When a REALTOR establishes an Exclusive Agency relationship with a client IN WRITING, it’s a marriage.
Let me explain . . .
That relationship is important because the REALTOR’s responsibility is to protect the interests and negotiate on behalf of the client.
The client’s responsibility is to be loyal to the REALTOR throughout the transaction and to perform as promised in any/all contractual agreements.
Sometimes . . . The client has “Outside Influencers” who, because they hear the client is in a real estate transaction, feel compelled to offer ADVICE.
This advice is often more appropriately categorized as “Distractive MisInformation” and can do more damage than good.
All this is OK (although exasperating for the REALTOR) when it’s “Uncle Joe” or “Dad” or “a 3rd cousin twice removed who was a real estate sales lady 25 years ago” giving the advice.
It is NOT OK when the advice is coming from another real estate licensee.
IMHO if a client seeks advice from an agent other than the one with whom the client has hired as an exclusive agent, that client is “Cheating” . . . and if said agent offers contractual advice, the ice on which they’re treading is VERY thin indeed. If the client doesn’t trust his REALTOR, then why hire that REALTOR?
Even worse is the agent who approaches the client and OFFERS unsolicited advice . . . THAT agent is likely violating ethical AND Legal obligations.
The REALTOR code of Ethics Standard of Practice 16-13 states that:
“All dealings concerning property exclusively listed, or with buyer/tenants who are subject to an exclusive agreement shall be carried on with the client’s representative or broker, and not with the client, except with the consent of the client’s representative or broker or except where such dealings are initiated by the client.”
and Pursuant to Tenn. Code Ann. 62-13-312(b)(10), an agent can be punished under Tennessee law for “Inducing any party to a contract, sale or lease to break such contract for the purpose of substitution in lieu thereof a new contract, where such substitution is malicious or is motivated by the personal gain of the licensee.”
Just as in marriage, cheaters know when they are cheating.
The bottom line:
Why would ANY Real Estate Sales Licensee risk loss of reputation and livelihood by engaging another Agent’s client in dialog concerning an active transaction?
Low inventory, high demand markets can bring the worst out of some folks.
Be nice out there . . .