Do You Know Who Your Realtor® Works For? Agency Explained Part II of II

Do You Know Who Your Realtor® Works For?

If you missed Part I of II you can easily check out that blog post, Do You Know Who Your Realtor® Works For? Part I of II  In it I explained the two most common forms of Agency in North Carolina:  Buyers Agency and Sellers Agency.  Definitely worth a read!

There are two additional types of Agency in North Carolina which can and often do leave many home buyers and home sellers Agency Explainedscratching their heads in confusion.  Here they are with, hopefully, simple explanations to help you with the answer when you are asked, “Do You Know Who Your Realtor® Works For?”

Dual Agency:  Dual Agency occurs most often when a broker has a buyer for one of his own listings.  With prior approval from the home seller the broker is permitted to represent BOTH the buyer and the seller in the SAME transaction

Well, but, wait a minute, Leesa!  In the first post, Do You Know Who Your Realtor® Works For? Part I of II, you said that a broker has Fiduciary Duties to their principal so how, then, can the broker represent both parties?  I can only answer with the definition from the N.C. Real Estate Commission which is:

“It may be difficult for a  Dual Agent to advance the interests of both the Buyer and Seller.  Nevertheless, a Dual Agent must treat buyers and sellers fairly and equally.  Although the Dual Agent owes them the same duties, buyers and sellers can prohibit Dual Agents from divulging certain confidential information about them to the other party”….. “If you choose the Dual Agency option, remember that since the agent’s loyalty is divided between parties with competing interests, it is especially important that you have a clear understanding of what your relationship is with the Dual Agent and what the Dual Agent will be doing for you in the transaction.”

Does that give you cause for pause?  There is one final option that will let both buyers and sellers breathe a little easier when faced with Dual Agency and it’s called Designated Agency.  

Designated Agency:  So, let’s assume that a broker has a buyer for one of his own listings as in the case above in Dual Agency.  If the broker’s firm offer Designated Agency then another agent in the firm can be “designated” to represent the buyer (or seller).  This option then allows the Agents involved to represent the principals more fully.  Please keep in mind, not all firms offer Designated Agency so that is certainly one question that you will want to ask your agent before signing a listing agreement or a Buyer’s Agency Agreement.

ConfidentialAnd, if you need a refresher from the first post, Do You Know Who Your Realtor® Works For?  Part I of II, here the Fiduciary Duties once again!  Don’t worry, I won’t be testing you but I do want to be sure you are as informed as you can be! 

  1. Loyalty and Obedience – (follow your lawful instructions and promote your best interests)
  2. Accounting – (account for all monies they handle for you)
  3. Disclosure of Information – (provide you with all material facts which may influence your decision)
  4. Skill, Care, and Diligence
  5. Confidentiality

As I always sign off my posts…..If you have any questions you can ALWAYS feel free to call me at 919-649-6128 or simply send me an email – it’s just that easy!


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