The confusion began in 1999, when Trombly and Oliphant asked Saslove to sell a vacant Brush Creek lot. Saslove made a mistake in the contract he prepared for the sale, stating the lot had a water tap when it did not. The water tap was worth $25,000.
Thus, Saslove agreed to contribute his $13,000 commission on the property, with the condition that he be allowed to list the next property they put on the market.
A written agreement was drawn up and signed, though there was no specific "next property" and, the court of appeals decided, future terms were needed for the contract to be legal.
First, this agent made a costly mistake and helped pay for the mistake with the commission earned on the sale. That part was good... well at least good on him for owning up to the mistake. I don't feel for the guy though, sure mistakes happen and there is liability for those mistakes. The agent here did as right as he could considering the circumstances surrounding his mistake.
I'm sure the agent knew that his clients held some other valuable real estate in the area and soon he would have the opportunity to make up for his mistake by providing better service.
Then the clients sold a parcel of their property holdings, and if you read the article (and if the article is true), the clients didnt' put the property on the market. Apparently many offers were simply made to the sellers. This happens, this happens a lot actually.
Over the last few years I've taken calls from property owners that were getting offers in the mail. Multiple offers on many occasions. These owners called me to verify if the offering price was legit based on the current market. Whatever my answer was... I was not entitled to any commission if the owners opted to sell to the party making an offer.
And in my opinion (again, I'm no lawyer), this agent in Colorado has no claim to a commission either. He was not hired to provide a service for the client, therefore no commission.
Just because an agent takes a few calls from a property owner does not entitle the agent to be an automatic partner and beneficiary to a property transfer.
I consider the suit filed by the agent from Colorado a black eye to the Real Estate business.