REAL ETHICS by Steve Stazel | June 2012 | Index of all Real Ethics columns
What should we disclose?
What should we disclose?
The answer to that question is just about everything of a material nature.
Article 2 of the Code of Ethics states in part that "REALTORS® shall avoid exaggeration, misrepresentation, or concealment of pertinent facts relating to the property or transaction." I would like to quote to you further from the Code of Ethics and Arbitration Manual" "…any material fact that could affect a reasonable purchaser's decision to purchase or the price that a purchaser might pay, should be disclosed."
The question that hearing panels should consider in determining whether a REALTOR® has exaggerated, misrepresented, or concealed a pertinent fact is whether disclosure of the fact in question could have had an effect on a reasonable purchaser's decision.
Think about this. If you don't disclose a material defect and the seller moves to another state, who is the only person left to sue that is still in the state and has perceived deep pockets ?
If you ever have a question in your mind about whether you should or shouldn't disclose a material fact, DISCLOSE IT! If you don't disclose a material defect you may make a commission, but is it worth exposing yourself to a lawsuit, an Ethics charge, and an investigation by the Real Estate Commission?
What are the three most important things to a person buying real estate? Location. Location, Location. What are the three most important things to a REALTOR®? DISCLOSE. DISCLOSE. DISCLOSE.
Please note this article does not address non-material facts as defined by state law and meth lab issues. They may be treated differently.
Each month, the Aurora Outlook features RealEthics, a column by Steve Stazel devoted to explaining Code of Ethics issues for members. The comments stated in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the National Association of REALTORS®, the Colorado Association of REALTORS® or the Aurora Association of REALTORS®. Ultimately, a hearing panel of the Professional Standards Committee determines whether a violation of the Code of Ethics has occurred on a case-by-case basis. These comments should not serve as the foundation of any ethics complaint, arbitration request or response.
If you have an ethical concern or an issue you would like
to see addressed, please call Stazel at (303) 773-3333 or e-mail him at
email@example.com. The comments of this article reflect the understanding and
opinions of the author and do not represent an official expression of policy by the National Association