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Its not just unethical, it’s downright illegal.
by Neil Jenman

What’s the matter with us, today?

As consumers, are we so intimidated and so fearful of confrontation that we will tolerate almost any form of deception? It appears so. In real estate, it happens every day. Here’s just one of thousands of examples.

An agent quotes prospective homesellers a price of $350,000 to $370,000. Based on this quote, the sellers sign-up with the agent. The agent then advertises the home for $300,000 (with a small + sign after the price). A couple of months later, the home is not sold and the agent says to the owners, “You need to lower your price.” The owners refuse and, instead, decide not to sell. They tell the agent to remove the sign. They think that’s the end of the matter.

But then, a few days later, the agent sends the owners a bill for $3,000 for “marketing expenses”.

But wait a minute. The agent lied to persuade the owners to sign-up for sale; the agent then lied to attract buyers and, finally, when the agent’s lies are exposed (because the property does not sell for the promised price) the owners have to fork out thousands of dollars. If they complain, the agent threatens them with legal action. And so the owners – like meek little mice – pay up. This is madness.

What’s the matter with us today? Can’t we see that being lied to and deceived is something we should never tolerate? Never.

Unfortunately, over time, most of us have become so conditioned to expect poor service that we have come to accept what was once regarded as totally unacceptable behaviour. Well, there are some things we should never accept. One of them is being lied to about a service or product and then being expected to pay for it.

Here’s another example – and one which probably none of us would tolerate.

A couple of Saturdays ago, I was at a mega-shopping plaza with my little daughter. Outside the cinema complex was one of those wonderful sweet smorgasboards. I couldn’t resist the chocolate-coated sultanas. I grabbed a bag and shoveled in some generous spoonfuls. Total cost $7.75.

As we headed down the escalators, I popped a handful into my mouth. Yuk, they were chocolate peanuts…..more

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