We sold our Union City house with Steve Dhillon in March 2006. Overall, we were not very happy with the experience and would not use him again or recommend him. Here's our experience:
- Our house needed work before going on the market. Painting, new carpets, new blinds. Steve organized most of this: got the estimates, supervised the work (we were out of town). The cost estimates were pretty reasonable. He had good ideas and suggestions on the most cost-effective materials to use.
- He's the #1 Union City selling agent and looks to have good marketing skills. His initial presentation was impressive.
- Communication, communication, communication. After the sale, I wanted to get in touch with him to get receipts for all the work done and settle our accounts. He simply did not return any of my e-mails or phone calls for a period of 2 months. I was finally able to get a hold of him on his cell phone, but it was an ordeal.
We were out of town while the house was on the marked. Steve also never called during that period to update us on how the open houses were going. We had to call and wait for a response a few days later.
One of our bathrooms had a sticky shower door that needed to be replaced. Many of the agents and buyers looking at the house commented on this. Steve promised numerous times that he would get this fixed but it never happened. He later told us that the shower door was apparently an unusual size and needed to be special
ordered. But there was plenty of time: almost 2 full months between when the work started and when we got the first offer on the house.
- He charges the full 5% commission. He claims better marketing skills as one of the reasons for this. It's clear that he benefits from better marketing; less clear that our house sale benefited much. The final sale price on the house was lower than the minimum he initially quoted, and in retrospect does not look particularly competitive with other houses sold in the area around March 2006.
After the sale, he also held over $500 for "repairs" and charged us an extra $395. After I finally got a hold of him, he agreed to refund the $395, but we are yet to see the money 2 months later. The $500 seems to have fallen into a black hole. His follow through after the sale was completed has been simply atrocious.
- He had initially lined up his favorite/preferred handyman to do most of the work on the house (painting, flooring, blinds). We initially estimated it would take 2 weeks and the house would be on the market by Christmas 2005. We even moved out earlier so that they could start work on time. But his handyman ended up being too busy and delayed the whole process. In the end, it took 4 weeks and the house went on the market only in the 2nd week of January. Even so, there were items (like the shower door) that did not get fixed.