In a perfect world, there is a firm full of dedicated agents for each buyer and seller.  In the real world, there are buyer’s that have a 5 Points Realty buyer’s agent that want to buy a 5 Points Realty listed home. Enter dual agency. 

Dual agency is a very important aspect of real estate to understand.  It’s also a bit complicated. There are legal definitions for what that means. **Note the terms firm and agency are interchangeable here.  

” A firm that represents more than one party in the same real estate transaction is a dual agent and, through the brokers associated with the firm, shall disclose its a dual agency to the parties. ”  -21 NCAC 58A.0104

” When a firm represents both the buyer and seller in the same real estate transaction, the firm may, with the prior express approval of its buyer and seller clients, designate one or more individual brokers associated with the firm to represent only the interests of the seller and one or more other individual brokers associated with the firm to represent only the interests of the buyer in the transaction. “ -21 NCAC 58A .0104

Huh? Let us simplify that for you. Two scenarios constitute dual agency.

The first is when one agent works for both the buyer and seller. When agents from the same brokerage represent each party that is also dual agency. 

Dual agency takes a minute to understand and be comfortable with.  The agents at 5 Points Realty spend the time they need explaining dual agency to their buyer and seller clients. The first thing we do the moment we begin talking to anyone that may become a client is give them the “Working With Real Estate Agents” consumer information brochure that provides an explanation to any potential real estate clients.  We sit down and go over agency forms and allow time for our clients to ask questions before signing anything.  We also highly recommend talking to your real estate professional about dual agency before buying or selling real estate.  

Though not uncommon, dual agency also creates some unique problems and limitations in cases where the agent is actually representing both buyer and seller in a transaction. It is imperative that both the buyer and seller are fully aware of the implications.  The agent, in this case, must not discuss money, motives, strategies with either party.  The agent is simply a conduit of information between the 2 parties.  

That means certain questions are off-limits. For example:

What should I offer?

What is a good counteroffer to the buyer?

Is there anything around the property that could impact market value?

Are repair requests reasonable?

As you can imagine, this scenario needs to be very carefully managed and all parties need to be crystal clear on their agent’s role.  

There are a few advantages to dual agency. Communication is typically better because there are fewer people involved. The listing agent will have more information than a buyer’s agent would. And a dual agent may agree to a lower fee since they are entitled to transactions from both sides.

If you aren’t sure how all of this sounds to you, the good news is on both the buyer and listing (sellers) forms there is a question to buyers and sellers about wanting dual agency or not. If you aren’t interested that doesn’t mean you are out of luck.. you can grant the agency permission to designate an agent in the case of dual agency.  This means the firm/agency can choose separate agents to work exclusively with their buyer and seller clients.  

We’ll help you get that dream home of yours in a way you are not only comfortable with but that will make you happy you chose 5 Points.