Loyalty, confidentiality and the exercise of the utmost care are just a few of our duties to our clients, what are some others? This week on Escrow Out Loud, our San Francisco Real Estate podcast, we talk about one of the most important, and at the same time least understood, concepts in real estate – agency relationships.
Welcome and hello to our new listeners, you might want to Begin at the Beginning, otherwise, we jump in with a look at real estate agency – what an agent does and what our fiduciary duties entail.
Now that we know what an agent does, let’s talk about who they do it for. There are three types of agency relationships in California, but keep in mind that this does differ by state. Britton gives an overview of buyer agency, seller agency, and dual agency.
People often think dual-agency means that both the buyer and the seller must be working with the same individual i.e, the same exact person with the same exact face! Britton and Matt myth-bust this assumption for us! They explain that the fiduciary relationship goes a level higher than that; the agency relationship is not with an individual agent, it is with the brokerage that holds the license for that agent.
A real-world example: if two different real estate agents from the same brokerage are involved, one representing the seller and the other the buyer, the relationship is dual-agency. This is quite common and is perfectly legal in California but it must be disclosed and accepted. While we are on the subject of agency relationships we also explain the three parts in an agency process relationship; disclosure, election and confirmation.
Finally, how important is the selection of an agent in the process of buying a house? A home is one of the biggest assets you are likely to ever purchase. It makes sense then, to take time in selecting the best people to work with and to have advising you throughout this process, right?
Matt and Britton take us back to a time when information wasn’t so readily available on the internet and share their own experiences in buying their first houses! Back then listings were sent through to them using something called a fax machine and people engaged with an agent much earlier in the process than they do today.
We hope you enjoyed this week’s episode and picked up some new information about agency relationships.
Next week, tune in as we talk about all things offers!
Important Reminder: We aren’t attorneys! We can’t give you legal advice and this isn’t legal advice. If you need a real estate attorney or have a legal question we can suggest some legal resources, but our podcast isn’t a legal resource.