Disclaimer: This article is not intended to be legal advice. Legal advice depends on each and every person’s particular circumstance. If you have a related issue, you should consult with your lawyer who practices law in your state regarding your particular circumstance. This article is for informational purposes only.
He marched into my office after he slammed the door shut behind him.
His face was grim and his fists were balled up. He plopped down in the chair across from my desk, and he took several deep breaths and exhaled slowly. After he calmed down, he looked at me and flashed an apologetic smile. Calgary homes for sale
After a few seconds, he then demanded: “Just who did he represent?! I thought he was representing ME!”
I smiled at him cautiously. Then, I carefully asked him: “Who? Who did you think was representing you?” “The Realtor!” he bellowed. “I was the buyer-and he called himself the buyer’s agent-but he was not representing me! He was supposed to be representing me!”
“What made you believe that he was representing you?” I asked.
“He’s a real estate agent. He was the agent for the buyer-and I was the buyer. That means he was representing me, right? He had to protect my interests over everyone else’s right?”
“It’s… not… that…. simple….” I replied slowly, attempting not to anger him further. “Let me see your contract with your real estate agent and all the disclosures your real estate gave to you.”
After reviewing his paperwork, I replied “No, your real estate agent was a transactional broker-he did not owe you a duty of loyalty. In other words, he did not have to put your interests ahead of his own.”
“You’ve got to be kidding!”
“No. I’m not….”
WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?
Many potential buyers and sellers work with real estate agents. These buyers and sellers hire realtors with the thought that these professionals “represent” them. These buyers and sellers believe that these professionals must protect their best interests over everyone else’s in the transaction.
However, this is simply not the law in states like Florida. In Florida, Florida Statutes §475.278 clearly provides that the presumption is that a realtor acts as a “transaction broker”-and does not owe a fiduciary duty to its client.