Your Relationship with a Real Estate Professional
Whether you are new to the world of home buying or haven’t bought or sold a home in BC over this past year, there’s a good chance you might not be caught up with the latest disclosure rules.
In June of 2018, the practice of dual agency was effectively banned in BC. This means Real Estate professionals can no longer represent both a buyer and a seller in the same transaction.
Along with these Rule changes came the introduction of a new form that would shake up what were once ?standard practices? for Real Estate professionals in BC.
What is The Disclosure of Representation in Trading Services?
The Disclosure of Representation in Trading Services is a standard form used to inform consumers of their options when engaging in a Real Estate transaction in BC.
It outlines the key differences between being a client and a non-client, along with the duties owed to you as a client. It also details what it means for you if you choose to be an unrepresented party.
What It Means to be a Client
If you are a client, your Real Estate professional owes you 4 primary duties:
- loyalty: your interests are put first
- avoid conflicts of interest: avoid instances where your best interests are compromised
- full disclosure: disclose all relevant facts
- confidentiality: keep your private information private
When This Form is Used
A consumer should see this form before a Real Estate professional provides trading services. It will also be presented when a consumer engages in a discussion that goes beyond general information. Such information would include details like your financial situation or your motivation to buy or sell.
Disclosure of Representation: 3 Common Misconceptions
After explaining this form countless times, a theme of general concerns started to emerge from consumers. Below are the top three concerns that have come up and some insight into each.
#1: Signing locks me in with that Realtor.
Actually, you can sign as many of the Disclosure of Representation forms as you like, with as many agents as you like. As a consumer, more times than not, you are under no obligation to commit to a particular Real Estate professional.
#2: The Disclosure of Representation is a contract or service agreement.
The Disclosure of Representation is not a contract but rather an acknowledgement that a Real Estate professional has gone through the form before assisting you further.
#3: Consumers must sign the form.
It is stated on the form that consumer signatures are completely optional. While this is the case for consumers, a Real Estate professional must sign and take notes of when/where the form was presented.
Get Informed, Stay informed
As you make your way through your buying or selling journey, always know that as a consumer, the ball is in your court.
It?s important that while your Real Estate professional keeps you informed on the latest Rules, trends, and market updates, consumers take a pro-active approach to stay informed throughout the entire process.
Knowing about forms like the Disclosure of Representation provides consumers with peace of mind and clarity to make an informed decision about the type of representation they are ultimately seeking.