Realtor® Ethics / Legal Tip – Starting in 2019, if requested by the buyer’s agent, the listing agent must provide a written statement to the buyer’s agent indicating that the offer has been submitted.
Recently the NAR revised the Code of Ethics, Standard of Practice 1-7, to encourage and ensure all offers are being presented to sellers. When a buyer’s agent asks the listing agent whether the offer has been submitted to the seller, the listing agent must now provide a written statement indicating the offer has in fact been presented. This could be as simple as sending back the signed rejected offer or an email indicating the offer has been submitted.
The exception to this requirement would be if the Seller has given instructions to their agent to not submit offers. In that case, when asked by the buyer’s agent whether the offer has been submitted, the listing agent may notify the buyer’s agent in writing that the seller has waived the obligation to have the offer presented.
The bottom line is that all offers must be presented to the seller unless the seller has given the listing agent different instructions. And listing agents must affirm in writing that the offer has been presented.
The relevant text of Standard of Practice 1-7 is below:
“Standard 1-7: When acting as listing brokers, REALTORS® shall continue to submit to the seller/landlord all offers and counter-offers until closing or execution of a lease unless the seller/landlord has waived this obligation in writing. Upon the written request of a cooperating broker who submits an offer to the listing broker, the listing broker shall provide a written affirmation to the cooperating broker stating that the offer has been submitted to the seller/landlord, or a written notification that the seller/ landlord has waived the obligation to have the offer presented.”