The single most important thing to leave out of a service agreement

There is a long list of items that rightly belong in a comprehensive written service agreement (Schedule A) between Realtor and client.

But what thing should you NEVER include in your service agreement?

White space. Vagueness and lack of detail are earmarks of an agent who is not making any guarantees about the quality of the service, their reliability, their integrity, or their loyalty to the client. After all, a service agreement is an easy way to safeguard both you and your client and to set the terms of your agency relationship from day one. So it makes sense to make it comprehensive and as specific as possible.

Written service agreement rules are enforced by the Real Estate Council of BC and they are also covered in CREA’s The REALTOR® Code.

The following list covers the items Realtors and clients should specify.

  • “As a licensed Realtor and member of the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board, I am legally obligated to protect and promote the interests of my principals as I would my own, and to abide by the By-laws, Standards of Business Practice and Code of Ethics as set by the Board”
  • Explain the Working with a Realtor brochure and agency obligations
  • Provide undivided loyalty to the client
  • Obey all lawful instructions of the client
  • Keep the confidences of the client
  • Exercise reasonable care and skill in performing duties
  • Account for all money and property while acting for the client
  • Cooperate with other Realtors
  • Explain real estate terms and practices
  • Provide and explain all forms
  • Communicate on a regular basis
  • Provide regular market updates
  • Disclose in a timely manner all known facts affecting the transaction
  • Conduct market analysis and advise an appropriate listing price
  • Locate properties available to view and consider
  • Facilitate viewing properties and provide guidance
  • Advise regarding selection of the right property
  • Prepare and submit all necessary listing documentation
  • Advertise the listing on the MLS® and on
  • Assist in qualifying buyers
  • Arrange showings at times acceptable to the seller and, if any tenants, subject to tenants’ rights
  • Discover facts pertaining to the property
  • Inform of closing procedures and policies
  • Identify and estimate costs for closing
  • Advise on competitive offers, including appropriate conditions and subjects
  • Prepare offers at client’s direction
  • Prepare a legally binding Contract of Purchase and Sale
  • Review Contracts of Purchase and Sale submitted for the seller’s consideration
  • Present all offers promptly and objectively
  • Negotiate favourable terms and conditions
  • Assist in arranging suitable financing if necessary
  • Advise client to seek independent advice on matters outside the expertise of the licensee, such as property inspections, legal or other required services
  • Assist in removal of conditions, completion and possession process
  • Disclose all fees earned through the transaction
  • Details of your marketing/selling plan

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