Earlier I posted on what a Buyer’s Agent is, or is supposed to be. Today I want to go after Seller’s Agency. Probably the most abused agency, in my opinion. Again, let’s see what the State of Kansas has to say about what the duties of a Seller’s Agent are.
The seller’s agent represents the seller only, so the buyer may be either unrepresented or represented by another agent.
The seller’s agent is responsible for performing the following duties:
· promoting the interests of the seller with the utmost good faith, loyalty, and fidelity
· protecting the seller’s confidences, unless disclosure is required
· presenting all offers in a timely manner
· advising the seller to obtain expert advice
· accounting for all money and property received
· disclosing to the seller all adverse material facts about the buyer that the agent knows
· disclosing to the buyer all adverse material facts actually known by the agent, including the following:
Ø environmental hazards affecting the property that are required to be disclosed
Ø the physical condition of the property
Ø any material defects in the property or in the title to the property
Ø any material limitation on the seller’s ability to complete the contract.
The seller’s agent has no duty to:
· conduct an independent inspection of the property for the benefit of the buyer
· independently verify the accuracy or completeness of any statement by the seller or any qualified third party.
The matter seems pretty self explanatory. Where I see it run in to trouble is on the every day application. You see, many a real estate agent out there gets so excited when they receive a call off of one of their signs or ads that they will readily throw their Seller under the bus in the wink of an eye. Forgetting that they (the agent) signed an Exclusive Right To Sell Agreement with the Seller when the house is listed they immediately will want to buddy up to the caller, answer all of their questions and have a great chance of either obtaining the caller as a new Buyer to work with, or better yet, selling the home they called about and thus earning both sides of the commission.
Now, stop just for a second. It’s okay to to assist a Buyer and a Seller in the sale of a home. It’s called being a Transaction Broker in Kansas. And it will be discussed in the next post. What is not okay is violating agency to do it.