Phoenix-based brokerage Realty Executives Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization on Saturday to give the company breathing room from creditors as it cuts overhead expenses and rolls out new pricing plans for agents.

Owner Richard Rector said Friday the 1,100-agent brokerage has been renegotiating leases on 14 offices Phoenix and Tucson with an equal number of landlords. Difficulties with two landlords that resulted in Realty Executive agents being temporarily locked out of three offices led Rector to conclude that seeking protection from creditors in bankruptcy court was his best option.

"It’s impossible for agents and brokers to do their business with those kinds of interruptions," Rector said. "Unfortunately, a couple of landlords have been uncooperative, forcing our hand and putting other landlords who we’d worked things out with at a disadvantage, too."

Realty Executives was sued by one of its landlords last month. The lawsuit alleges that after obtaining a rent deferment and lease amendment, Realty Executives moved its Pinnacle Peak office in Scottsdale to another building, leaving $142,964 in rent and other sums due under its lease unpaid.

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