A longtime North Vancouver real estate agent has been found guilty of professional misconduct and of conduct unbecoming a licensee by a disciplinary panel for the Real Estate Council of B.C.
The regulatory body released the decision Sept. 19, following a hearing in April into the conduct of Trevor Inglis of North Vancouver’s Remax Crest Realty.
The council found Inglis engaged in “deceptive dealing” by either faking or changing an offer to purchase his client’s property in Pemberton Heights in 2013.
According to details in the real estate council’s decision, Inglis was co-listing a property on Graveley Street in October 2013 with another real estate agent from Royal LePage Sussex, and had recently reduced the price to just under $1.2 million. When one prospective buyer emailed Inglis to say he’d like to make an offer for a lower amount, Inglis wrote back to say the owners weren’t interested and that other potential buyers who were previously interested in the property had made an offer.
But when the co-listing real estate agent heard about that and asked for a copy of the offer Inglis had received, she thought the document he provided looked unusual. She spoke to her managing broker – who called the real estate council.
According to the disciplinary panel’s written reasons, Inglis testified at the hearing that the offer from a buyer with a last name of “Huang” had been left on the kitchen counter on the property –along with a real estate agent’s business card – at an open house, after he’d given a pre-printed offer form to an “Asian person” who asked for it. He told the council he’d altered the form to delete his own name as the buyer’s agent, and added the real estate agent’s name whose card had been left with the offer.
But that real estate agent told the panel he hadn’t been involved in writing the offer and had not had a client named Huang.
The discipline committee also noted Inglis gave a contradictory version of how he’d received the offer in a message he left for his co-listing agent, saying he’d been handed the offer in person. A handwriting expert called to testify said it was “probable” Inglis wrote the offer himself.
The committee concluded Inglis had changed or made up the offer to create the impression that his story about receiving offers on the property was true, then made “false statements” to both his co-listing agent and the real estate council about it.
When Inglis found out about the investigation, he called the co-listing agent and left her a phone message, according to the panel’s written reasons, saying, “So if you really want to get blackballed you’ve gone to the right person because trust me I wield a bigger bat than you do.” The message continued: “So you’re off my books as far as ever doing a deal. I will never, ever, ever process one of your offers ever. So you’re done.”
Inglis told the committee when he left the message he was extremely upset. The council found in threatening retaliation, Inglis committed “conduct unbecoming a licensee.” A future hearing will determine what penalty Inglis is handed.
Wes MacMillan, the lawyer representing Inglis before the disciplinary panel, said in an emailed statement that “we believe that the council disregarded its own witness who gave key evidence” that backed up Inglis’ version of events. MacMillan said as the case is still before the council “discussion of an appeal is premature.”
The four-bedroom home at 1595 Graveley St. sold for just under the asking price of $1.2 million in December 2013.