The term "agency" is used to describe any relationship in which a real estate broker acts for or represents another in a real estate transaction. There are several types of agency relationships.
The most common agency relationships are that of Buyer's Agent, Seller's Agent and Dual Agent.
The BUYER'S AGENT represents the Buyer in the real estate transaction. The Buyer is the Client in this relationship, and the Buyer's Agent has the following responsibilities to the client: loyalty, disclosure, confidentiality, obedience, reasonable care and diligence, and accounting for all funds. If you are not represented as a Client, you are a Customer.
Georgia law requires
a written agreement
the real estate broker/agent and a Buyer Client. A Buyers
agreement establishes that your agent represents you in the search and
purchase of a home, and you agree to work only with that
This agreement can be for one day, a week, a month, or any period of
If you enjoy visiting Open Houses or new home communities on the
be sure to inform the host agent that you have a Buyer's Agent.
Buyer's Agent will assist you in your lender selection
and loan pre-qualification, home search, tour of listed homes that meet
your criteria, assist you in writing an offer for purchase, and present
that offer to the listing agent for the seller's consideration.
After the Purchase
and Sale Agreement is negotiated, the Buyer's Agent
will schedule or assist you in scheduling your independent home
inspection, and assist you in the negotiation of the Amendment to
Remove Inspection Contingency. (I make every effort to attend
home inspections to be another pair of eyes and ears).
It is the Buyer's
Agent's responsibility to guide the buyer through
preparations for closing, review of the lender's Good Faith
Estimate and HUD 1 (Settlement Statement), ordering of the hazard
insurance policy and final property survey. The Buyer's
Agent should attend the closing with the buyers.
The SELLER'S AGENT (LISTING AGENT) represents the Seller in the transaction, and the Seller is the Client. The Seller's Agent has the same fiduciary responsibilities to the Seller as the Buyer's Agent has to the Buyer. The client relationship is established through a Listing Agreement, in which the term and all conditions of the listing are determined.
Depending on the
Listing Agreement, the Listing Agent may have the
responsibility for ordering, maintaining and paying for initial and
ongoing marketing. The Listing Agent keeps track of
property showings, makes every attempt to get constructive feedback
from showing agents, and guides the Seller in creating the environment
for the home to sell at the best price and terms.
When an offer comes
in, the Listing Agent will review the offer with
the Sellers and explain all aspects of the offer and their impact on
the Sellers' legal position and net proceeds. The Listing Agent
will assist the Sellers in preparing the home for a home inspection and
negotiating the Amendment to Remove Inspection Contingency.
The Listing Agent
may also track the progress of the Buyer's loan, and
keep in touch with the Selling Agent in regard to home repairs, termite
reports, and closing details.
an agent who represents
both the Buyer and Seller in
single transaction and has a fiduciary responsibility to both
This will happen if the Listing Agent sells his/her own listing to a
Client. Dual Agency is legal in Georgia, but disallowed by many
real estate brokers. In the case where an agent has a client
relationship with the Buyer and Seller in a transaction, it is common
for the real estate broker to assign another agent in the company to
represent the Buyer.
Whether representing the Buyer or Seller, the real estate agent must treat all parties in the transaction professionally, honestly, and must disclose known facts that may affect the value or condition of the house.
Real Estate Commission generally is paid by the Seller to the Listing Broker.
If there is a second agent involved in the sale, for instance a Buyer's Agent, half of the commission is paid by the Listing Broker to the Selling Broker. For instance, if the total commission is 6% of the selling price, 3% would be paid to the Selling Broker and 3% to the Listing Broker. Commission is negotiated with the seller at the time of listing. This commission is paid to the Broker (the company, not the agent), and the agent is paid by the broker in accordance to his/her broker contract.
Finally, every licensed real estate agent is not a REALTOR®. Make sure your agent is a member of the National Association of Realtors® and the Georgia Association of REALTORS®.
Frequently Asked Questions About Agency
an offer, your agent can check neighborhood sale history and the
tax records for the home to determine the fair market value. She
will negotiate your contract, always keeping your interests in
After your contract is accepted, your agent will guide you through the
process of loan application, home inspections and
through my efforts and purchase it with my assistance, you will not
obligated to pay a real estate commission.
there any real difference between one Real Estate Agent and
Consider these important issues before you make a decision:
I'll be there for you every step of the way, through your home marketing or search, contract negotiations, home inspection, and closing.
If you are considering selling your current home, please visit my MARKETING web page to see how your home can have the maximum exposure in a competitive marketplace!
Pat Sabin, REALTOR®
Call Direct: (770) 490-1633
Office: (770) 475-1130, Ext 8476
DISCLAIMER: All information herein is is believed to be accurate and timely, but not warranty as such is expressed or implied. Much of the information pertains to residential real estate in the State of Georgia. Be sure to check with your state and local authorities for accurate and up to date information.
© 1999-2011 Pat Sabin