South Florida Realtors Understand Deposit

South Florida Realtors Understand Deposit


South Florida Realtors Understand DepositDo South Florida Realtors understand deposit situation when the sign a listing contract or take a deposit on the clients behalf? Do they understand when they are taking “other people’s” money how to handle the deposit?

In Florida, an agent has until the next business day to turn over a collected fund to their broker. The broker has until the third business day to deposit this money in their broker trust account or hand it over to a title company or a real estate attorney.

While having this rules under the Florida Statute, it shocks me when another agent claims the commission to be paid direct from a deposit and let me questioning  if  South Florida Realtors really understand what they are doing or supposed to do with a deposit received.

Let’s see the circumstances where we represent the tenant in that transaction.

The tenant who made an offer to rent for a Fort Lauderdale Oceanfront properties, represented the contract with the clause to pay one month rent as a deposit after 24h of contract signing directly to the Landlord. Other contingency included receiving within 24h association documents, rules and regulation, the application and the Landlords lease within two days. We received a verbal contract acceptation by the other site and the written acceptance after two days. This meant that the lease should be provided within 2 days of that date. We did not receive the lease in a timely manner  and the tenant therefore did not put a deposit down while the seller violated the contract terms in their opinion.

We kept the property in mind and after 4 days finally we received the association application, the association rules and regulation but not the lease.  After a week the lease was finally sent over with different terms stated and different from the initial contract and changes had to be made. At this point it was clear that the other agent did not follow the initial contract for lease, had in my opinion no understanding of her responsibilities and was very floozy within the whole transaction process.

We made the changes in the lease which reflected the contract terms and everyone finally signed off. Right away, when the ink was not even dry yet and to my surprise the listing agent instructed me the coop broker,  how to pay her commission instead of the tenant paying the security deposit to the Landlord!

South Florida Realtors Understand Deposit? We are paying a commission? We are not paying the Landlord but instead her?  If we would receive the tenants money for the Landlord we should take that trusted money and pay out commission? We should collect deposit without a named escrow agent? Confused and stunt. The instruction whereas follow:

“When you do the deposit make mine a money order to XXXX (Broker)group for the half of the rent of $788 and send a copy of your half.”

Since we did not collect any or attempt to collect to make any deposits and had no contractual obligation to do so I wrote back and explained that the deposit will be made as contracted with the Landlord and she needs to review her listing contract how she will get paid by her client but that we will not pay any commission to the listing broker and that we will not collect the Landlords deposits while there is no other contract obligation to do so.

In my opinion, she could be in really deep water if she takes clients’ money without putting it into escrow and paying her directly from entrusted money as she claimed she does this all the time.

A deposit is to be deposit into an escrow and cannot be paid out with concrete instruction.  Thinking she understood the reason that we are the coop broker, that we will not collect deposits for the Landlord (her client) and that we will not pay commission to her or her brokerage and that she needs to review her listing contract how she gets paid and how we will then get paid as well.

She accepted and requested a W-9 which we supplied immediately to her.

This morning I received a text from her stating follow:

“how do you plan on giving all the deposits and my part of the Commission”

We are not planning on giving any deposits to her in fact, the tenant paid after the interview the security deposit, first and last month rent directly to the Landlord and as contracted under the lease obligation. This we explained again that she can not as the listing agent receive any deposits and that we will not pay her or her brokerage a commission since a commission was offered by them as the listing broker to the coop broker in the MLS.

South Florida Realtors Understand Deposit?

I am still speechless and wonder if the South Florida Broker knows of her doing and I am wondering if South Florida Realtors really understand a deposit and how to handle those how described by the Florida Real Estate Commission.

I am glad I didn’t take any deposits in this case and escrowed it into a Title agency accounts. This could become an even bigger headache if the money needs to be released.

Hoping that South Florida Realtors really understand a deposit now and that one getting in big trouble if they don’t follow the rules. If someone tells you to something it doesn’t mean it is correct. If you are unsure about a situation think, think logic and ask. Especial for deposit violations you can risk your license and the license of your broker too.

Deposit money we receive from clients would not belong to us it belonged to the buyer/ tenant  and the buyer/ landlord and needs to be accounted for accordingly.

Sometimes I am just scared of those Realtors who don’t really understand a deposit and don’t know what they are doing.  You try to explain and educate them and they are not listening or just think they are above everything. Now let’s see if we receive our commission as the coop broker and as offered in the MLS. I only can hope for that.  But in general, do  South Florida Realtors Understand Deposit and in every profession, there is a bad apple.

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