Archive for the ‘Agent Ethics’ Category

Defect Disclosures in Real Estate

Posted on: August 15th, 2016 by Margaret No Comments

As a certified real estate mediator, I have seen an increase in calls from dissatisfied buyers complaining that sellers did not disclose property defects. It is important if you are a seller to disclose all known defects on the property if you are trying to sell your home. In addition, it should be disclosed if you had an insurance claim in the last 5 years (preferably any and all insurance claims) or all repair work done, even if you think the problem has been fixed. Issues can arise when a buyer encounters a similar problem that was not disclosed and thinks the seller is attempting to hide defects. The best policy is to carefully review with your REALTOR every insurance claim, upgrade, remodel and repair done on the property from the time you purchased the home. That may seem like an overwhelming task, but open disclosure to your buyers may decrease your risk of legal issues in the longer run.

Do You Treat All Parties Honestly?

Posted on: May 29th, 2012 by Margaret No Comments

As the Chairman of the AAR Grievance Committee, I have an important question for you: “In the business of real estate, do you treat all parties honestly?” If not, you could find yourself on the receiving end of a Grievance Complaint.

Realtors, through membership with a local association, CAR and NAR, have agreed to abide by the Realtor Code of Ethics. The Code of Ethics is our set of rules, or to put it simply, our road map in the business of real estate.

Our first and foremost allegiance is to our client, but we cannot just focus on one party’s interest at the expense of everyone else in the transaction. Article 1 of the Code of Ethics says that we have a fiduciary duty to the client, but that we also have a responsibility to be honest with all parties involved.

Here are a few tips to help you stay in compliance:


1. Don’t deliberately mislead an owner as to the market value of his or her property.

2. Don’t mislead a client as to savings or other benefits that might be realized through the use of a Realtor’s services.

3. Don’t use false information or alarming tactics to motivate a client to act.

4. Don’t reveal the client’s private or confidential information.


1. Do put your client’s best interests before your own.

2. Do present offers and counter-offers objectively and as quickly as possible.

3. Do provide full disclosure and get written consent if you are representing more than one side in a transaction.

4. Do act with courtesy and fairness towards all parties in the transaction.