A REALTOR is NOT an Attorney!

A REALTOR is a Real Estate Sales Professional who subscribes to a high level of ethical standards.


Other things REALTORS aren’t: Home Inspector, CPA, Appraiser, Mold Specialist, Tree Trimmer, Radon Specialist, Structural Engineer, Bug Expert, Mortgage Loan expert, Surveyor, Architect, builder, professional photographer and so on and so on.

Of course, it is possible that any REALTOR could also have some expertise in any of the above, but when wearing the REALTOR hat, walks on very thin ice if offering “expert opinions” to clients and/or doubling as both for any particular client.

At a minimum, this is opportunistic and potentially a “conflict of interest” . . . at worst, it opens up a level of litigious vulnerability that would have frightened even Johnny Cochran.

Most REALTORS have a past career and gained some level of expertise while practicing that. I, for example, was an Army combat Engineer Officer. During my 12 years of service, I Supervised many projects in some of the toughest environments: designed and built roads, airstrips, waste management systems, myriad demolition (explosives) solutions, creative weapons deployments, and lots of structure construction . . . I know a LOT about all of those things.

One might think that because a big part of my training centered around “Water Flow Management” I would be golden for diagnosing and designing solutions for water issues in houses . . . NOT!

Sometimes I encounter a REALTOR who “used to be” an attorney or some other profession and has a misguided notion that he can “practice” this former expertise while negotiating a real estate transaction.

Invariably, this results in only ONE thing . . . an impossibly stressful and unnecessarily complicated transaction.

This same dynamic plays out in other ways . . .

The Inspector who morphs into a Mold/Radon specialist at first sight of an unknown organic growth in a crawl space . . .

The former attorney who adds lots of of flowery language in special stipulations for a matter for which we have a perfectly good form that does a dandy job of handling the issue.

Then there’s the REALTOR who “knows” ALL of the ins and outs of the appraisal process and plays this card as her sole argument that the house is “not worth the listing price.”

All of this can be excruciatingly frustrating for a Home Buyer or seller who only wants the transaction to CLOSE.

So . . . Be careful out there and stick to you area of expertise.

Know and do THAT and ONLY that well, and rely on the true specialists to advise your clients on any matters that aren’t in the “Real Estate Sales” venue.

The Vital few Agents of Pareto Realty know what we do well. We are “Real Estate Strategists” whose role on behalf of our clients includes knowing the Market and staying current with all things relative to the transaction . . . and having relationships with reliable specialists who we can rely on to pick up the ball and RUN with it when needed.

Published by Barry Owen

Strategist-CEO of Pareto Realty Real estate sales Professional Inviter-Facilitator-Practicer of Open Space Technology Opening safe space for people & organizations to self-organize around issues & opportunities BarryOwen.US Invite-Listen-Love

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