When you are visiting a property before making any offer, do not be shy about your due diligence. This includes looking behind every picture on the wall, under every bed or area rug and lifting everything off the kitchen counter.
As the following case illustrates, if a buyer does not do their homework in advance, they may not be able to complain about anything after closing.
Have a checklist when you visit any home before making an offer, to make sure that nothing is missed. Then there will not be any unwelcome surprises after closing.
Disclose any kind of death in a home
Questions have been raised as to whether a seller should disclose that there has been a natural death which occurred in the home. In my opinion, if it is a fact that would be important to a buyer, then it should be disclosed. In the GTA alone, there are so many cultures and languages spoken that it is almost certain that a death in the home, however it happened, may affect a buyer’s decision to buy a property so it should be disclosed before any offer is made.
See this article about a case involving a suicide that was not disclosed to the buyer as well as my own views on the subject.
Make sure all commission agreement are in writing and carefully explained
In order to successfully support a claim for real estate commission, the agreement must be in writing and carefully explained, whether it is with a seller or a buyer. This is even more important when you are dealing with someone who is trying to sell their home by themselves, and may not be familiar with the real estate forms or their obligation to pay any commission. When approaching a seller who is not represented, remember to make use of the OREA Form 202 in order to secure your payment of commission, prior to presenting any offer from an interested buyer.
In addition, always be careful to fully explain the buyer representation agreement to any buyer, in particular the provision that even if they find the home by themselves, they must still bring the property to your attention and are responsible for commission even if you did not introduce them to this property.
See this case to see what happens when agreements are not reduced to writing.
My Law Practice
I have received many inquiries about my law practice, providing legal services to real estate buyers, sellers and investors. Working with Real Property Transaction Centres, I am now able to close real estate transactions throughout the GTA. If you require any assistance on a transaction that you are working on, please email me at email@example.com
If you or your clients are looking for a written quote, please visit www.realproperty.ca and search under pricing, quotation, or contact Suzanne at 1-877- 219-9618, ext. 231.
I will be conducting the following courses for credit this week:
TREB – Wednesday Feb. 27 – Achieving Success Seminar: 9:30 am – !2:30 pm. 3 CE credits
TREB – Wednesday Feb. 27 – Understanding the Home Inspection Condition – 1:30 pm – 4:30 pm – 3 CE Credits
Contact TREB at 1400 Don Mills Road, Toronto, (416) 443-8100, to register.
I have completed new courses on “Staying out of Trouble in 2013” and “Making sure you always get paid commission” These are 1 hour presentations designed to give brokerage companies and their salespeople what they need to know on topics such as lender approvals, condominium re-sales, new home agreements, including the HST rebate, protection when double-ending deals and the updated OREA forms., as well as what you need to know to always get paid commission from any buyer or seller.
If you would like to schedule a private course at your brokerage, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
About Mark Weisleder
Mark is a lawyer, author, instructor, Toronto Star columnist and keynote speaker for the real estate industry.