Copyright © Harmony Real Estate, 2 Winnhaven Drive, Hudson, NH 03051 603-
New Hampshire Real Estate laws and regulations require real estate licensees to provide buyers and sellers of real estate services, prior to showing property, a written statement disclosing which party they represent. The purpose of this is to enable the parties to make informed choices about their agency relationship with licensees. This disclosure is not a contract.
Explanation of Terms
An agent is one who acts on behalf of another (a client) and who owes the client fiduciary duties. The duties are to (1) account for client funds; (2) exercise care and competence; (3) maintain the client's confidentiality; (4) complete the promised tasks with diligence; (5) disclose all relevant information as required by law, (6) treat the client with fairness, honesty and good faith, (7) exercise loyalty toward the client and (8) obey the client's instruction within the context of their agreement. These duties may only be modified in writing.
B. SELLER AGENCY:
Sellers may list their properties for sale with a real estate agent. A SELLER'S AGENT has the duties of loyalty, obedience, disclosure, confidentiality, reasonable care, diligence and accounting and a duty to represent the seller's interests. This generally means a duty to find a buyer willing to pay the highest price on the most advantageous terms as quickly as possible. The SELLER'S AGENT also has a duty to disclose to the seller pertinent information received from the buyer or from any other source. The SELLER'S AGENT can assist a buyer in locating a property, preparing a contract or obtaining financing. SELLER'S AGENTS are required to present properties honestly and accurately.
C. SUB -
A real estate broker must represent the client's best interests in the transaction. Traditionally, both the listing broker and the selling broker (who works with the buyer), act as agents of the SELLER. This is called sub-
D. BUYER AGENCY:
A broker who acts as a BUYER'S AGENT, or BUYER'S BROKER, owes fiduciary duties to the BUYER. The BUYER'S BROKER will represent the best interests of the BUYER as client. This relationship is defined by written agreement between the parties. in a BUYER AGENCY relationship, the BUYER must generally make a commitment to the agent.
E. DUAL AGENCY:
If a BUYER'S BROKER represents a BUYER in a transaction involving a property listed by that BROKER, or that BROKER'S company, then a DUAL AGENCY situation exists. In this case, the full range of agency duties cannot be delivered to both parties. These duties will be modified by agreement, so that neither client receives an unfair advantage DUAL AGENCY must be disclosed in writing and agreed to by both parties. A disclosed DUAL AGENT may not divulge confidential information regarding the: (1) willingness of the seller to accept less than the asking price; (2) willingness of the buyer to pay more than what has been offered (3) confidential negotiating strategy not included in the sales contract; or (4) the underlying motivations of the buyer or seller.
BUYER'S & SELLER'S RESPONSIBILITIES:
Regardless of the agency relationship, buyers and sellers have a responsibility to become informed customers to protect their own interests.