Before I post this link I’d just like to give the following disclaimer: most realtors are honest professionals that will give you good advice on buying and selling and not take advantage of you, but I guess there’s always an exception to the rule.
Vancouver realtors Dian Dai-Qing Gao and her husband Norman Chan of Sutton-Killarney Realty have been ordered by the BC supreme court to hand over profits from a flipped condo to the original owners.
The couple had purchased a new home in West Vancouver and listed their condo for sale at $529,900 with Gao*(see note below). They had accepted an offer for $517,500 but the day the offer was to go through it collapsed, the court was told.
At this point Gao and Chan decided to purchase it themselves. The couple testified that they were assured by Gao that the apartment wouldnâ€™t be flipped but would be kept by the realtors as an investment. Six days after Gao took possession of the condo it was listed for sale at over $100,000 more than she had paid for it.
Justice Janet Sinclair Prowse found that Gao had breached a fiduciary duty she had with the couple and ordered her to repay them the profit of about $70,000 she made in flipping the property.
So if a realtor offers to buy the property you’re selling, should you be suspicious?
*Joel Korn of Sutton Group Killarney writes in to point out that the linked article is incorrect on this point. Gao was not the listing agent, the property was listed through Ralph F. Oakes according to the property info sheet.