MAR Legal Hotline Notes - December
Monday, December 3, 2018
Posted by: Maria Brogan
December Notes from the MAR Legal Hotline
What changes have been made to the MAR Forms Library??
The Forms Content Advisory Committee has been working diligently all year long to improve the forms offered to MAR members. The following changes have already been implemented, or will be available to members imminently:
Form 501: Contract to Purchase Real Estate – A section has been added to identify the agent submitting the offer and disclose the capacity in which they are operating in the transaction. This does not eliminate or replace the Mandatory Agency Disclosure. This new language ensures compliance with Standard of Practice 16-10 of the REALTOR Code of Ethics, which requires buyer representatives to disclose their relationship with the buyer to the seller or their representative in writing not later than the execution of a purchase agreement.
Forms 707, 708, 709, 715, 718, 721: Exclusive Right to Sell Listing Agreement – In the section relating to the Broker’s Fee, we have included the option to select whether the percent due is of the net or gross selling price of the property.
Form 712: Notice of Dual Agency – We have added two additional signature lines to accommodate those transactions that have more than one buyer and seller.
Form 713: Notice of Designated Agency – We have added two additional signature lines to accommodate those transactions that have more than one buyer and seller.
Form 521: Referral Fee Agreement – This is a brand-new form. Use this to memorialize the details of your referral agreements.
The Committee has several other amendments “in the works,” so stay tuned for additional updates!
I want to have someone from my office cover an open house for me – is that allowed?
Yes, you can have another person from your office cover your open house, as long as you obtain your client’s permission ahead of time. It is critical to have a conversation with your seller prior to having another agent host an open house on your listing. Your seller should be informed of the options available for coverage – is the person an unlicensed assistant? Will they be acting as a seller’s agent or a facilitator hoping to land a buyer client?
Massachusetts Regulation (254 CMR 3.00(13)) requires a conspicuous disclosure of any pre-existing agency relationship at an open house. If a seller agrees to have an agent from your office host an open house as a facilitator, not only does that agent need to have a signed agency disclosure with the seller, but their role as facilitator must be displayed at the open house. The following is an example of an appropriate disclosure:
Remember to keep the best interests of your client in mind when having this conversation, and don’t try to “steer” them to the choice you want.
Source: Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® Legal Staff
Justin Davidson, MAR General Counsel
Catherine Taylor, Associate Counsel
Jonathan Schreiber, Staff Attorney
The information and services provided through the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute legal advice, nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship. The Massachusetts Association of REALTORS®, by providing this service, assumes no actual or implied responsibility for any improper use of responses to questions through this service. The Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® will not be legally responsible for any potential misrepresentations or errors made by providing this service. For more information regarding these topics authorized callers should contact the MAR legal hotline at 800-370-5342 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.