Ethics and Character Issues - Posted by domineaux_TX

Posted by Stew(NE) on November 14, 2003 at 14:01:33:

I met with a lawyer who specializes in Foreclosure. He knows that I buy houses at the auction. I show him my purchase contract and he said, “What you need is a separate document that explains in plain english what you are doing and that they understand.” I said, really?
Then I show him the Best Darn Document and he was happy (as happy as a lawyer can be) The only thing he thought I should add is a statement at the end that they initial that they were read everything in this document. So I added that. I can just see someone in court saying, Yes I initial it, but I didn’t read it. Hee-Hee Gotta love people.

Ethics and Character Issues - Posted by domineaux_TX

Posted by domineaux_TX on November 14, 2003 at 10:47:21:

I think it is often within the power of my hand to take advantage of people. It doesn’t happen often, but it does and to be honest I’m darned uncomfortable with it.

The worse cases are when the person I’m dealing with is one of those vulnerable individuals. Widows, newly divorced, inheritors, etc. Working with them makes me so uncomfortable, especially if they make the burden of making the deal my job.

When they say,“well what do you think”, when they should be doing the thinking really is annoying. It also, puts me on alert.

When I’m working with these weak kneed indivduals frequently I advise they get counsel. I know lawyers and accountants are deal killers, along with other third parties. Persons, who aren’t involved in paying or selling or financing the transaction are a big nuisance.

BUT…I also hate the friggin’ lawsuits that can pop up and create havoc in my life. Those weak kneed individuals always have someone to consult with, and it’s better to just get it done up front. It’ll sure save on litigation later, because you can bet if you frame the deal and they just sign on the line. There is always probability you’ll be hearing from them in court.

A rule of thumb…if they can’t make a decision before the deal, because of muddled thinking or lack of decision ability, and you’ve got to make it happen, the same muddled decision making and questioning goes on after the deal. Second guessing, sellers/buyers remorse, etc.

I try to be very objective with the vulnerable ones, and most importantly I really address “MONEY & TERMS CLEARLY EXPLAINED EVEN A LITTLE HARSHLY, ABSOLUTELY NO UNCERTAINTY ABOUT I"M GONNA MAKE MONEY IN THE INVESTMENT. THEY SHOULD HAVE COUNSEL BECAUSE THEY MAY NOT BE MAKING THE BEST DEAL FOR THEMSELVES”. If you get into litigation, you’ll find that course of action is respected by the courts. The court may still put the screws in you, if the plaintiff is a little ole’ widow woman. Something about fairness.

I think it does take character in the business, and I mean good character. In fact, I doubt you could survive over the long term without it.

So, if your little ole’ grandmother wants to sell her farm you can always call me to do the deal. I sure as heck won’t wind up with it… LOL

Re: Ethics and Character Issues - Posted by Miguel (N CA)

Posted by Miguel (N CA) on November 14, 2003 at 12:16:29:


It’s good to hear you have a fundamentally sound conscience. Not everyone in this business does.

I happen to use that “Best Darned Document in the World” Seller’s Acknowledgement form that I got from this board. It outlines to the seller everything they should be aware of, some of which you’ve mentioned above. Twenty two points in all, and they have to initial every one of them.

I’m not a big fan of surprises down the road and I think the seller feels the same. So I ALWAYS make sure the seller knows EVERYTING about EVERYTHING. This includes telling every potential seller UP FRONT that they can more money on thier property selling it themselves. I even tell them how to do it if they want to know. Doing things this way may have killed some deals but at least my conscience is clear and I’ve given them good reason to trust me.

I haven’t been hit with a lawsuit yet but I guess it’s just a matter of time. The worst to happen so far was with a woman I had a contract with. She sounded quite sure of what she wanted when we signed. Two weeks later she was screaming and cursing at me on the phone telling me I was trying to cheat and take advantage of her. I eventually let her out of her contract for $500.

I think we have an obligation to do “the right thing” when we’re dealing with people…in ANY situation.


Re: Ethics and Character Issues - Posted by Anon

Posted by Anon on November 14, 2003 at 11:45:19:

Well said. I never try to take advantage of people in those types of situations. I sleep well at night (sometimes a little hungry but tomorrow is another day) as I’m sure you do too. Congrats!