New platform to clarify bidding wars

by Justin da Rosa27 Mar 2015
With regulations around bidding wars about to change, one broker has developed a piece of technology he believes will revolutionize the real estate industry and make the home-buying process much more transparent.
“If you talk to any real estate agent, the multiple offer process is just as frustrating for us as for consumers,” says Adam Brind, the broker of record for Core Assets Real Estate in Toronto. “DealDocket will help to streamline a consistent process across the board.”
DealDocket, which Brind co-founded with Drew Donaldson, the executive vice president of SafeBridge Financial, allows real estate agents to register every bid made on a property. Bidders, meanwhile, will be given access to each of the bids made to ensure a fair process.
The technology was also a response to pending regulations. The Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO) recently announced it will adopt changes to REBBA 2002 that will require brokerages to retain a copy of every offer made on a property in an attempt to prevent phantom offers.
Those changes, which come into effect on July 1, will make it even more challenging for agents to keep an organized database since the amount of information that needs to be catalogued is more than doubling in some cases.
“We’re all dealing with the same problem,” Brind says. “I think the biggest thing is database management. As of July 1, we’ll be mandated to keep accepted offers (on file) for six years and declined offers for one year. So even if we (catalogued the offers) by scanning them, it’s manpower we just don’t have.”
With the DealDocket system, the buying agent uploads the client’s offer directly to DealDocket, which timestamps the offer. The listing agent, meanwhile, has all the offers organized and summarized in the system.
In addition to organizing offers for the listing agent, the platform can also help to calm a potential buyer’s mind after a transaction – whether they were successful or not.
“I think every agent has dealt with upset or disgruntled buyers,” Brind says. “They go into these offer situations and they’re frustrated. If they lose, they want to know how much they lost by or if they won, they think they overpaid.”
While clients can’t see a competing offer in its entirety, they can log in to the system and see the number of offers, the brokerage from which it came and the time it was received. Clients can also see when their offer was opened and in what order it was received.
“There is definitely some validity in providing a platform that provides accountability,” Brind says. “If someone loses, at least they lost fair and square.”
Donaldson and Brind conceived of the idea after seeing too many clients lose out in bidding wars.
“It wasn’t that they lost it was that they didn’t know what happened,” Donaldson said. “They didn’t know if it was fair; there was no real regulation on it – Realtors are emailing back and forth offers to purchase and there was a huge lack of transparency.”
The platform is set for launch in Ontario with plans to launch it Canada-wide within the next month. It boasts bank-level encryption and the eventual goal, according to Donaldson, is to have a DealDocket number on every MLS listing.
“It benefits everyone; the real estate agent, the buyer, the seller, the regulator,” Donaldson said. “There is more compliance and, honestly, it’s a win on every level.”
Some of the program’s features include:
•             Timestamps all incoming offers
•             Provides full disclosure in multiple representation situations
•             Creates an auto summary of all offers
•             Standardizes the multiple offer process

Have your say: Would you use an offer-organizing platform, like DealDocket?

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