Monday, May 27, 2013

RECBC decisions come under media spotlight with latest realtor misconduct

Meet Marco Vincenzi.

He's the latest realtor to gain notoriety for wrongdoing as the market continues it's slump. 

A slumping market means less sales, and less sales mean less commissions. Do desperate times require desperate measures?

According to CTV's coverage of the story last night, realtor Marco Vincenzi has admitted to forging condo documents, drafting and presenting documents without his client's knowledge, changing offer amounts without permission and keeping his client out of the loop on negotiations... all part of a ploy to increase the size of his realtor sales commission.

According to CTV, Vincenzi's client was making an offer on a Yaletown condo that had languished on the market.  What sparked an offer on the property?  The fact the condo was now being offered with a reduced commission.

Vincenzi took his client's offer, but then tried to make a deal behind her back that would compensate him for the money he stood to lose on that reduced commission.

The client, Janet MacKenzie, was alerted to these shenanigans when the seller's realtor brought them to her attention.
"The way that I found out what had happened was actually when the sellers' realtor had contacted me because she had noticed some discrepancies on the documents with my signatures," said MacKenzie.
MacKenzie went to Vincenzi's real estate office in Coquitlam, and demanded a meeting with his boss, Jason Watson, who insisted in a recorded conversation that Vincenzi’s days as a realtor were done.
"Ultimately by the end of the day, I can't say it will be tomorrow, but probably by Monday he won't have a license," said Jason Watson, managing broker at Sutton Group – West Coast Realty.
This would be a just fate considering these actions appear to be fraud and theft. Which begs the question, were the police called and criminal code charges laid?

Interestingly MacKenzie claims that Janet Watson, the managing brooker at Sutton Group - West Coast Realty told her not to call police.

Watson wanted MacKenzie to let the Real Estate Council of BC handle the matter instead. Mackenzie was assured Vincenzi would lose his license permanently, a punishment she (MacKenzie) felt he richly deserved.

Now faithful readers have commented frequently that the punishments handed out by the RECBC are often nothing more than a minor slap on the wrist, a cost of doing business.

So what happened to Vincenzi?

Originally, a hearing with the Real Estate Council of BC was scheduled for late March, but it was cancelled after Vincenzi agreed to a consent hearing, where he would admit to wrongdoing and agree to accept the council’s punishment.

After 16 months, CTV reports the council finally made a decision, but CTV doesn't reveal what that decision was in today's news story. Presumably that will be the topic of Part 2 to be aired tomorrow.

A quick search of the RECBC disciplinary decisions internet page doesn't reveal any announced decision yet.

Will Vincenzi get the the standard 21 day suspension, requirement to attend training and a $1000 fine? 

Or will he have his licence permanently revoked, a fate this client Janet MacKenzie believes is a punishment he "richly deserves"?

Guess it depends what sort of faith you have in the RECBC.

(hat tip anonymous in comments section of yesterday's post)


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  1. Haha! Faith in the RECBC? Good one!

  2. Is this articlre RE spin? Who is Shawn Groff? I can't find any interest existence except this article.

  3. RECBC discipline is a fckn joke.
    You try that crap in any other profession (legal, medicine, architecture), you'll never work again.

    1. RECBC is a joke, every RE agent knows that....somebody has to pay the dues.

  4. Unfortunately, the only thing newsworthy in this piece is that people from Coquitlam still want to buy Yaletown condos.

  5. Glad you liked it, that's 2 now for me Alphabet Arnie was my first.....

    Still need a criminal investigation though.


  6. that is unreal, and according to one of the comments, he's still a realtor

  7. Looked him up on FB, it says that he's still working for Sutton West Coast Realty, and his mug shot is still on SWCR website. You'd think he'd keep a low profile after his debacle.

  8. Other than minor disciplinary action, nothing else will happen to him. The RECBC will lose more credibility.

  9. I have no idea why Sutton West Coast Realty would still want to see this guys face everyday. The wait for the follow up on Tuesday is worse then a to be continues tv show. Guess this is what MSM is reduced to to try to keep audiences interested in the daily news.

    I am guessing that "Marco" had a different name when doing the scam and has since changed it to "Marco".

  10. I've never heard of RECBC issuing a permanent suspension of a trading license. Agree that there should be some greater authority looking into this.

  11. The Sun and Province I see are doing their job to help RE so far by keeping this story on the sidelines.

    This guy should be fired from his position and have his license revoked permanently. His sick plan goes way beyond making a mistake or being negligent or unaware.

  12. The follow up on CTV reports $1250 fine and 4 month suspension for the fraud. Marco was also a victim in this case as he had financial hardships at the time due to an upcoming wedding. What a joke, commit fraud, forgery and misrepresentation and get a $1250 fine and 4 month suspension?

  13. He will be yuking it up on his honeymoon in June. Big punishment, alright! I am sure he will be rubbing his hand together and laughing that he pulled it off as he drinks beers on the beach in Mexico

  14. And don't forget the financial hardship he was facing when he could not upgrade from a 3 series BMW to a 6 series. There - $1250 fine...that'll learn ya not to get caught again and embarrass the RECBC.

  15. I still say we should all be promoting more public humiliation and spankings on CTV but Whisperer does not seem to approve of my idea.


