Being in the mortgage industry we see and study the ebbs and flows of the…
Yes, you can act as your own real estate agent. Anyone can represent themselves in a real estate transaction, even if they are not a licensed real estate agent. As an agent, you have unique access to real estate resources and listings.
Professional Relationship Disclosure
Where it gets tricky is that you must disclose any professional relationship that you have with the other party’s real estate agent, if they are using one. For example, if you are buying a home and the seller is using one of your colleagues as their agent, this can be a conflict of interest. Your colleague likely wants to see you get a great deal but they are also professionally obligated to work on behalf of their client, the seller. So what should you do?
You and your colleague can disclose to the seller that this is the scenario in writing. If the seller agrees, the deal can continue on without any issues. This falls under the same ethical and legal requirements as being a dual agent, when a single agent represents both buyer and seller.
However, you should proceed with caution. Even if you and your colleague act with integrity, the seller may not be happy with the outcome and question what happened. This might lead to a lawsuit, even if they signed a disclosure. Even if you are found not in violation, legal fees and the cost to reputations can be a lot. It’s best to steer clear of this situation so as not to find yourself in a legal mess.
Instead, use your wide range of resources to search for homes listed for sale by people you do not know or firms that you have not worked with. This can be challenging in smaller markets or if you are actively involved in networking in your local market.