2018 arrived with uncertainty about how the new rule changes in real estate would impact the market, the industry, and now... the clients. If you've been connected to any of the media updates about the March 15 Real Estate Rule Amendments coming.
In an effort to create consumer confidence and protection, the real estate council/OFSI is recommending a number of changes with how 'dual agency' is engaged in real estate transactions. I completely support a number of the initiatives that outline ways to keep clients protected, and acting in their best interest. There are times where dual agency has been incredibly helpful in connecting clients to opportunities, and when done confidently, can protect the interest in both parties. That said, there is always room for improvements.
One of the biggest changes being discussed is "double recusal" whereby an real estate agent is supposed to walk away from any listing they may have, if one of their clients (or intended clients) becomes interested in the property. Furthermore, the agent is to excuse him/her from both parties (buyer and seller) immediately. Essentially, during a multiple offer scenario, after marketing a home for 1-3 weeks on the market, spending time and $$$ invested in the marketing, If an agent haa a client that suddenly becomes interested in the property at the 11th hour (let's say, an hour before accepting offers), the agent is now supposed to excuse themselves from the sale and leave the buyer(s) and sellers to deal with the offers themselves.
Who does this benefit? certainly not sellers or buyers, as both could be left scratching their heads at 8pm on offer date, if the agent is forced to remove themselves ("Double Recusal") from both parties.
Our goal, as real estate agents, is to bring this issue to the table and ensure that there are other, more appropriate, ways to go about dealing with conflicts of agency (dual agency). Such methods as referring a partner or colleague to handle one of the clients (thereby removing the representation from one side, and remaining at arms length from one party). *side note, I've done this in the past.