    Awww, he only had $90,000 in commissions this year and felt pressure to get to $100K and pay for his upcoming wedding.

    Still no coverage in the Sun and Province.

  17. overthepond:

    Some realtors have lost their licenses permanently for contravening the RESA, but it has to be serious. As much as people may not like this comment, this infraction is not as serious as it can get. The buyer apparently got the property, and I'm not sure she lost any money. Don't construe that as me making excuses for the realtor, but as anyone who watches the market knows, it can be much worse (can you say buy house in Okanagon unseen, relying on the agent's home inspector? If not, google it).

    There are just over 11,000 member agents in the REBGV. While the dishonest realtor got the headline here, it was honest realtors who blew the whistle on him.


    The $90 k is gross, not net.


    "I still say we should all be promoting more public humiliation and spankings on CTV..."

    Isn't forgery a crime? Unless you're the same Anonymous who wrote "Still need a criminal investigation though." If there was a crime committed there should be criminal proceedings. If there are not criminal proceedings then either a crime wasn't committed or the government doesn't care. I'm certainly curious about that.

    One thing not mentioned much is that discount listings (which are completely legal and always have been, despite what the Competition Bureau alleges) can contribute to this sort of thing (needlessly, as there are ways to do that business easily), but consumers should make themselves aware of the ins and outs of the process. Knowledge is the best protection, and if you know where to look for it, ti's free.

    1. Are you SERIOUS Rob?
      As a realtor, you should be ashamed and try to clean up your industry instead of defending it.

      what happened to fiduciary duty?
      forging legal documents = slap on wrist?
      Shame on you all

    2. As i wrote:

      " If there was a crime committed there should be criminal proceedings. If there are not criminal proceedings then either a crime wasn't committed or the government doesn't care. I'm certainly curious about that. "

      As far as I know, forgery is a crime. I haven't seen the evidence, however, so I'm not in a position to judge.

      What we've seen is a report from a reporter.

      What I'd like to see is a) the reporter commenting on why the police aren't involved b)some police involvement if there isn't a reason for them to not be involved.

      It seems clear that he breached his fiduciary duty. The buyer has a claim on the commission he earned (wait, he didn't earn one). The buyer has a claim for damages (wait, were there actual damages that a court would award?)

      You might not like the result, but I'm not defending the realtor in question. I'm just pointing out that it is a minor case in terms of damage done to the buyer (because honest realtors caught the problem and reported it).

      You are probably already aware that if the REC throws the book at a guy who got caught before he could actually do measurable harm in a case where damages are limited, the guilty party would have an excellent chance to appeal.

      And it's not lost on me that the realtor in question has given all 11,000+ of us a black eye, including the guys who blew the whistle on him.

      Want more punishment for him? 1) Ask why the cops aren't looking at it, and 2) send a letter to the REC.

  18. I know buddy from way back, this is NOT the first scam he has pulled! Watch out!

  19. If in Securities indutries, it is so very serious. You will be immediately suspended. Out of the financial industry, and it is permanently. With much heavier monetary penalties, like in tens of thousands of dollars.

    What if, your stock broker just short of $10,000 commission to be "the best advisors of the month" in the house, can he give excuses that he was in pressure to make more commission on whatever the way he can.
    Buy and sell stocks without client's consent, forged buy / sell documents?
    Cannot happen!

  20. >Rob

    That's true, the buyer may not lose money on the deal. Oe besides, there might be other deals behind.

    In other industries, like medicine, law, or securities, fraud will not end when victims are compensated.
    It has to be regulated, panished no matter what the material damage is covered.

    1. I can't disagree.

      The question is: who punishes the offender for what, and how? You can have the REC punish him for poor conduct (even conduct so poor that it appears to be criminal), but you can't have them try and punish him as a criminal. That's up to the police and the courts, as I think we all agree it should be.

      I certainly recognize that there is a possibility that the offender has done this many times and been caught only once, but until we prove that we can't punish him for it. I have investigated both types of realtors for ethical breaches in the past - those that are dishonest and those who make honest mistakes. I don't mind that latter but I want the former out of the business.

      11,000+ agents in the Vancouver Board. You can see all complaints that resulted in discipline for all BC realtors here:

      You can do the math, and you can also check if offenders remain in the business or leave by doing a search on them after the fact here:

    2. What about a slap on the wrist from the E & O insurance, such as a higher insurance rate?
      He may be viewed as a high risk.
      Also, maybe during the 4 month suspension, he could take the ethics course again at Sauder.


  21. wow! wow! wow !

    What if we all did something unethical because we were under pressure. A wedding, come on, some people are struggling to feed their families.
    I think that he should lose his licence permanently. He did not make a
    mistake, he deliberately did something unethical. If the police are not
    involved they should be. ( forging someones signature on a legal document) This guy doesn't seem remorseful, he is only sorry that he got caught. He makes excuses for his bad behaviour. I hope that if he does not lose his licence that his wrong doings are kept alive by word of mouth, and he never sees his $100,000.00 salary again!!!!!!

  22. He just got suspended again for actually working as a Realtor WHILE being suspended. His punishment is another 60 day suspension (which I am sure he will work thru again) and a whopping $1250 fine.

    Real Estate Council is toothless.