though EXIT Realty claimed that they never received the couple's offer, they did inform the couple when the bank chose to accept "the highest offer on the table." The couple filed a complaint with the Minnesota Association of Realtor's after investigating the transaction for themselves. The association hears between 75 and 85 ethics hearings a year, reported The Star Tribune.

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